Newspapers – Supplement Your Research

There have been many posts and articles on the importance of newspapers in your genealogical research.  It really cannot be stressed enough.  Not only can it give you dates, places, etc., but it adds dimension as well.

Case in point:

William Morgan, my great-grandfather.

I had this picture of him:

William Morgan, at the Larson Farm

I had asked what had happened to his left hand and family members said that he had had an accident cleaning his gun.  That was all we knew.

From an account in the Kankakee (IL) Gazette:

“Wm. Morgan, while hunting one day last week, met with a great misfortune.  His gun exploded, tearing his left hand so badly that three fingers and half of the hand to the wrist had to be amputated.  Mr. Morgan, with four friends, were some six miles east of Essex, and as the roads were in bad condition, their horse gave out before they were half way to Essex, and he might have died from loss of blood, but for the kindly aid of some farmer who brought out his own horse and carriage and, it is said, drove four miles in 15 minutes.”

It was written as a hunting accident, not cleaning his gun as was passed down.  I also know that the accident occurred sometime during the week of April 7th, because the article was written on Thursday, Apr 18, 1895.

The picture, above was taken much, much later – probably in the late 1910’s/early 1920’s.

It never hurts to take a look at the newspapers!

About Our Lineage

I invite you to join me as I share my journey of successes, surprises, and of course, disappointments. All belong to my passion called Genealogy.
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13 Responses to Newspapers – Supplement Your Research

  1. T. Strong says:

    Thanks for posting this blog on newspapers. I have had much luck in locating articles in newspapers about my family. I’m interested in learning how you found the article above? Was it contained in an online archive of the newspaper? Also, I enjoy using Chronicling America – This Library of Congress site includes digitized copies of newspapers but the best feature of the site is the US Newspaper directory of papers from 1690 to present. You can search their listings by state, country, and even ethnic group. Hope this helps another researcher.

    • Our Lineage says:

      Thanks for stopping by! I found this article through another author – Jim Ridings had included it in his Cardiff 2 (Illinois) book. I then went to the microfilm at the local library. Nothing much is online for this area as yet.

      Thanks again and happy hunting!

  2. gpcox says:

    How great to have a photo of your great-grandfather! Such a treasure!
    {off topic – I’ve noticed today that if I click the Like button on the Reader it doesn’t go thru to the post. Think I’m going to have to contact Support and find out if it’s my computer or them – just wanted to warn you}

    • Our Lineage says:

      Thanks! I am blessed with quite a few photos. I was thrilled to find the newspaper article, too.

      Interesting find about the like button – I hadn’t noticed that. I guess it is happening to me, too, if you haven’t seen my likes on your posts. 🙂

  3. I couldn’t agree more as I am a newspaper junky.

  4. chmjr2 says:

    On line newspapers are I believe one of the best resources we can use in our research.

  5. NikiMarie says:

    Just curious, do you use a website for newspapers? Any that you’d recommend? I love using newspapers but they can be hard to get to since I no longer live as close to the towns I search in, so I’m looking for a good website for older newspapers that I could use. Suggestions? 🙂

    • Our Lineage says:

      Hi! Thanks for reading and asking. I do have a subscription to – I like the way you can clip articles as well as see who else might have interest in the same article. I think that the online presence for newspapers is really starting to come together.
      I recommend taking a look at fellow blogger Kenneth Marks – he has a lot of information on newspapers and free sites! I have also found good luck with local genealogy societies – sometimes they have clippings available as well as partnering with other genealogists in the area I am researching – kind of the barter system, if you will.

      Definitely check out Kenneth’s site!


    • I would also browse some of the other subscription companies. They don’t all offer the same papers. Browse their catalogues first to see whether they have newspapers from an area you are interested in. There are also many state and local sites that offer their collections for free.

      • Our Lineage says:

        Absolutely agree wtih you! They all seem to have slightly different offerings. Thanks for adding this to the comments so that NikiMarie and others can see it. 🙂

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