How To Work with Google News Archive

Updated on 01 Dec 2014

Updated 08 Sep 2017

Update 22 Apr 2018 – (see bottom for link to 2011 article about shutting down Google Project)

In my last posting I wrote about the date error on The Argus Press newspaper collection in Google News Archive list .

This posting will show you how to navigate this FREE collection.

Click on the images in this presentation to get a large view of the page.


Working with the newspaper collection can be difficult if you don’t know the options available.

In this posting I will discuss the following three options:

1. Browse this newspaper

2. Browse all newspapers

3. Show

– When you first go on to Google News Archive list you get this page.

Argus Blog 000
Google Page

You can then pick a newspaper to go to, such as Argus Press.

– When you click on the newspaper name “Argus Press” you get this page.

Argus Blog 000a
Pick Newspaper

This shows you the collection available to view. Notice the scroll arrows < > on top bar next to dates these arrows allow you to scroll for more issues if there are more issues.

Remember these are the years they say they have available, but the dates might be wrong so go into the “odd” years to make sure they are what Google says they are. “Odd” years will be obvious because they don’t fall within the main collection.

Argus Blog 003f  Decade Spread
Odd years

– When you pick a newspaper to go to, such as this Jul 1, 1972 issue of The Argus Press, you will get this page.

Argus Blog 001
Argus Newspaper

You can then pick a page from that particular issue or pick one of the top two (2) options: Browse this newspaper and Browse all newspapers.


 

If you pick a page you will be taken into the newspaper page but it will be the full page and hard to read.

To view the particular page close up just move your mouse around the full page until some line highlights and click on it. Or you can use the magnifier – + at top right of page. This will bring the page up to the screen so you can read it.

Either way, full page or close up, you can page through the issue of that newspaper.

The number of newspaper pages for that day is shown at top right. Some really old news papers had only 4 pages. Other newspapers will show a huge number of pages such as 65 but this is the number of photo copy images and it could mean that they photo copied several days of that particular newspaper. So don’t give up when you see a large number, page through the issue.


 

– If you want to see more issues of the same newspaper click on Browse this newspaper and you will get this page.

Argus Blog 001a
Browse this newspaper

Notice that you get the collection starting with the one you were just at.

– If you go back and pick the Browse all newspapers

Argus Blog 002
arrow to Browse all

you will get this page.

Argus Blog 002a
Google main list

Which is the original full list of newspapers. Notice it is the Google News Archive list, NOT the Enhanced Google News Archive or Enhanced Google News Archive – USA Only.


 

– Now let us go back to the page we got when we clicked on Browse this newspaper and you will notice on the top left an option which says “Show” which has a drop down menu.

Argus Blog 003
Show Box

This allows you to show what list you want to see from this collect; Decade, Year, Month, Week, Day. See the example pages below.

Argus Blog 003e Decade Spread
Decade
Argus Blog 003d Year Spread
Year
Argus Blog 003c Month Spread
Month
Argus Blog 003b Week Spread
Week
Argus Blog 003a Day Spread
Day

-The different options allow you to narrow your search of a particular date in time, and if they have that issue you can select it. You will notice that they may not have what you want and even if they say they do, be sure to check the date.

Argus Blog 003a Day Spread
Day

– I hope this gives you a better understanding of how to use the Google News Archive list collection and of course this is also how the Enhanced Google News Archive or Enhanced Google News Archive – USA Only. work.

Remember that the Enhanced Google News Archive or Enhanced Google News Archive – USA Only tables are my creation and were created to add the newspapers publication location to the existing Google News Archive list.

If you go into Google News Archive list you will not be able to go back to”Enhanced, or USA” through that Google News Archive page.

Thank You.

Jose from Clarkston, Michigan

Update 22 Apr 2018: Additional information: I was asked by Mardi, a tree owner, for a link to the Google News Archive, since she was getting errors trying to access it.

