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Newspaper Guide: Ethnic Newspaper Collections

Newspapers in the MSU Libraries

Electronic Resources : Newspapers provides links to both individual newspapers alphabetically as well as links to some of the more popular collections available to the MSU community and to visitors to the MSU Main Library.

Student Newspapers

Special Collections holds four newspapers produced by the African American students at MSU as part of the Ethnic Studies Collection: The Grapevine Journal, People's Choice, Speak, and The Legacy.

Current Ethnic Newspaper Collections (Electronic)

Alt-PressWatch (Proquest) : Full-text database of selected newspapers, magazines and journals of the alternative and independent press. Coverage complements the reporting in the mainstream press.

Ethnic NewsWatch (Proquest) : The Ethnic NewsWatch database provides the full text of ethnic and minority newspapers, magazines, and journals in the United States. Coverage varies by paper, but goes as far back as 1960 for some publications.

Access World News, Research Collection (NewsBank)  This comprehensive news collection (1903 to date)  is ideal for exploring issues and events at the local, regional, national and international level. Its diverse source types include print and online-only newspapers, blogs, newswires, journals, broadcast transcripts and videos. Use it to explore a specific event or to compare a wide variety of viewpoints on topics such as politics, business, health, sports, cultural activities and people. Content is easily searched and sorted through an intuitive, map-based interface.  Click on the Ethnic Sources tab, to produce a list of 79 possibilities.

U.S. Newsstream: Formerly called Proquest Gannett Newsstand, provides access to Hispanic Newsstream, the largest collection of leading Hispanic newspapers, news wires, websites and blogs in full text from US publishers in both Spanish and English including El Diario/La Prensa (New York City), La Opinión (Los Angeles), La Prensa (San Antonio) and Extra (Chicago).

Historical Ethnic Newspaper Collections (Electronic)

19th Century African American Newspapers via Accessible Archives : This enormous collection of African - American Newspapers contains a wealth of information about the cultural life and history during the 1800s, and is rich with first-hand reports of the major events and issues of the day, including the Mexican War, Presidential and congressional addresses, Congressional abstracts, business and commodity markets, the humanities, world travel and religion. The featured newspapers also contain large numbers of early biographies, vital statistics, essays and editorials, poetry and prose, and advertisements all of which embody the African-American experience. Starting with the Freedom`s Journal in 1827 and continuing in chronological order with the addition of 10 to 12 million words of new text each year (downloaded monthly), this database will ultimately contain the complete text of the major African-American newspapers published in the United States during the 19th century. Never before has such important original source material - written by African- Americans for African-Americans - been readily available for research and fresh interpretation by historians, sociologists, educators and students. Featured newspapers include: Freedom's Journal, The Colored American (Weekly Advocate), The North Star, The National Era, Provincial Freeman, Frederick Douglass Paper, The Christian Recorder.

African American Experience in Ohio: 1850-1920 (1843-1923) : Selected articles from a number of African American newspapers published in Ohio.

African American Newspapers, 1827 - 1998 (Readex).  (Series 1 and 2 available via this link).  Provides online access to approximately 270 U.S. newspapers chronicling a century and a half of the African American experience. This unique collection features papers from more than 35 states—including many rare and historically significant 19th century titles.  Beginning with Freedom's Journal (NY)—the first African American newspaper published in the United States—the titles in this resource include The Colored Citizen (KS), Arkansas State Press, Rights of All (NY), Wisconsin Afro-American, New York Age, L'Union (LA), Northern Star and Freeman's Advocate (NY), Richmond Planet, Cleveland Gazette, The Appeal (MN) and hundreds of others from every region of the U.S.  African American Newspapers, 1827-1998 offers researchers valuable primary sources for such diverse disciplines as cultural, literary and social history; ethnic studies and more. Users can compare and contrast African American views on practically every major theme of the American past. Coverage spans life in the Antebellum South; the spread of abolitionism; growth of the Black church; the Emancipation Proclamation; the Jim Crow Era; the Great Migration to northern cities, the West and Midwest in search of greater opportunity; rise of the N.A.A.C.P.; the Harlem Renaissance; the Civil Rights movement; political and economic empowerment and more. Teachers and students will find firsthand perspectives on notable Americans from Frederick Douglass and Booker T. Washington to W.E.B. Du Bois and Martin Luther King, Jr., as well as obituaries, advertisements, editorials and illustrations.

