Essex County (Ontario) Newspapers


Armand Lavergne



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Place of Publication

Windsor, Ontario


Title Variation

Windsor Clairon

Publication Dates

No. 1 (1913: Sept. 25) - no. 15 (1914)



Online Holdings

No. 1 (1913: Sept 25) 6p.
No. 2 (1913: Oct. 2) 8p.
No. 5 (1913: Oct. 23) 8p.


Clairon (Windsor), Windsor Clairon, Windsor (Ontario), Essex County (Ontario), Newspapers


Canadian History | Public History


Public Domain


Le Clairon (Windsor) was a short-lived French language weekly newspaper that started publishing Thursday, September 25th, 1913 and ceased early in 1914 with issue no. 15. It was a new competitor to Le Progres, the longstanding French language newspaper of the region. Approximately 5,000 copies of each issue were printed and distributed to the francophones of Essex and Kent counties and the city of Detroit. It is not known how many subscribers it actually garnered at $1 per year, paid in advance. Its motto was "Servir!".

Le Clairon was endorsed by L'Association Canadienne-Francaise D'Education D'Ontario and the local francophone business organization, the Union Commerciale de Windsor. They contracted the newspaper printing with Euclide Jacques and Alfred Saint-Onge who had recently purchased the print shop, La Compagnie de Publication de Windsor (24 Pitt St. W.), formerly owned by William Thomas Jacques. As editor, they parachuted in Armand Lavergne, a star journalist and politician from Montreal. However, after a few issues, the editorship devolved to local Arthur Meloche (Source: Prayers, petitions, and protests by Jack Cecillon, 2013, page 88). The newspaper's main purpose was to encourage resistance to the Ontario conservative government's regulations 17 and 18 which effectively eliminated French language schools and greatly curtailed French language instruction in bilingual schools. The more general goal was the promotion of the French language and the instillation of pride in French culture in this region.

Lavergne's editorials and reprinted speeches all exhort the safeguarding of both the French language and the Catholic faith. "Francais dans une province anglaise, catholiques dans une province protestante, nous devons combattre tous les jours pour conserver la langue et la foi de nos meres." In particular, he emphasizes the need for francophones to stand up for their right to French education in Ontario. Le Clairon publishes examples of schools, both local, e.g. Pain Court, and further afield, resisting the inspections by protestant Ministry of Education officials. The newspaper also repeatedly chides parents for allowing English to be spoken in their homes. Although there was definitely opposition in the region to the actions of the Ontario government, many francophone parents still wanted their children to speak, read, and write English, to help ensure their success in the wider business world. This may be one reason why Le Clairon did not receive the level of support it was hoping for.

Updated: Katharine Ball, December 2019

Source of our Digitized Holdings

Microfilm at Leddy Library

Other Potential Holdings

University of Ottawa. Library: no. 1 (1913) - no. 15 (1914) on microfilm

To view online at the Internet Archive:

Clairon (Windsor)



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