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M-126: Historic Newspaper Collection

DATE: ca. 18th century - present

CREATOR: various

SCOPE: This collection is national in scope, from the eighteenth century to the present. Colonial, as well as early federal-era papers, early state imprints for neighboring Illinois (the Mercantile holds the only copies of the earliest Illinois newspapers), and several western states are represented. Missouri and especially St. Louis newspapers are strongly represented, from 1808, when The Missouri Gazette, the first paper, began printing, to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch. Particularly strong holdings include files from the Civil War era, and office, final edition files for the Post-Dispatch and the St. Louis Globe-Democrat, and for local neighborhood Journal newspapers. Special interest and minority newspapers are available and present opportunities for the study of African-American and local gay and lesbian rights issues, and women's studies.

In conjunction with Missouri Digital Heritage, the State Historical Society of Missouri, the St. Louis Public Library, the Missouri History Museum and the Missouri State Library, digital copies of the St. Louis Daily Missouri Republican, years 1861 - 1869 have been made available.

EXTENT: Approximately 150,000 single issues in 150 major titles, with numerous minor files; over 4000 linear feet.

HISTORY: From the beginnings of the Mercantile Library in the 1840s, there has been a strong institutional interest in the collection and preservation of historic newspapers, so much so that it was the first library or historical society in Missouri to create such a collection, which remains today one of the state's largest and the broadest in scope of such material.

ACCESS: Due to tremendous fragility, access to portions of this colletion are limited until all available digital and microfilm access points have been exhausted. Use may be limited and under direct supervision of staff, including, but not limited to, the turning of pages, and staff-assisted transcriptions.

Please contact the staff in advance of your visit to coordinate access to these materials for research purposes.

When available, this collection is available for on-site use only in the Rare Book and Manuscripts Reading Room. Some of the material in Special Collection M-126 may be photocopied, digitally scanned or photographed, subject to condition. For collections marked limited access, researchers are advised to contact the library at least three business days in advance of their visit to submit a request to view the physical material.

Significant portions of Special Collection M-126 are microfilmed and the Mercantile Library participates in the Missouri Newspaper Project supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and administered by the State Historical Society of Missouri. 

In conjunction with Missouri Digital Heritage, the State Historical Society of Missouri, the St. Louis Public Library, the Missouri History Museum and the Missouri State Library, digital copies of the St. Louis Daily Missouri Republican, years 1861 - 1869 have been made available.
Researchers are advised to call ahead concerning changes in hours due to University intersessions and holidays. The St. Louis Mercantile Library is located on levels one and two of the Thomas Jefferson Library building.

In observance of security procedures, certain services may not be available shortly before the daily closing time.

Preferred Citation: When citing the material from this collection, the preferred citation is: From the Special Collections of the St. Louis Mercantile Library at the University of Missouri – St. Louis.

 


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Direct questions or comments regarding this site to:
Charles Brown
Reference Services
St. Louis Subject Specialist
314.516.7243
cbrown@umsl.edu