Katherine Hughes (1877-1925)

August 6, 2021

Katherine Hughes was born on Prince Edward Island. In 1903, after completing her education there, she joined the staff of the Montreal Daily Star. In 1904 she became a founding member of the Canadian Women’s Press Club (CWPC) along with 15 other Canadian women journalists who founded the club while travelling on a Canadian Pacific Railway train to cover the St. Louis World Fair. By 1906 Hughes had moved west and was a journalist at the Edmonton Bulletin where she, among other assignments, covered news from the Alberta provincial legislature using pen names Mary Markwell and K.H. In 1908 she left daily journalism, becoming Alberta’s first provincial archivist. But by 1914 Hughes had become assistant to the Agent General for Alberta, based in London, England where she befriended people lobbying for Irish independence. By 1920 she had written a draft biography of William Van Horne, but when it was printed, without her knowledge, Walter Vaughn was credited as the author. About that time Hughes moved to Washington D.C. to lobby for Irish independence. She also travelled to Australia to support the Irish cause before settling in New York City. As well as having been a journalist she is credited as the author of two biographies – Archbishop O’Brien: Man and Churchman (Ottawa 1906), and Father Lacombe: The Black Robe Voyageur (Toronto 1911).

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