Devon Noel Lee
5 Newspaper.com Search Tips All Researchers Need to Know
Newspapers.com has a worldwide collection of papers to help you find your ancestors in the printed press. Use these five search tips to use
this platform to the fullest.
What Newspapers Does Newspapers.com Have?
When deciding which newspaper platform to use, one of the questions people ask is, "does this platform have the newspapers in the area I am researching?"
Click on the Menu Bar.
Click "Browse" under Find by Location.
Select a country
If available, select a state or province.
If available, click on a city.
Select a Newspaper Title.
Select an issue by date.
If you don't have an account yet, this process is available to help you review Newspapers.com's collection. If you have an account, you can read the papers and find discoveries for your ancestors.
Map the Newspapers Collections
Now, this new feature I discovered recently. You can search newspapers by using a map. This feature comes in handy if you know your ancestors lived in a particular area, but you need more information.
The Newspapers.com map will isolate the newspapers that serve the area as you zoom in and out of places in the United States, western Canada, the United Kingdom, and southeastern Australia. Be sure to watch this video to see how to do this.
Let's say you have ancestors from North Carolina. You know that they're living somewhere near Wilmington. As you zoom in, you will see newspapers for Southport and Wilmington. Since Southport and Wilmington are relatively close, perhaps these newspapers serve each other.
It's also possible that your ancestor lived near Wilmington, but Newspapers.com doesn't have a newspaper that serves that area. Are you out of luck?
No, because the map feature will show you papers published nearby that might have articles for the area your ancestor lived. Not every community had a printing press, so some newspapers served multiple surrounding areas.
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Using the Papers view, you can filter Newspapers.com entries in other ways.
Let's say you know your ancestor lived in Salem. So, type Salem in the "paper name keywords" search box.
You'll notice papers in:
Use the sliders to reduce the publication ranges before navigating into specific papers.
Filter Search Results by Article Type
Thanks to the partnership with Ancestry.com, Newspapers.com now has a set of articles that you can filter by type. The currently available types are obituaries and marriage articles.
Type your search terms on the Search page. For example, I used George Townley.
You'll see some filters below the search box and above the search results.
Click on "Results by type."
You'll see filters for obituaries and marriages.
You can then use the map and date sliders on the right side of the page to further filter your results.
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Add Aditional Information to Your Clippings
This next cool feature improves your post-search experience. The implementation of this option isn't necessarily universal but keep an eye out for it.
You will see the following statement when you click on a clipping (particularly an obituary or marriage news bit). "These facts were pulled from this record by a computer and may not be accurate."
Review the details that the computer extracted and then reread the article. If you find additional information, you can enhance the indexed information.
First, you can edit any information about the primary person(s) in the article. For example, you can edit the person's name, gender, residence, or age.
Next, you can add information not extracted, including person fact, birth, marriage, death, or burial.
Only add information in this additional information section that actually appears in the clipping.
At this time, I don't know how to add additional individuals or additional information about the secondary persons listed in the articles.
Also, in the future, Newspapers.com seems to be working on allowing us to improve the OCR scans of the documents. So I'm looking forward to that feature
Watch this video to see how to do all of these search tricks.