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Genealogy in Old Newspapers

Genealogy in Old Newspapers

Like their present-day counterparts, old newspapers are a great source of marriage and obituary notices. In fact, early newspapers are sometimes the ONLY source of genealogical information for a specific locality at a particular point in time. Since 18th- and 19th-century newspapers have not come down to us with their own indexes, it’s daunting to contemplate scouring them–whether in the original, digitized, or microfilm version–for their “buried” genealogical content. 

Fortunately, a number of dedicated genealogists have taken on the assignment of sifting through the complete run of various early newspapers to find these buried genealogical nuggets. In the majority of cases, their efforts have yielded book-length collections of marriage, death, or other vital records; they’ve also yielded lists of passengers, public officials, college graduates, members of committees of correspondence, and addressees of unclaimed letters, as well as other items of genealogical value.

Below you’ll find eleven publications featuring genealogical information extracted from newspapers in North America and the British Isles. If you haven’t turned up that missing ancestor in other sources, you may just discover him or her up in one of the following collections: 

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