Alaska Highway News founder Ma Murray remembered with new museum exhibit

“She called a spade a spade; she wasn’t afraid nothing, no way,” she recalled emotionally. She was just Ma. She shot from the hip, she told you what she thought, but she always seemed to have a compassion.” 

Graham spent a year with Murray at her in 1964, just after her grandfather died, helping out with chores like taking letters to the post office. 


The outspoken Ma and her husband and politician George came to Fort St. John in 1944 to start the Alaska Highway News as the city was being built. The paper was taken over by their children in the 1950s. 

The two met when Murray, who was then Margaret Lally, moved up from Kansas with marrying a Calgary cowboy in mind.

15:18 “She made her up way up, landed in Vancouver, and needed a job,” explains Graham. “She looked in the paper and guess where she ended up? The Chinook, grandpa [George] Murray’s paper.”

The display at the museum includes many artifacts from the paper’s origins, and Graham fondly remembers the stovepipe that kept them warm.