1 million-plus pages of microfilm in UCR’s California Digital Newspaper Collection digitized so far
By on March 17, 2014
Ancestry.com has partnered with a UCR research center to digitize millions of pages of historical California newspapers.
RIVERSIDE, Calif. — The Center for Bibliographical Studies and Research at UC Riverside has partnered with online genealogy giant Ancestry.com to digitize millions of pages of historical California newspapers, a partnership that will speed up processing of more than 100,000 reels of newspaper microfilm.
More than 1 million pages of the San Bernardino Sun and Santa Cruz Sentinel dating to the late 1880s have been scanned from the center’s California Newspaper Microfilm Archive (CNMA) and digitized since the agreement was signed in spring 2013.
Ancestry.com will host the data at newspapers.com for three years, after which the Center for Bibliographical Studies and Research will also host it at the California Digital Newspaper Collection (CDNC), which is publicly accessible at http://cdnc.ucr.edu. Access to the data will be free during the three-year embargo period to researchers at UCR and at partnering institutions that help obtain permissions from participating newspapers.
“This project will double the size of the California Digital Newspaper Collection,” said Brian Geiger, director of the Center for Bibliographical Studies and Research. “We were never going to get to 40 million pages in the next decade, so this arrangement is very beneficial.”
Newspapers.com staff will begin digitizing the Oakland Tribune this spring, Geiger added.
By this summer the CDNC will contain nearly 1 million pages of significant historical California newspapers published from 1846 to1922, including the first California newspaper, the Californian, and the first daily California newspaper, the Daily Alta California. It also contains issues of several current California newspapers that are part of a project to preserve and provide access to contemporary papers.
When the titles digitized by Ancestry.com come online in late 2016 and 2017 the collection will contain more than 2 million pages, and for the first time provide substantial coverage for the period from 1923 to the present.
Over the last 15 years UCR has assembled the largest existing archive of California newspapers on microfilm, some 100,000, 100-foot-long reels containing approximately 40 million pages of newspapers published between 1846 and the present. The acquisition of microfilm has been funded in part by the Haynes Foundation, the Ahmanson Foundation, UCR’s Tomás Rivera Library, the University of California Office of the President and the California State Library.
Founded in 1983, Ancestry.com LLC is the world’s largest online resource for family history with approximately 2.7 million subscribers across all family history sites. Newspapers.com, launched in 2012, currently hosts more than 62 million pages from 2,500 newspapers from the United States and around the world.