Monday, May 29, 2017

Newspapers and Miscellaneous Research Tools

Peter White Public Library has subscriptions to a dozen daily newspapers. Paper copies are found in the Sister City/Newspaper Room on the main floor. Daily print versions of newspapers include Marquette’s Mining Journal, Chicago Tribune, Escanaba Daily Press, Green Bay Press-Gazette, (Houghton) Daily Mining Gazette, Iron Mountain-Kingsford Daily News, Ironwood Daily Globe, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, New York Times, Sault Ste. Marie Evening News, USA Today, and the Wall Street Journal. The L’Anse Sentinel and the Munising News arrive weekly. We carry the Sunday edition of the Detroit News and Free Press in a paper version. There is a second paper copy of the Mining Journal at the Reference Desk. The Reference Department keeps the Mining Journal on microfilm back to 1868 and, before that, the Lake Superior News and Miners Journal starting in 1846.

In addition to the print version, five regional newspapers are available online. Online newspapers are accessible on specially marked computers in the Reference Department on the second floor of the library. These include Marquette’s Mining Journal, Detroit Free Press (daily), Escanaba Daily Press, Houghton’s Daily Mining Gazette, Iron Mountain Daily News.

Investors will find Barron’s and Investor’s Business Daily online in the Reference Department. These online newspapers provide daily analysis of investments, market data, investing ideas, stock information, and articles on current financial news.

Consumer Reports and Consumer Reports Build & Buy Car Buying Service online databases are also available on a Reference Department computer. These provide information and comparisons on various purchases you may make such as a car, a computer, or a vacuum cleaner. 

People interested in tracing their family history have the use of several additional online resources in the Reference Department such as Ancestry, Heritage Quest, Newspaper Archive, and Sanborn Maps. Ancestry is an online genealogy search website that digs into databases and collections to find information from census reports; military, school, and church records; images and various articles relevant to your family history. Ancestry has billions of records. I know because doing family research is my husband’s favorite hobby and he has input many thousands of those records.  After buying Ancestry’s DNA test, we found distant relatives we never knew we had and are communicating with a relative who knows the family house in Kenmare, Ireland where my grandfather grew up and where a family member is still living. It’s totally exciting!

Heritage Quest also searches US Census records from 1790-1940; various city directories; 1850 and 1860 slave schedules; U.S. Indian rolls; and mortality, agricultural and industrial schedules. Newspaper Archives covers many smaller and mid-size city newspapers from 1607-2017 and can be a fruitful source of information. Sanborn Maps at PWPL include Michigan city maps ranging from 1867-1970. Marquette’s maps are from 1884-1946. These maps help chart the development and growth of towns. They were created to assist fire insurance companies in assessing the risks of insuring a particular property.

Please ask the Reference staff on the second floor of the library for help in using these many online resources. The library purchases access to these databases each year. This service allows patrons free in-library access to great information. Have fun, keep informed and search for more relatives at your library.

-Cathy Seblonka,Collection Development Librarian

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