AFRO-American Newspapers Black History Archives.  In cooperation with Google, the AFRO-American newspapers are making available over 100 years of Black history from the late nineteenth century on available from the pages of the Afro-American, the Afro-American Ledger, Baltimore Afro-American, and the Washington Afro-American newspapers.  The site includes original page views of complete editions of the newspaper dating back to the early 1900s and in-depth coverage of important stories such as the events of the arrests and national spectacle surrounding Scottsboro Boys trials, the entertainment coverage of Black movies stars such as Dorothy Dandridge, the Army's use of the Tuskegee Airmen (Fighting 99th) in World War II, coverage of the Little Rock 9 Integration in 1954 and many other events that helped to shape the black community.

Archives Unbound : Japanese American Relocation Camp Newspapers (1942-1945) (Gale). : Japanese-American Relocation Camp Newspapers: Perspectives on Day-to-Day Life offers scholars rare first-person accounts and seldom-heard voices. By recording the concerns and challenges of the interned Japanese-Americans, this collection delivers new levels of depth and credibility. Use this unique digital resource to support research in Asian studies, ethnic studies, social history, journalism, law, conflict studies, World War II studies and more....In the months following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. government was besieged with demands that action be taken against citizens of Japanese descent – motivated by the fear that Japanese-Americans would become a fifth column for the Japanese military command. By April 1942, more than 100,000 persons – resident aliens and American citizens alike – were moved to relocation centers run by the War Relocation Authority.  Many of the 25 titles in this collection are complete or substantially complete. Editions have been carefully collated and omissions are noted. Although articles in these files frequently appear in Japanese, most of the papers are in English or in dual text....For more information, download a Product Fact Sheet [pdf, 633 KB]

Atlanta Daily World (1931-2003) via Proquest

Black Studies Center : For more information about each Black newspapers in the Chadwyck Healey/Proquest compilation,  click here.  To find the search engine, click here.

  • Atlanta Daily World. roughly 1931-1932 through 2002-2003 (purchased)
  • Baltimore Afro-American, roughly 1893-1894 through 1985-1986
  • Chicago Defender, roughly 1910-1911 through 1974-1975 (purchased)
  • Chicago's Daily Defender, 1956-1957 through 1974-1975
  • Los Angeles Sentinel, 1934-1935 through 2004-2005 (purchased)
  • New York Amsterdam News, 1922-1923 through 1993-1994 (purchased)
  • Norfolk New Journal and Guide, 1916-1917 through 2002-2003
  • Philadelphia Tribune, 1912-1913 through 2000-2001
  • Pittsburgh Courier, 1911-1912 through 2001-2002 (purchased) 

The Carolina Indian Voice Now Available. “The Carolina Indian Voice is one of North Carolina’s oldest American Indian newspapers. It served members of the Lumbee Tribe living in Robeson County including the town of Pembroke, which is the seat of the Lumbee tribe of North Carolina, as well as the home of The University of North Carolina at Pembroke, a historically American Indian University.” The new run covers 1977-1996, and before the project had 1996-2005, so it looks like all that’s missing is the early run from 1973-1977.

Chicago Defender (1905-1975) via Proquest : "The Defender was the leading African American news publication before World War I, focusing on issues significant to its audience, including covering the abandonment of the segregated South for work in the more industrialized North, reporting on the 1919 Red Summer Riots, and editorializing for antilynching legislation." 

Chronicling America : Historic American Newspapers (1860-1920) : Chronicling America allows you to search and read newspaper pages from 1860-1922 and find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress as part of the National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP). Over a period of approximately 20 years, NDNP will create a national, digital resource of historically significant newspapers published between 1836 and 1922 from all U.S. states and territories. At present only newspapers from Arizona, California, District of Columbia, Florida, Hawaii, Illinois, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Texas, Utah, Virginia, and Washington are available full text.  For a brief list of some of the topics covered by Chronicling America, click here.  For a list of newspapers covered, click here. Chronicling America also offers an interesting new feature called 100 Years Ago Today.  Note:  if you click on the All Digitized Newspapers tab, you can select by ethnicity or language.

