Birth of a newspaper

Don Brown publisher of the Vancouver Express

November 7th 1978 — When the employees of the Vancouver Province and Sun newspapers were locked out in November of 1978 they knew it was to be for a long time. In preparation they rented space at 554 East 15th Avenue near Kingsway in Vancouver and set up a strike newspaper called The Express. The lockout began on a Tuesday and the first edition came out on the Friday. Within weeks it was making a profit, in fact it was making so much money many of the reporters didn’t want to return to the Province or Sun when the strike ended 8 months later.

The stories about this newspaper are endless. Ros Oberlyn had a front page story in the first edition and she was on the corner of Granville and Broadway the next day as a newsie selling the paper on the street. Towards the end of the strike there was so much advertising and so little newsprint available the Express began stealing it from other newspapers.

Above, Lance Secret looks on as the publisher of The Express, Don Brown, types the lead editorial for the first issue of the newspaper. Below is a slide show of pictures from the first day of The Express. The people in the pictures include, Patrick Durrant, Mike Beamish, Bob Ross, Rod Mickleburgh, Wyng Chow, Jake van der Kamp, Sun editor Bruce Smilie, Larry Emrick, Genevieve Westcott, Ashley Ford, Linda Hossie, Kent ‘Cookie’ Gilchrist, Geoff Wellens, Gerry Bellett, Bob Stahl, Scott Macrae, Ros Oberlyn, John Olding, and Carol Volkart.

NOTE: This story was originally posted in 2009 but the pictures somehow vanished and the only way to recover them was to repost everything.

Updated: September 12, 2020 — 8:44 pm