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A Research Guide: From the Secondary Source to the Primary Source

Tools for Locating Newspapers

Newspapers provide a wide range of information about society. The news that is reported in newspapers has changed over time. In the latter part of the eighteenth century, a newspaper's main function was to report news that was happening at a distance. Therefore, in addition to local news, you will find excerpts of articles and reports from newspapers in other regions of the country and the world. Most early newspapers are on microfilm and are available in public libraries and college libraries throughout the country.

Using the research tools listed below, you will be able to locate the titles of newspapers published in any state or town in America. Once you have the titles, you can ask a Reference Librarian for assistance in locating actual copies of the newspaper on microfilm.

Chronological Tables:

Chronological Tables of American Newspapers, 1690-1820

Chronological Tables of American Newspapers will assist you in locating the names and existence of newspapers in America from 1690-1820. This is useful if you are doing research in a specific time period and want to see what newspaper existed in a particular region of the country. Once you locate a list of newspapers, you can then use the other sources below to determine the scope of the paper, its character and the availability of copies on microfilm.

Bibliographies and Histories:

History and Bibliography of American Newspapers 1690-1820

Similar Sources to Consult:
Early American Newspapers on Microfilm
The Press & the American Revolution

History and Bibliography of American Newspapers provides detailed bibliographic citations about newspapers including which libraries hold original copies as well as when newspapers existed and a brief description of their history. It is arranged by state and then by town within each state.

 
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