Ethnic American Newspapers from the Balch Collection, 1799 - 1971 (Readex).  Over the next year, Readex will be making a wide variety of historical ethnic newspapers available via this site.  Featuring more than 130 fully searchable newspapers in 10 languages from 25 states — including many rare 19th-century titles — this online collection provides extensive coverage of many of the most influential ethnic groups in U.S. history.  With an emphasis on Americans of Czech, French, German, Hungarian, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Jewish, Lithuanian, Polish, Slovak and Welsh descent, this unique resource will enable students and scholars to explore often-overlooked aspects of this nation's history, politics and culture.

Freedom's Journal (1827-1829) :  The first African-American owned and operated newspaper published in the United States, published weekly.   Freedom's Journal provided international, national, and regional information on current events and contained editorials declaiming slavery, lynching, and other injustices. The Journal also published biographies of prominent African-Americans and listings of births, deaths, and marriages in the African-American New York community. Freedom's Journal circulated in 11 states, the District of Columbia, Haiti, Europe, and Canada.  The newspaper employed subscription agents. One of these, David Walker, in 1829 published the first of four articles that called for rebellion.  Walker's Appeal stated that ".it is no more harm for you to kill the man who is trying to kill you than it is for you to take a drink of water," this bold attack was widely read. Walker distributed copies of his pamphlet into the South, where it was widely banned.  All 103 issues available : Vol 1 (March 1827-March 1828) and Vol. 2 (April 1828-March 1829).  Courtesy of the Wisconsin Historical Society.

Hispanic American Newspapers, 1808-1980 (Readex).   Represents the single largest compilation of Spanish-language newspapers printed in the U.S. during the 19th and 20th centuries. The distinctive collection features hundreds of Hispanic American newspapers, including many long scattered and forgotten titles published in the 19th century. These Hispanic American newspapers reflect a long tradition of Spanish-language press in the western hemisphere. In the United States, the Hispanic press has played a vital role in the lives of immigrants, exiles and native Hispanic peoples alike. Often illustrated with photographic documentation, Hispanic American newspapers reveal the rich history of a people who have long resided in and contributed to the American public sphere. For more than two centuries, they have united Spanish speakers and preserved their cultural heritage through news, editorials and literature as well as by providing leadership, solidifying communities and spearheading social movements. They have covered every major theme in American history and culture and reported on events in Spanish-speaking countries not always available in traditional U.S. newspapers.

Historic Mexican and Mexican American Press (University of Arizona).  Documents and showcases historic Mexican and Mexican American publications published in Tucson, El Paso, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and Sonora, Mexico from the mid-1800s to the 1970s.  The publications capture the historical record of the Mexican and Mexican American community during significant times ranging from the Gadsden Purchase, the Mexican Revolution, the Great Depression and Mexican repatriation, World War II and the Bracero program, and the Chicano Civil Rights Movement. Furthermore, the materials within the collection are optimized for online information seeking and archived for long-term digital preservation.  Highlights of the collection include:

  • La Estrella de Occidente, a state-run Mexican newspaper that is the earliest publication in the collection from 1855;
  • El Tucsonense, the longest running Spanish Language newspaper in Tucson;
  • Coraje!, published in Tucson by the Mexican-American Liberation Committee;
  • El Independiente, a student-produced newspaper serving South Tucson published since 1976 by the UA School of Journalism and also the latest publication date in the collection, from 2004;
  • Americas 2001, a magazine published in Los Angeles by Roberto Cintli Rodriguez; and 
  • El Pueblo, a weekly newspaper in Spanish and English published in Tucson from 1968-1969

Indianapolis Recorder (1899-2005) : Free access provided by the Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and Indianapolis Recorder newspapers.  The archive is not complete; issues from 1917-1925 and January-April 1932 are missing. You can do a text search, browse by year, or do a full browse of the archive (over 5200 items!)

