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Thursday, October 25, 2012

The U.S. National Digital Newspaper Program Update

As of today, the Library of Congress' Chronicling America, National Digital Newspaper Program shows 5,206,652 pages digitized. This free, online collection contains pages from more than 800 newspaper titles, published in 25 states between 1836 and 1922. You can read about in depth in the Library of Congress blog, The Signal Digital Preservation. Quoting from Deb Thomas, NDNP program coordinator:
We have full-text search for newspapers from all across the country covering almost a hundred years – you can find first-hand reporting on the battles of the Civil War, diverse voices during the years of Reconstruction, life events throughout families going back generations, and the scandals and crimes that riveted the reading public during these decades. You can explore land disputes, crop reports, society news in both cities and small communities, American perspectives on events across the world, fact and fiction in technological advances, poetry, serialized literature by such classic writers as Charles Dickens and Arthur Conan Doyle and much, much more. All digitized papers in the collection can be searched by date, location and full-text options in both a simple keyword search and a more advanced approach which allows users to zero in on specific times and places with combinations of words and phrases.
I am aware that there are other huge online collections of newspapers, such as the Newspaper Archive that claims 95,548,797 records but this is a subscription site and costs $71.88 a year. By the way, if you subscribe to MyHeritage.com you can search the NewspaperArchive.com included in the cost of membership. It is also unclear whether the claimed number refers to articles within the newspapers or the number of pages. MyHeritage.com states that the NewspaperArchive.com website has 120 million newspaper pages. In any event, there are a lot of newspaper pages to search. In addition, the NewspaperArchive.com site is searchable for free at FamilySearch Centers.

There are other huge online collections such as NewsBank.com and its sister site. GenealogyBank.com, both subscription sites.

Some states have extensive collections of digitized newspapers, such as the Utah Digital Newspaper Project but others such as my own state of Arizona are less extensive.


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