In those days the type for the paper was hand set, and with only sufficient type for one page, it took six days to put the four-page five-column paper out on the streets. The press was a treadle type — there were no gasoline engines in the country and Henry Henderson, co-discoverer (with his brother William) of the Klondike, often came in to pump the press by hand.
In February 1918 Mr. Kitchen installed the first linotype, job press and diamond cylinder press in the Peace River country. George Duncan purchased a half interest in 1918 and they operated the paper as the “Grande Prairie Herald Limited”. A two-storey building was erected in the spring of 1919. The paper was housed downstairs, and the upper floor was used for the IOOF Lodge.
Other papers came into being, such as the “Pioneer Signal” in Grande Prairie, the Clairmont “Independent,” the Lake Saskatoon “Advance,” and the Spirit River “Echo,” but they [were all] out of business by the fall of 1920. Kitchen and Duncan purchased the equipment from theses plants and sorted out the best, shipping the balance to southern Alberta. In 1927 Mr. Kitchen sold his interest to W.C. Fredricks of the Peace River “Record”. After spending two years at the coast, Mr. Kitchen returned to Grande Prairie with the intent of starting some other type of business. However, a number of business friends in the BC Peace River Block urged him to establish a newspaper in their area. So, in January of 1930 he proceeded to Winnipeg and purchased sufficient equipment for a plant. Then in May of that same year, the Peace River Block “News” published its first issue at Rolla, BC. The paper was housed in the Pioneer Hall — a two-storey log building whose upstairs served as the local dance hall.
The Peace River Block “News”, which at that time was published by a staff of three, was a weekly paper. It maintained a circulation of approximately 300 customers throughout the BC Peace River Block. Gathering news was a cooperative effort among the local farm communities. Each area had its news correspondent who was responsible for sending in any local information or news of interest.
With the arrival of the railway at Dawson Creek, the paper was moved to the railhead in 1932. A new building was built on the lot immediate east of their present location. With the support of the advertisers, subscribers, and his four children — two sons, Norman and Charlie, and two daughters, Edna and Bea — the business grew and prospered.