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Library Resource Guide for: HISTORY (AMERICAN)

Pre-1980 North American Newspapers at the Brown University Library

Newspapers can be an important tool for historical research. Until recently, most researchers have had to depend on microfilm for access to newspaper content with historical value. However, the number of online collections of historical newspapers continues to grow, especially with the advent of new software technology specifically designed for digitizing newspapers.

The Brown University Library maintains collections of historical newspapers in a variety of formats. Below are links for Early American Newspapers, Series I (covering newspapers from the Colonial and Antebellum eras), the Nineteenth Century U.S. Newspapers Database (a national collection of U.S. newspapers for the period from 1800 to 1900) and ProQuest Historical Newspapers (selected mainstream and African American titles covering the period from 1850 through the 20th century). For a selection of other databases containing searchable full text historical newspapers, please go to the Databases page and scroll down to the heading for "Newspapers."

Supplementing these subscription resources is Chronicling America (National Digital Newspapers Project), a partnership formed by the Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities for the purpose of creating a public respository of internet-accessible full text, searchable digital newspapers from across the nation. To date, the project encompasses newspapers from 22 states plus the District of Columbia, and it is rapidly adding partners in other states and territories. Current holdings in Chronicling America cover the period from 1862 through 1922, with the bulk of the material falling between 1880 and 1910. A list of available titles is provided. When completed (at some point in the next two decades), Chronicling America is anticipated to include newspapers from all 50 states published between 1836 and 1922. In the interim, the site provides a searchable directory of newspapers published in the United States between 1690 and the present. Another emerging tool is NewspaperCat, a search interface for online newspapers created by the Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida.

Also provided below are details of the Library's current holdings of historical newspapers on microfilm, as well as a selection of public digital projects for historical newspapers published prior to 1980.

NOTE: General information on current newspaper holdings at the Brown University Library is available on the Library Resource Guide for Reference at the Rockefeller Library.

Subscription Databases:

Early American Newspapers. Series 1. 1690-1876.  full text icon  
1690-1876; provides access to more than 160 significant, historic newspapers listed in Clarence Brigham's authoritative bibliography, History and Bibliography of American Newspapers, 1620-1820, and in additional subsequent bibliographies.

Nineteenth (19th) Century U.S. Newspapers  full text icon  
Provides access to approximately 1.5 million pages of primary source newspaper content from the 19th century, featuring full text content and images from numerous newspapers from a range of urban and rural regions throughout the U.S. The collection encompasses the entire 19th century, with an emphasis on such topics as the American Civil War, African-American culture and history, Western migration and Antebellum-era life among other subjects.

ProQuest Historical Newspapers  full text icon  
These historical newspapers offer full text and full image articles for newspapers dating back to the 19th century. Please click on the links below to search each newspaper. To search more than one newspaper at the same time, click on one of your titles, then use the link for "News and Newspapers" to open the selection box and uncheck the boxes for any newspapers that you do not wish to search. Brown University Library subscribes to:

Historical Arizona Republican
Historical Atlanta Constitution
Atlanta Daily World
Historical Baltimore Afro-American
Historical Boston Globe
Historical Chicago Defender
Historical Chicago Tribune
Historical Chinese Newspapers Collection
Historical Christian Science Monitor
Historical Detroit Free Press
Historical Guardian and Observer
Historical Los Angeles Times
Historical Nashville Tennesseean
Historical New York Amsterdam News
Historical New York Times
Historical Times of India
Historical Wall Street Journal
Historical Washington Post


Database Resources:

Created by the Smathers Libraries at the University of Florida, NewspaperCat allows users to search for freely available digital copies of newspapers created by libraries, historical societies and other institutions to enhance public access to newspapers. NewspaperCat currently indexes and provides direct online access to 1000 newspaper titles from the United States and the Caribbean.

