La Gazette de Montréal was first published on this day in 1795. It was published in French initially, but Editor Fleury Mesplet soon realized that the only people with advertising money in Montreal spoke English. It is now Quebec’s only English-language daily. Contrary to popular belief, it is not, the oldest one – that honour belongs to the Quebec Telegraph Journal, a high-quality weekly in Quebec City.
The Gazette survived bitter circulation wars with the Montreal Herald, the Montreal Star and the Montreal Daily News. It seemed to be doing all right in recent years, but cuts in the newsroom earlier this year might indicate trouble.