10 Smart Tips to Do Newspaper Research

What do you do once you gain access to a newspaper that may contain information about your ancestor?

Successful Newspaper Tips

  • Comb through each issue that was published during the life of your ancestor. Consider also the time your family lived in the area.
  • Do not assume that news about your ancestor was only covered in the local paper. If your family migrated to different areas, you may find obituaries or other announcements included in newspapers where they used to live.
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  • Browse through issues page by page. You will become more familiar with the people and local history of an area this way. Do not always relying on searching names in indexes alone.
  • Search for articles or announcements about births, deaths, and marriages.
  • The society section may help you to know when family members come to visit or travel to other places.
  • Search out articles on your ancestor’s church and church related events.
  • Read about the history of local events especially wars, local politics, state of the economy, crimes, and epidemics.
  • Search the names of parents, spouses, children, siblings and every known extended family member. If available, compare the city directory that matches the year of the newspaper issue you are searching. This will help you know which family members might appear in any given issue.

Finding Historical Newspapers Online

You can find access to historical newspapers through local county and university libraries. Many newspapers have been made available through online databases at:  


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To get your copy:

Genealogy Book to Research Ancestry – Global Publishing Solutions

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