One of the country’s longest-running independent magazines, Harrowsmith Country Life, has ceased publication. Staff at the Toronto-based bimonthly, including veteran editor-in-chief Tom Cruickshank, received termination notices July 25 from its Laval, Que.-based publisher, Malcolm Publishing Inc. Attempts to reach Cruickshank or a Malcolm representative for explanation or comment were unsuccessful. The magazine, originally titled Harrowsmith, was started in 1976 by James M. Lawrence in Camden East, Ont. and by the late 1970s had more than 100,000 subscribers. In 1988 Lawrence sold the magazine to Quebec’s Telemedia which subsequently produced a U.S. edition. In 1996 Harrowsmith was purchased by Malcolm, with Cruickshank assuming the editorship.
“It’s kind of sad because our 35th anniversary issue was all set to go,” said former national accounts manager Madeleine Hague of the termination. This year the magazine managed to publish only one issue, in March. At the same time, Hague indicated the publication was solid financially and circulation-wise. According to a 2010 report by industry watchdog Mastheadonline, Harrowsmith Country Life’s total revenue (subscription and advertising) for 2009 was $3.2-million on an average circulation of more than 125,000. Last year the bimonthly received $334,231 from the new Canada Periodical Fund administered by Canadian Heritage.
Editor's note: The original version of this article incorrectly stated Harrowsmith Country Life’s revenue for 2009. This version has been corrected.