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Friday, November 10, 2023

Genealogy Tips for Beginners: Best Genealogy Newspaper Sites


    Genealogy research is an incredibly rewarding and often deeply personal journey. Whether you're just beginning to explore your family history or you're a seasoned genealogist, one invaluable resource you should consider incorporating into your research toolkit is newspaper archives. In this blog post, we'll delve into the world of newspaper archives for genealogy research and discuss why they are such a treasure trove of information. We'll also explore some of the best newspaper archive products available to help you uncover the fascinating stories and hidden gems within your family tree.

    old newspapers

    Why Newspaper Archives for Genealogy Research?

    A Glimpse into the Past
    Newspapers have been a crucial part of our history for centuries. They chronicle the daily lives, events, and stories of communities, big and small, across the world. By tapping into newspaper archives, you gain access to an abundance of primary source material that can provide you with a fascinating glimpse into the past. These archives often contain vital information, such as birth and death notices, marriage announcements, obituaries, and much more.

    Rich Historical Context
    Newspapers don't just provide names and dates; they offer a rich historical context that can help you understand the lives your ancestors led. You can discover their social circles, their involvement in local organizations, and even their political affiliations. This context can breathe life into your genealogy research, helping you see your ancestors as real individuals with unique stories.

    Unearth Hidden Stories
    One of the most exciting aspects of using newspaper archives for genealogy research is the chance to uncover hidden stories. You may stumble upon a scandal, a heroic act, or an unexpected connection between your ancestors and prominent historical figures. These discoveries can add a layer of intrigue and excitement to your family history.

    Solve Family Mysteries
    Genealogists often encounter mysteries and brick walls in their research. Newspaper archives can be the key to solving these mysteries. Did your great-great-uncle disappear without a trace? Was there a family feud that led to estrangements? The answers may lie within the pages of old newspapers, waiting to be unearthed.

    Preserve Family History
    By using newspaper archives, you're not only uncovering your family's history but also helping to preserve it. These archives are a valuable resource for future generations of your family, ensuring that the stories and legacies of your ancestors are not lost to time.

    Best Newspaper Archive Products for Genealogy Research

    Now that we've explored why newspaper archives are a goldmine for genealogy research, let's dive into some of the best newspaper archive products available. These platforms have digitized and indexed countless newspapers, making it easier than ever to explore your family's past. is a household name in the world of genealogy research, and for good reason. In addition to their extensive collection of genealogical records, they offer a comprehensive newspaper archive. Ancestry's newspaper collection spans over 300 years and includes millions of pages from newspapers across the United States and around the world.

    Try a 14-day free trial today with Ancestry®

    Key Features:

    Search by name, location, date, and keyword to find relevant articles.
    Access to various newspapers, including historical obituaries, birth announcements, and more.
    The " Basic" subscription is included with Ancestry's All Access subscription., owned by, is a dedicated newspaper archive platform. It offers access to a vast collection of newspapers from the 18th century to the present. Their user-friendly interface and powerful search features make it a top choice for genealogists.

    Key Features:

    Over 15,000 newspapers from the United States and around the world.
    Browse or search by name, location, date, and keyword.
    Collaborative features to connect with other researchers and share discoveries.

    Chronicling America

    If your genealogy research focuses on American ancestors, Chronicling America is an invaluable resource. This free platform, provided by the Library of Congress, offers access to historic American newspapers from 1789 to 1963. It's a fantastic resource for tracing the lives and stories of your U.S.-based ancestors.

    Key Features:

    A user-friendly search interface that allows you to explore newspapers by state, date, and keyword.
    High-quality digitized images of original newspapers.
    Detailed information about each newspaper title and its publication history.


    GenealogyBank is another premium newspaper archive product designed with genealogists in mind. It boasts an extensive collection of historical newspapers, obituaries, and other documents. While it requires a subscription, the wealth of information it provides can be well worth the investment.

    Key Features:

    Search by name, location, and keyword for articles, obituaries, and more.
    Access to an expansive collection of newspapers, dating back to the 1600s.
    Frequent updates and new additions to the archive.

