THE PAPER OF THE EASTERN TOWNSHIPS SINCE 1897
This 116-year-old paper is now known as The Record. It is one of only two English-language daily newspapers left in the Province of Quebec, Canada, and the only one in the province outside of Montreal. It has a daily circulation of about 6,000 in an area known in English as the Eastern Townships - a cluster of 11 counties southeast of Montreal bordering Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. Sherbrooke is the largest city in the Townships, 147 km. east of Montreal, with a population of more than 154,000 and is overwhelmingly francophone.
By HUGH DOHERTY
(Reporter, editorial writer, 1953-57; news editor, 1959-61; editor-in-chief, 1961-68)
These pages are a personal scrapbook of my 12 years with the newspaper, when it was the afternoon Sherbrooke Daily Record, as it had been since its founding until 1969.
My first newsroom job was at the Record in the summer of 1953 as an 18-year-old cub reporter. There were four other English-language dailies in the province then. Three were in Montreal: the Star, the Gazette and the Herald. The other was in Quebec City, the Chronicle-Telegraph.
Me and women's editor Florine Mullins, 1953; press pass signed by Police Chief Edouard Moreau.
I worked for the Record every summer and on holidays for four years while I was at nearby Bishop's University. In between full-time employment, I covered university news and sports for the paper. I could not have completed university without the money I earned at the Record, or gone on to a career in journalism without the love of the craft and the skills I developed there.
After graduation and some overseas study, I joined the paper full-time. I left for a couple of years to work at the Montreal Gazette, but returned as news editor and then editor-in-chief until 1968.
The circulation of the Record in the mid-1960s had risen to just over 10,000.
When I first joined the paper, the population of Sherbrooke was about 60,000. The mayor was Emile Levesque, succeeded in 1955 by Armand Nadeau, who was in office until 1970. The dapper and popular Nadeau, a fluently bilingual francophone, was the first mayor to break the city's tradition of alternating anglophone and francophone mayors.
HEART OF DOWNTOWN: intersection of King and Wellington streets, winter 1956
Maurice Duplessis and his Union Nationale government were at the height of their power in Quebec. Duplessis died in 1959 and a year later, Quebec's Quiet Revolution began with the election of Jean Lesage's Liberals. The years that followed included the beginnings of the separatist movement, the first FLQ bombings and the rise to prominence of Rene Levesque, father of the present-day Partie Quebecois.
There were four Canadian prime ministers in the same period: Louis St. Laurent, John Diefenbaker, Lester Pearson, and in mid-1968, Pierre Trudeau. Canada got a new flag in 1965, our centennial year was celebrated in 1967, and Expo 67 was held in Montreal.
Elsewhere in the world, 1953 was the year in which Queen Elizabeth II was crowned, and the Korean War ended. The space age began in 1957 when the USSR launched Sputnik, the first earth-orbiting satellite. Fidel Castro began his revolution in Cuba two years later. In the 1960's, the Vietnam War began, U.S. President John Kennedy was assassinated, the Berlin Wall was erected and the first heart transplant operation was performed.
But the scrapbook pages below are not much about the news events of the time. They're mostly stories and pictures about my experiences, about the people I worked with, and about some of the things that happened at and to the Record in those marvellous years when everything was new and exciting, and the future seemed to have no horizon.
I left the Record in 1968 to take up a new job with the Victoria, B.C. Daily Colonist, and five years later switched to television news with the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, retiring in 1995.
History of The Record | 60th Anniversary in 1957 | Those Were The Days
Covering the County Fairs | Glenn Gould Comes to Town | The Editors
A First in Canada | The Strike of '62 | Trudeaumania Hits the City
Learning on the Job | Montreal's Expo 67 | Nightstaff: a poem
This page was started March 19, 1999. Last updated February 27, 2013