Tattered Past

Tattered Past: My ongoing journey through genealogy, history, writing, self-exploration and art. ~~~ Rita Ackerman

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

N is for Newspapers

I love reading old newspapers. Papers from where I live now, papers from Tombstone, Arizona for research, papers from Great Bend, Kansas for tidbits of when I was growing up. They are endless. And with the Internet your access is too.

There are a number of sites for free newspaper research. Some of my favorites are:

Many states also have their own newspaper search sites.

Others can be accessed through paid sites:

Newspaper Archive


Genealogy Bank

There are tricks to using these sites, just like with everything. The older the paper the less accurate the search engines for each one are. Even though Elephind indexes Chronicling America you should do your search in each one. They may find different articles.

Examples of a search in these would be:

"Samuel Wilburn" Arkansas

"Samuel Wilburn" 1923

"Samuel Wilburn" death, 1923

Just keep trying different combinations. Also try different spellings. "Sam Wilburn" or "Samuel Welborne"

I remember when I had my tonsils out. It was in St. Rose Hospital in Great Bend. I remember there was a big toy box in the hallway and I thought that was just like Christmas. I ended up getting in trouble for not staying in bed.

However, I didn't remember how old I was. Through the newspaper search on Ancestry I found that I entered the hospital on July 18, 1861. Wow, my name was in print. lol I was eight.

Of course newspapers can be a source for obituaries, marriages, graduations and births. In rural areas they may list local residents who have changed jobs or gone on a visit to relatives in another state. I was once listed in the local paper when I paid a visit to my aunt in uncle near Dodge City, Kansas.

Newspaper announcement about my great grandparent's marriage from the 
Meade County News on December 6, 1900.
Located through Elephind.com

Legal notices such as land and probate records are often found. How about an advertisement for your family's business?

Get creative and read those newspapers.