I did a Google Search for “Google News Archive” and got many hits; one of which was the original The Atlantic article I had seen in the past, Google Shuts Down Newspaper Archive Project
JARED KELLER MAY 20, 2011 —

The link is: https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2011/05/google-shuts-down-newspaper-archive-project/239239/

 

By Jose A Munoz

Retired General Motors designer who now works on subjects dealing with genealogy. I create trees using items I find in old Google News Archive newspapers and I contact other tree owners notifying them about the news item concerning their relative and send them a link to the tree I created. I post a screen print of the news item on the tree for others to copy, so that my work will benefit others. Occasionally, I will post about the tree I created or the item that I found, always with a "how to" in-bedded in the post. I want my blog posts to help others with their family trees or with their genealogy experiences.

33 comments

  1. Heya are using WordPress for your blog platform? I’m new to the blog world but I’m trying to get started and create my own. Do you need any html coding knowledge to make your own blog? Any help would be really appreciated!

  2. Thank you Asa for stopping by my blog. I write my own stuff and I am glad to hear that you like it. I just finished sending a message in an answer to your exact question so I will tell you the same thing:
    The great thing about using the web to get your message out is that you can link to other sites without having to write on the other people’s site or have them write on yours. This is not like the magazines or newspapers of the past where guest writing was the only way to get someone else’s ideas onto your rag. Here you can write about someone else’s work on your own site and refer the readers right back to the original. I just read a good piece on another blog and wrote up a story about it with links to the original. There was no need for me to be a guest on the person’s site or that person coming to my site to tell us his story.
    Good Luck.
    Take Care.
    Jose

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  6. Hello would you mind letting me know which hosting company you’re working with?
    I’ve loaded your blog in 3 different web browsers and I
    must say this blog loads a lot faster then most.
    Can you suggest a good hosting provider at a fair price? Thanks
    a lot, I appreciate it!

    1. Thank You for stopping by and for the comment. Sorry I can’t tell you what the difference is between browsers. I just use a site and don’t know what the background is.
      Jose from Clarkston, Michigan

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  8. I applaud you’re efforts to try and make a database but I and many others will not pay 100$ for Microsoft Office for this. Sorry Charlie! You can advertise Microsoft stuff elsewhere!

    1. Thank You for stopping by and for the comment. I never thought about the format and the fact that others may not have MS Word. What format can you use? I will see if I can put it into that format. As for Advertising for Microsoft… I WISH… If I was working for MS I sure wouldn’t be posting on a free site… Let me know what format you need and I will see what I can do.
      Jose from Clarkston, Michigan

  9. Sorry for being cheeky but it did seem rather weird that you only used a format that had to be ponied up. I have Word Pad and Adobe and I think some kind of open source viewer I downloaded a while ago but can’t’ find it again because Windows search sucks on 7.

    I miss the Windows that had the little dog as he searched a lot better and I could find both mains files and obsecure files.

  10. Ehh that didn’t make sense. I can’t type real well because it’s unusually humid here and it’s expected to get worse with PineApple Express rainfall. I can’t stand unusually warm nights here in the winter.

  11. Thanks for this.

    You’re definitely right about needing to poke around, as sometimes one date of a newspaper has got stuck in with the previous or next.

    One question, is there any way to search just within one newspaper of the archive?

    The options I see seem to be to search just the whole newspaper archive.

    1. Thanks again for stopping by my blog.
      Your question “is there any way to search just within one newspaper of the archive?” is very good because that is why I started putting stories on my blog. There is no way that I know of to search just one newspaper (one group “The Gazette” or one year “The Gazette 1879”). The whole problem with Google News Archive is that only the highlighted items get picked up in a search and not all words are highlighted. So even if you could search “The Gazette 1879 Oct 23” the only thing that would be picked up is what is highlighted.
      What have they highlighted?
      From what I can tell someone went in and reviewed the newspapers and highlighted random words or headlines. You go into a newspaper and run your mouse over the page and the highlighted items will appear. For instance, I just grabbed a newspaper out of the Canadian pile:
      https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=PDAgwb0ELvkC&dat=19460923&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
      and you can see how they highlighted the column headlines, and certain other things in the newspaper. “Gas Kills 3 Men In South Tragedy” is highlighted but not the three men. [Jean Baptiste Vaast, James T Graham, John Dickey] so if you were doing a search for uncle Dickey who died around Sep 23 of 1946 you would not find him unless you read the newspaper. My daily work is finding those stories that are not highlighted and not getting picked up by simple searches. This newspaper of Sep 23, 1946 is very well highlighted but still they did not highlight all the headlines. See “Ferintosh Citizen Killed at Jasper” which is on the same page as “Gas Kills…” where uncle Dickey is waiting to be found.