Microform Resources:

Amsterdam News: 1969 to Present
New York's pre-eminent African American newspaper. (NOTE: Full text coverage is available online for 1922 to 1993 through ProQuest Historical Newspapers and from 1993 to present through the Ethnic News Watch database).
» Josiah Record

Atlanta Constitution: 1960 to 2001
» Josiah Record

Boston Globe: 1960 to Present
» F B751

Chicago Defender: 1909 to Present
National edition of an important newspaper covering major issues from the African American perspective.
» Josiah Record

Chicago Tribune: 1969 to 2006
» Josiah Record

Christian Science Monitor: 1960 to 1983
» Josiah Record

Daily Bee (Sacramento): 1857 to 1890
Previously published under the title California American and later under the titles Evening Bee and Sacramento Bee.
» AN .D35x

Los Angeles Times: 1977 to Present
» Josiah Record

New York Times: 1851 to Present
» Josiah Record

The Pacific Citizen: 1929 to 2004
English language newspaper established by the Japanese American Citizens League, and known for its coverage Japanese American and Asian American issues.
» E184 .J3 P33x

Providence Journal: 1829 to Present
PLEASE NOTE: A partial (historical) index to the ProJo covering the years 1829 to 1916 is available on microfilm. This index was compiled by Henry R. Davis in 1916. A current index to the ProJo is maintained by the Providence Public Library and must be consulted there.
» Josiah Record

Washington Post: 1959 to Present
PLEASE NOTE: Issues from 1974 to present published under the title Washington Post, while issues from 1959 to 1973 were published under the title Washington Post, Times Herald (issues published prior to 1959 were published under the title Washington Post and Times Herald, but Brown does not have issues dating prior to 1959).

Negro Periodicals in the United States, 1840 to 1960
A microfiche publication of the Negro Universities Press in 1969, this microform set was an early attempt to capture and make available for scholarship a wide range of African American publications from the antebellum era through the 1950s. The set includes journals, magazines, and newspapers, along with documents, speeches, narratives, papers, essays, letters, records and tracts. An annotated bibliography with succinct description of the titles in the the set has been prepared by Prof. Melvin R. Sylvester of Long Island University and can be viewed on the website of LIU's Schwartz Memorial Library. Rock Microfiche E185.5

Pittsburgh Courier (National Edition): 1911 to 1912, 1923 to 1950
This publication changed title several times. See, also, related records for the Courier for 1950 to 1954, the Pittsburgh Courier for 1955 to 1966, the New Pittsburgh Courier for 1966 to the present.

NOTE: Searchable full text coverage of the Pittsburgh Courier for 1960 through 1965 is available through the Ethnic News Watch database.
» Josiah Record

COVERS: 1700 through 1830
CONTENTS: American newspapers, urban and rural
HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: a JOSIAH "Word" search for "early american newspapers" pulls up a listing of all the titles in this series.


Internet Resources:

  • Atlantic County (New Jersey) Digitized Newspapers
    COVERS: 1860 - 1923, searchable full text in pdf format
    CONTENTS: 11 titles from Atlantic County (including Atlantic City)
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: The title list can be found on the main page for digitized newspapers.

  • Birmingham (Alabama) Newspapers
    COVERS: 1874 to 1887
    Birmingham Iron Age, 1874 to 1885
    The Weekly Iron Age, 1884 to 1887
    The Weekly Age, 1888 to 1899
    Pratt City Herald, 1899 to 1901

  • Brooklyn (NY) Daily Eagle
    COVERS: 1841 to 1902; full text.
    CONTENTS: Brooklyn Daily Eagle from 1849-1902, along with two earlier and related newspaper titles (the Brooklyn Daily Eagle and Kings County Democrat, published from 1846 to 1849, and the Brooklyn Eagle and Kings County Democrat, published from 1841 to 1846).

  • California Digital Newspaper Program
    COVERS: 1849 to 1911, searchable full text
    CONTENTS: Currently 17 titles (and growing), also made available through the Chronicling America site
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: See title list

  • Colorado Historic Newspapers
    COVERS: 1859 to 1923, searchable full text in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    CONTENTS: 147 newspapers, representing 60 cities and 40 counties. Includes titles published in English, German, Spanish and Swedish.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: Use the link for "Titles in CHNC" at the top of the main page which will open the title list in a new tab.