    Unlocking Your Family's Story: A Deep Dive into GenealogyBank and What the Reviews Reveal


    Findmypast is a comprehensive genealogy platform that includes access to an extensive collection of British and Irish newspapers. If your research takes you across the pond, this platform is an excellent choice for uncovering your family's history.

    Key Features:

    Search British and Irish newspapers by name, location, date, and keyword.
    Explore regional and national publications, including obituaries and other genealogical content.
    Access to a wide range of other genealogy records and resources.

    Trove (National Library of Australia)

    For those with Australian ancestors, Trove, provided by the National Library of Australia, is a must-visit online resource. It offers access to millions of newspaper articles, as well as books, images, and more. Best of all, it's entirely free to use.

    Key Features:

    Extensive collection of Australian newspapers and other historical materials.
    Advanced search capabilities, allowing you to refine your queries for precise results.
    User-contributed content, making it a collaborative platform for genealogy research.


    MyHeritage is a genealogy platform known for its DNA testing services, but it also provides access to an impressive collection of historical newspapers. With a strong international focus, it's a valuable resource for researchers looking to trace their roots worldwide.

    Key Features:

    Search historical newspapers by name, location, and keyword.
    Access to a global collection of newspapers, including obituaries and birth announcements.
    Integration with MyHeritage's family tree builder for a holistic genealogy experience.


    Elephind takes a unique approach to newspaper archives by acting as a search engine for historical newspapers. It scours the web for newspaper content from various sources, making it a useful tool for discovering newspapers that may not be available on other dedicated platforms.

    Key Features:

    Search millions of pages from newspapers worldwide in one place.
    Discover obscure and lesser-known newspapers that may not be widely digitized.
    Access to a variety of newspaper archives, both free and subscription-based.

    Tips for Effective Newspaper Archive Research

    Now that you have an overview of some of the best newspaper archive products for genealogy research, let's discuss some essential tips to make your exploration more efficient and fruitful.

    Start with What You Know
    Before diving into newspaper archives, begin with what you already know about your family history. Create a basic family tree, noting names, dates, and locations. This will provide a solid foundation for your newspaper research.

    Use Specific Keywords
    When searching newspaper archives, be as specific as possible with your keywords. Include full names, locations, and relevant dates. If you're looking for an obituary, include "obituary" in your search terms.

    Be Patient and Persistent
    Genealogy research, including newspaper archive exploration, often requires patience and persistence. Don't get discouraged if you don't find what you're looking for on your first try. Keep refining your search and trying different keywords.

    Explore Beyond Obituaries
    While obituaries are valuable sources of information, don't limit your search to just these. Look for articles related to family events, community involvement, and even advertisements, which can provide insights into your ancestors' lives.

    Collaborate with Other Researchers
    Genealogy is a collaborative pursuit, and many hands make light work. Share your findings and questions with fellow genealogists on forums, social media groups, and websites dedicated to family history research.

    Verify and Cross-Reference
    When you discover information in newspaper archives, always verify it through multiple sources if possible. Cross-referencing ensures the accuracy of your findings and helps avoid errors in your family tree.

    Save and Organize Your Discoveries
    As you find relevant articles and information, save and organize them systematically. Digital folders and genealogy software can help you keep track of your discoveries and their sources.

    Stay Up-to-Date
    Newspaper archives are continually expanding as more publications are digitized. Check back with your chosen platforms regularly to see if new newspapers or articles have been added that might benefit your research.


    Newspaper archives are a treasure trove for genealogists, offering a window into the lives and stories of our ancestors. Whether you're a beginner or an experienced researcher, the wealth of information available in historical newspapers can enrich your understanding of your family's history and bring your ancestors to life.

    By using newspaper archive products like,, Chronicling America, GenealogyBank, Findmypast, Trove, MyHeritage, and Elephind, you can embark on a fascinating journey to uncover hidden family stories, solve mysteries, and preserve the history of your ancestors for generations to come.

    Remember to start with what you know, use specific keywords, be patient and persistent, explore various types of articles, collaborate with fellow researchers, verify your findings, save and organize your discoveries, and stay up-to-date with the latest additions to newspaper archives. Genealogy research is a labor of love, and with the right tools and resources, you can unearth the remarkable stories within your family tree and connect with your past in ways you never imagined. Happy researching!

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