Japanese American Relocation Camp Newspapers (Gale).   Part of Archives Unbound collection.  Japanese-American Relocation Camp Newspapers: Perspectives on Day-to-Day Life offers scholars rare first-person accounts and seldom-heard voices. By recording the concerns and challenges of the interned Japanese-Americans, this collection delivers new levels of depth and credibility. Use this unique digital resource to support research in Asian studies, ethnic studies, social history, journalism, law, conflict studies, World War II studies and more....In the months following the attack on Pearl Harbor, the U.S. government was besieged with demands that action be taken against citizens of Japanese descent – motivated by the fear that Japanese-Americans would become a fifth column for the Japanese military command. By April 1942, more than 100,000 persons – resident aliens and American citizens alike – were moved to relocation centers run by the War Relocation Authority. Many of the 25 titles in this collection are complete or substantially complete. Editions have been carefully collated and omissions are noted. Although articles in these files frequently appear in Japanese, most of the papers are in English or in dual text....For more information, download a Product Fact Sheet [pdf, 633 KB]

Los Angeles Sentinel (1934-2005) via Proquest

New York Amsterdam News (1922-1993) via Proquest

Pacific Citizen Digital Archives (1929-1955) via California State Library.  The Japanese American Citizens League hopes to finish digitizing more issues through 2009 by the end of 2014.

Pittsburgh Courier (1911-2002) via Proquest

Pittsburgh Jewish Newspaper Project : Makes available more than one hundred years of Jewish newspapers published in Pittsburgh. Digitized page images capture daily life in Pittsburgh from the 1890s to the present, with particular focus on Jewish communities. Life-cycle events, synagogue and organizational activities, arts, entertainment, and sports events are presented in detail. The collection offers extensive coverage of local, national, and international news, often from a perspective largely missing from the mainstream press.  The Pittsburgh Jewish Newspaper Project is composed of the Jewish Criterion (1895-1962), the American Jewish Outlook (1934-1962), the Jewish Chronicle (1962-present), and the Y-JCC series (1926-1975).

Proquest Historical Newspapers. A portal providing links to

  • Ethnic Newswatch
  • Proquest Civil War
  • Atlanta Daily World, 1931-2003
  • Chicago Defender, 1910-1975

Signal of Liberty (1841-1848) : Theodore Foster and Rev. Guy Beckley of Ann Arbor, Michigan, launched the Signal of Liberty in April 1841 and managed to go to press nearly every week. Foster and Beckley were strong abolitionists who wrote in the Signal of Liberty of helping people escaping from slavery. The editors interviewed self-emancipated men and women, hoping to arouse sympathy for abolitionism. The events and movements described in the Signal of Liberty help us understand the issues that led people to resist slavery, change their churches and political parties, and fight for freedom.  Digitized by the Ann Arbor District Library.

Current Ethnic Newspapers (Print)

The following titles are collected and retained for anywhere from two weeks to 3 months
-- next to the Current Periodicals on 2 West.

Afro-American (Baltimore)

Chicago Defender (Also receive Weekend Chicago Defender)

Forward (New York, Jewish)

Michigan Chronicle

New York Amsterdam News

Ethnic Microfilm Newspapers Available from the Center for Research Libraries

Scholars and researchers from CRL member institutions (such as Michigan State University) have free and unlimited use of the CRL collections through interlibrary loan via their libraries. The loan period is unlimited, but is subject to possible recall notice. To identify what is available try searching the Center for Research Libraries online catalog.  Browse by country, state, U.S. and Canadian ethnic newspapers, or by Civilian Conservation Corps.  Here is a brief list of some of the featured collections:

The African-American Press Collection. From the Christian recorder, published in Philadelphia in the 1850s, to the Chicago Defender, still very much alive, the African-American press has provided first person coverage of the concerns, interests and achievements of African-Americans throughout the United States. The Center has a “critical mass” of over two hundred titles.