      Now lets look at another one. I select “Browse all newspapers” at the top of the Google News page where the title of the newspaper is located. This brings up the “Google News… table of newspapers arranged by name” I selected “The Advertiser… Aug 1, 1868” at random.
      https://news.google.com/newspapers?nid=-qiMcZ-2Z0YC&dat=18680801&printsec=frontpage&hl=en
      and I run my mouse over the pages and almost nothing lights up. The word “The” lights up… who ever reviewed this newspaper didn’t do as good of a job as our reviewer of the Sep 23 1946 newspaper. “Wood & Coal” light up, “The Advertiser” on page 3 lights up. Now if you click on the highlighted word a close up view of the page comes to the screen and you can read the news on the page… and that is how I do my work, page by page column by column. I think there are YouTube videos that explain Google News Archive a bit better. I will search on Yahoo for “Google News Archive search” and see what comes up.

      I just now found a Wiki page which gives you a better history of what I was trying to say here.
      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Google_News_Archive

      I hope this answered your question. The answer is “NO”.

      Oh, another thing I found out about the highlights on old newspaper is that if the page is turned on its side then nothing on that page is highlighted. Maybe they have machines that scan and highlight at the same time and so if they can’t recognized a printed letter they don’t highlight… I will have to do some research on this after I do the French Only Canada, the Spanish Only…

      Thank You.
      Jose A. Munoz, M.Ed
      from Clarkston, Michigan
      Blog: https://newspaperproject2012.wordpress.com/

      1. Yes, the highlighting on articles is pretty random. When I want to link to an article on a page, if my article hasn’t been highlighted by Google, then I’ll look for the closest highlighted article. I figure then if someone clicks the link, it will at least get them to the right page and within sight hopefully of the article.

        Have noticed the problem too with pages on their sides. It’s a shame Google doesn’t support this service anymore as some of these issues would be easily fixed by them if flagged. The problem of editions for one date getting stuck on the back of another date is particularly unfortunate, as some people are bound to miss them altogether.

        In the end of the day, it’s a great thing Google did in the time the project was active, so have to be grateful for what’s there, even if it’s imperfect. Personally, I clip any articles of interest as who knows whether Google might one day take down this service. Doubtful, I suppose, but never know.

        To clip an article, I just take a screenshot and then crop it. You lose the OCR (text searchability) that way though, but I don’t see any other option. Google would have had to allow a download page as PDF option for the OCR to be preserved.

      1. I think this may only work for the non-archive portion of Google News. When I tried it on very old dates, nothing turned up, so I don’t think it’s searching the Newspaper Archive.

      2. If you do this search you will see that the command “site:news.google.com/newspapers” will find thing in news archive. I tried this search: Legislative Council 1855 site:news.google.com/newspapers

      3. Hmmm, but that’s really just the same as searching at that page (ie, https://news.google.com/newspapers).

        Either way, when you get to the search results page, I thought maybe could click on “Search tools” then change “Any time” to a date range.

        But when I tried it on a results from the Newspaper Archive, it doesn’t seem to work.

        So as per your example, can try narrow to a given year by putting that year as a search term, but don’t see any way to get a date range (eg, 1880-1890) out of the Newspaper Archive.

        I went looking for Google Search “operators”, of which there are many like at the link below, but don’t see any for date.

        https://bynd.com/news-ideas/google-advanced-search-comprehensive-list-google-search-operators/

      4. Thank you for the information, your work will help others to avoid that search problems.

  12. The reason I mentioned rude replies is because most forum communities even ones that were formally good have gone that route of belittling newbies or being total a-holes instead of being on topic.

    I can’t stand those forums and these forums are starting to wonder why their community is dying but blames facebook/twitter. One one such thread a person pointed out what I went thru that forums have become cliched and isolated so therefore drive away new members and facebook is only a small issue but most people were not getting the equation thru their heads for some reason.

    Bad forum leadership + Bullies = stagnant community.

    1. We are of the same mind… I too have joined and left FB group pages when the bullies started showing their hateful comments. I just don’t understand why people are like that. Thanks for the comment.

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