Legacy Story: A Newspaper in Which We See Ourselves (1985)

The front page of the first issue of Minnesota Women’s Press

Twice per month in 2024, MWP is uplifting select pieces from our 39-year archive with a focus on longstanding issues. In tandem with our “Celebrations” print issue, our April focus is on the anniversary of Minnesota Women’s Press’ founding in April 1985. 

The following editorial appeared in the first-ever edition of Minnesota Women’s Press.

This is the first issue of Minnesota Women’s Press.

At a time when women are making news in more ways than ever before, Minnesota Women’s Press will do what no other Minnesota newspaper does: it will specialize in news by, for, and about women. Its focus will be on how events affect women’s lives, how women affect events, and what women are thinking and feeling about it all.

Many women have contributed ideas and energy toward creating Minnesota Women’s Press. As a group, we are diverse in age and life experience. Some of us consider ourselves activists; more do not. We are women with careers, women with jobs, women who work in the home. We live alone or with a husband, a partner, or friends. Some of us have children and some don’t. We are of different cultural backgrounds and races.

What we have in common is a sense of excitement about creating this newspaper. [Editor’s Note: From its founding until the 2008 recession when it transitioned to a monthly magazine, MWP existed as a bi-weekly newspaper.]

We envision a newspaper that describes women’s experiences in respectful ways, approaches news from a personal perspective, and reflects the diversity as well as the shared experiences of women.

A newspaper, in short, in which we see ourselves.

As our tagline says, we believe that “a woman’s place is in the news.” We’ll be covering the newsworthy things that women are doing, as well as news about local events and developments that affect women.

In the process, we’ll be redefining what “newsworthy” means, expanding it to include women and events that don’t usually make the news.

And whatever the subject, ours will be a female approach to the news. We’ll be interested in the individuals involved, the human dynamics of the situation, the behind-the-scenes perspective. We’ll give stories the space they need, and we’ll stay with them long enough to understand their complexity, and their consequences.

In addition to news reports, readers of Minnesota Women’s Press will find profiles of Minnesota women, present and past. The women featured may not be public figures, but they will be newsworthy — perhaps because of the personal challenges they have met, their volunteer contributions or career achievements, or their outlook on life.

Readers will also find practical information that’s useful in their daily lives, reviews of creative women’s work, and announcements of meetings and events. We’ll take editorial stands on issues pertinent to women, and we’ll invite commentary and opinion from women with diverse perspectives.

April 1985