  • Connecting Canadians: Canadas Multicultural Newspapers
    COVERS: Ethnic newspapers in Croatian, Estonian, Latvian, Finnish, Ukrainian, Serbian, Hungarian, Lithuanian and Polish.
    CONTENTS: Includes 13 of the 20 listed titles at present.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: There is a link to the title list at the right side of the main page. The list is alphabetical and is presented by title and by language.

  • Dziennik Zwiazkowy
    COVERS: 1908-1917, in Polish
    CONTENTS: First decade of Chicago's oldest Polish language newspaper, still in print today as the Polish Daily News

  • Farm, Field & Fireside: Agricultural Newspaper Collection
    COVERS: 1856-1981
    CONTENTS: 19 titles (with 3 additional titles forthcoming) representing historically significant U. S. farm weeklies published primarily in Pennsylvania, Illinois, Minnesota and Wisconsin.

  • Freedoms Journal
    COVERS: 1827 to 1829, full text in pdf format. NOTE: each issue constitutes a large file (1 mg or more). You will need Adobe Acrobat Reader to view the pages. Also note that individual issues may be browsed, but the collection itself has no search feature.
    CONTENTS: Earliest African American newspaper in the United States.

  • Georgia Historic Newspapers
    COVERS: 1828-1887, searchable full text in digitized facsimile
    The Cherokee Phoenix (New Echota, Georgia), 1828 to 1834
    The Colored Tribune (Savannah, Georgia) 1876
    The Dublin Post (Dublin, Georgia), 1878 to 1887

  • Hawaiian Nupepa Collection
    COVERS: 1834 to 1948, searchable full text
    CONTENTS: Newspapers in the Hawaiian language
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: See title list

  • Historical Newspapers in Washington Project
    COVERS:1852 to 1892, searchable full text.
    CONTENTS: 21 newspapers from 9 communities across the state
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: There is a pull down menu on the main page.

    NOTE: Requires either DJVU plugin or Adobe Acrobat Reader

  • Illinois Digital Newspaper Project
    COVERS: Currently 1895-1945 (forthcoming issues of two titles will expand the range from 1854 through 1975)
    Daily Illini 1916 to1945 (1962-1975 forthcoming)
    Urbana Daily Courier 1903 to1935
    Express (Tallula, Illinois) 1895 to 1896
    Sycamore True Republican 1854 to1923 (forthcoming)

  • Making of America (Cornell Site)
    COVERS: Assorted 19th century American journals dating from 1831 to 1901; full text
    CONTENTS: Includes many important monthly reviews, such as Atlantic Monthly, The Century, Harper's Monthly, North American Review, Scribner's, Putnam's Monthly, Scientific American, U.S. Democratic Review, and many others.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: From the home page, choose �Browse by Journal� to pull up the title list

  • Making of America (Michigan Site)
    COVERS: Assorted 19th century American journals dating from 1831 to 1901; full text
    CONTENTS: Includes Appleton's, Catholic World, DeBow's, Southern Literary Messenger, Ladies Repository, Princeton Review, Vanity Fair, and others.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: From the home page, choose �Browse MoA Journals" and then "Browse MoA Journals by vol/issue� to pull up the title list.

  • Missouri Historical Newspapers Project
    COVERS: 1835 to 1990, searchable full text in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    CONTENTS: 14 titles from different periods of time, representing localities around the state.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: Follow the browse link at the top of the main page.

  • New Orleans (Louisiana) Bee/LAbeille de la Nouvelle-Orleans
    COVERS: 1827-1923, non-searchable full text in pdf format (requires Adobe Acrobat Reader to view)
    CONTENTS: French language newspaper with an English section and briefly (from 1829 to 1830) a Spanish section

  • Northern New York Historical Newspapers
    COVERS: 1811 to 1987, searchable full text, displays full page in pdf format
    CONTENTS: 19 newspapers from Northern New York State.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: The title list, with dates, is displayed on the main page. You can link to individual titles and search within the title.