Black newspapers. In 1965, the Center began subscribing to about 20 papers intended primarily for Black communities in major U.S. cities. The Center has retrospective holdings of some Black newspapers and maintains current subscriptions to either newsprint or microfilm editions of the following titles (listed under their current titles):

State
City
Publication
Alabama Birmingham Birmingham world (#2258369)
California Los Angeles Los Angeles sentinel (#9505770)
Florida Jacksonville Florida star (#2261130)
Illinois Chicago Muslim journal (#12063707)
Indiana Indianapolis Indianapolis recorder (#8797400)
Louisiana Shreveport Shreveport sun (#20606995)
Maryland Baltimore Afro-American (#7642696)
Massachusetts Roxbury Bay state banner (#6749070)
Michigan Detroit Michigan chronicle (#2264134)
Missouri Kansas City Call (#16736831)
New York New York New York Amsterdam news (#13416782)
North Carolina Durham Carolina times (#2259007)
Ohio Cleveland Call and post (#9964681)
Pennsylvania Philadelphia Philadelphia tribune (#2266077)
Tennessee Memphis Tri-state defender (#9578018)
Virginia Norfolk Journal and guide (#6836057)

Ethnic Press Database. Thousands of volumes of newspapers were produced in the U.S. by ethnic communities from the Civil War to the late 20th century. The papers mirror the lives, values and everyday concerns of America’s various immigrant communities, from the Chinese- and Polish-Americans of 19th Century Chicago to more recently established communities of immigrants from Southeast Asia and the Middle East.

The Center has retrospective holdings of hundreds of ethnic titles and maintains current subscriptions to either newsprint or microfilm editions of the following newspapers (listed under their current titles):

Ethnicity
Publication
Armenian Hayrenik (Boston) (#8761016)
Carpatho-Russian Truth (Philadelphia) (#27328014)
Chinese Mei-chou Hua mei jih pao (New York) (#8925180)
Hua chiao jih pao (New York) ) (#13925369)
Lien ho jih pao (New York) (#9926281)
Czech Hlas naroda (Chicago) (#9578031)
Nedelni hlasatel (Chicago) (#39392562)
Novy svet (Cleveland) (#9522838)
Danish Danske pioneer (Elmwood Park, IL) (#9665848)
Finnish New Yorkin uutiset (#9335208)
Flemish Gazette van Detroit (#9353749)
French France-Amerique (New York) (#3927122)
German Abendpost und Milwaukee deutsche Zeitung (Chicago) (#9642195)
Amerika Woche (Skokie, IL) (#9328374)
Aufbau (New York) (#2251108)
New Yorker Staats-Zeitung (#25450500)
Greek Hellenikos typos (Chicago) (#9425497)
Ethnikos kerux (New York) (#6836811)
Hungarian Amerikai Magyar nepszava (Cleveland) (#2257472)
Szabadsag (Cleveland) (#2268340)
Italian Italian tribune (Warren, MI) (#9836411)
Post gazette (Boston) (#9529221)
Japanese Nichibei jiji (San Francisco) (#9335122)

Nichi Bei Times (#4601742)
Pacific Citizen (#1774036)
Rafu Shimpo (Los Angeles) (#12939028)

Lithuanian Draugas (Chicago) (#9426502)
Naujienos (Chicago) (#9273424)
Sandara (Chicago) (#9493846)
Norwegian Norway times (Brooklyn) (#10802915)
Western Viking (Seattle) (#9665786)
Polish Dziennik zwiazkowy (Chicago) (#9357895)
Portuguese Jornal Portugues (Alameda) (#5686672)
Russian Novoe russkoe slovo (New York) (#2265277)
Serbo-Croatian Hrvatski Tjednik Danica (Chicago)
Slovak Bratstvo (Wilkes-Barre, PA) (#10443362)
Jednota (Cleveland) (#1695479)
Narodne Noviny (Pittsburgh) (#2264538)
Slovenian Ameriska domovina (Cleveland) (#4409084)
Prosveta (Chicago) (#9509957)
Swedish California Veckoblad (Los Angeles) (#9304061)
Norden (Brooklyn) (#9473030)
Nordstjernan (New York) (#24728237)
Svenska Amerikaneren tribunen (Chicago) (#9642253)
New Vestkusten (San Francisco) (#29513598)
Ukrainian Ameryka (Philadelphia) (#7120828)
Svoboda (Jersey City, NJ) (#1766932)
Narodna volia (Scranton) (#2264535)
Welsh Drych a'r Columbia (De Pere, WI) (#14404267)
Yiddish Forverts (New York) (#9836450)

Subject Guide

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