Library of Congress Chronicling America

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The Chronicling America, National Historical Newspapers project was commissioned to locate and preserve copies of newspapers published over the years in the towns, counties, and states of America dating back to 1690. The site presently contains over 12 million pages of digitized newspapers and a list of virtually all of the newspapers published in America.

Description of the Website

Chronicling America, National Historic Newspapers is a website providing access to information about historic newspapers and select digitized newspaper pages, and is produced by the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP). NDNP, a partnership between the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Library of Congress (LOC).

The Project is a long-term effort to develop an Internet-based, searchable database of U.S. newspapers with descriptive information and select digitization of historic pages. Supported by NEH, this rich digital resource will be developed and permanently maintained at the Library of Congress and on the Library of Congress website. An NEH award program will fund the contribution of content from, eventually, all U.S. states and territories.[1]

Organization of the Site

The website has two major components: a digital database of digitized images of individual newspapers and a list of the existing copies of newspapers maintained by repositories throughout the U.S.

The Newspaper Digital Database

The number of scanned images of newspapers from throughout the United States is steadily growing and presently includes almost 5 million images. The earliest coverage begins in 1836 and has yet to include all of the U.S. states. But content is increasing rapidly and additional states are being added in due course. All of the pages of the digital database are searchable by individual words or the names of individuals.

  • In the basic search you can choose to search the entire archive or choose a state and/or a time period.
  • In the advanced search option, you have additional search choices that will narrow the responses. That includes selecting individual newspapers and further selections based on searching any phrase, an exact phrase or words in proximity.

US Newspaper Directory 1690 to the Present

The Newspaper Directory contains a listing of virtually all of the newspapers published in America since 1690. The online list is searchable by:

  • Location
  • Time period
  • Keywords
  • Frequency
  • Language
  • Ethnicity press
  • Labor press
  • Material type
  • Library of Congress Catalog Number (LCCN)

Or any combination of the above criteria.

A search returns a list of newspapers published according to the search criteria. Clicking on a specific newspaper shows a very complete catalog listing including

  • Title
  • Place of publication
  • Geographic coverage
  • Publisher
  • Dates of publication
  • Description
  • Frequency
  • Language
  • Subjects
  • Notes
  • LCCN (Library of Congress Catalog Number)
  • OCLC (Online Computer Library Center Number)
  • Preceding Titles
  • Succeeding Titles
  • Holdings

Clicking on the "Holdings" link for each individual newspaper takes you to a detailed listing of all of the repositories with holdings of that particular newspaper. For further information you will have to contact the particular repository listed.


  1. Chronicling America website "about" section, accessed 3/23/2012