  • Occident and American Jewish Advocate
    COVERS: 1843 to 1850.
    CONTENTS: The earliest American-Jewish newspaper in the United States.

  • Pennsylvania Civil War Newspapers
    COVERS: 1831 to 1877, in searchable, full text digital facsimile of the originals. Can also be browsed by issue.
    CONTENTS: Newspaper titles representing 19 different localities around the state.
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: A list of all included titles, with dates of publication, is provided on the project homepage. You will see it when you click on the link for this database.

  • Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania) Jewish Newspaper Project
    COVERS: 1895 to present, searchable full text in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    The Jewish Criterion (Pittsburgh), 1895 to 1962
    The American Jewish Outlook (Pittsburgh) 1934 to 1962
    The Jewish Chronicle (Pittsburgh), 1962 to present

    NOTE: Digitization of The American Jewish Outlook has not yet been completed. Currently, only issues from 1946 are available

  • Quincy (Illinois) Historical Newspaper Archive
    COVERS: 1835 to 1891, searchable full text in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    Quincy Daily Herald (Quincy, Illinois), from 1853 to 1890
    Quincy Daily Whig (Quincy, Illinois), from 1835 to 1891
    Quincy Daily Journal (Quincy, Illinois), from 1883 to 1919
    Illinois Bounty Land Register (Quincy, Illinois), 1835-1836

  • Richmond (Virginia) Daily Dispatch
    COVERS: 1860 to 1865, full text
    CONTENTS: searchable but non-facsimile format (i.e., text only)

  • Suffolk (NY) Historical Newspapers
    COVERS: 1839-1931, searchable full text of newspapers published in Suffolk County, New York (Long Island), in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    The Corrector (Sag Harbor, New York), from 1839 to 1871
    The Long Island Traveler (Southold, New York), from 1872 to 1898
    The Long Islander (Huntinton, New York), 1839-1925
    The Mid-Island Mail (Medford Station, New York), 1935-1941
    The Patchogue Advance (Patchogue, New York), 1926-1948
    The Port Jefferson Echo (Port Jefferson, New York), from 1892 to 1931
    The Sag Harbor Express (Sag Harbor, New York), from 1885 to 1898
    The South Side Signal (Babylon, New York), 1869-1879
    The Suffolk County News (Sayville, New York), 1888-1923

  • The British Colonist (Canada)
    COVERS: 1858 - 1910, searchable full text of the leading regional newspaper for Vancouver Island and British Columbia.

  • Tundra Times (Alaska)
    COVERS: 1962 to 1997, searchable full text
    CONTENTS: the "voice of Alaskan Natives"
    (NOTE: interface is very slow)

  • Utah Digital Newspapers Project
    COVERS: 1850 to 1961, searchable full text in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    CONTENTS: More than 40 newspapers from across the the state (and climbing ! ). This project also contributes to the Chronicling America project
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: Use the link on the top of the page for "Titles and Dates." The title list will open as a pdf.

  • Virginia Gazette (Williamsburg)
    COVERS: 1736 to 1780, digitized full text

    NOTE: Issues may be browsed, and there is a subject index but full search capacity is not available.

  • Winona (Minnesota) Newspaper Project
    COVERS: 1855 to 1925, searchable full text in digitized facsimile of the originals.
    Winona Daily Republican (Winona, Minnesota), from 1882 to 1901
    Winona Argus (Winona, Minnesota), from 1855 to 1857
    Winona Republican-Herald (Winona, Minnesota), 1906-1925
    Winona Daily News (Winona, Minnesota), 1954-1976

  • Wyoming Newspaper Project
    COVERS: 1849 - 1922, all newspapers printed in Wyoming in the period, searchable full text
    CONTENTS: More than 150 Wyoming titles
    HOW TO BROWSE THE TITLE LIST: There is a link to the pdf title list at the bottom of the main page.