Today’s lets talk about searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present.

Chronicling America at the Library of Congress gets lots of good press from me and other genealogists. This resource provides access to digitized U.S. newspapers over 320+ years.

An Overlooked Resource

The U.S. Newspaper Directory 1690-Present is part of the Chronicling America site. But for some reason it’s not very prominently featured by the Library of Congress.

Look at the example above of the main page. My eye always goes to the wonderful digitized front pages of newspapers just waiting to be read. What can be overlooked is the link in the upper right (red box added) for searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory 1690-Present. (Personally, I’ve always thought Google was a big success because of its clean uncluttered search page. Something to consider for Chronicling America’s page, LC?

Searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory

German-language U.S. newspapers are available in the U.S. Newspaper Directory and Chronicling America.

Finding Available Historic Newspapers

Searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory, you’ll find entries for all existing copies of newspapers in U.S. repositories. This directory helps you identify what titles exist for a specific place and time, and how to access these newspapers. Not all of them are digitized yet. But the directory tells you which newspapers exist and where they’re located. At this writing, there are 155,290 different newspapers in this database.

Searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory
Searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory

As seen above, you can limited your search to particular place and/or time. To locate specific titles, use keyword search. When searching the U.S. Newspaper Directory, structure your query using these categories alone or in combination:

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

Search results list specific newspapers with individual entries containing:

  • 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

Armed with specific titles, dates, and places for newspapers, search the holdings of commercial providers like and before you subscribe.