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Wisconsin Historical Society Newspaper Collections : Finding Newspapers

Information about the newspapers at the Wisconsin Historical Society and beyond.

Library Catalog

How to Cite

For the purposes of a bibliography entry or footnote, follow this model:

Newspaper Collections Citation
Newspaper title, place of publication, issue date, page number, Wisconsin Historical Society.

The Elroy tribune, Elroy, Wisconsin, November 16, 1881, page 1, Wisconsin Historical Society.

What are you looking for?

To determine how to search our newspaper collection, answer the following questions:

  • Are you looking for an individual name, such as in an obituary?
  • Are you looking for a newspaper or story reported in a particular location?
    • If so, see the digitized newspaper map for more information on what papers are digitized and what site you can access them on.
  • Are you researching an era within the last 70 years, or is it older than 1970s?

Digitized Newspapers and Online Resources

Determining if the newspaper you're looking for is available online takes several steps.

First, for in-state publications, check out the map of Wisconsin Digital Newspapers. This map includes city, newspaper title, online date range, accessibility, and link to the correct database.

For national publications, use the U.S. Newspaper Directory from the Library of Congress. This directory of newspapers published in the United States since 1690 can help identify what titles exist for a specific place and time, and how to access them.

Locating microfilm

If your newspaper is not available online, search the title in the UW-Madison Library Catalog. The location of the newspaper and call number are listed. At the Historical Society, the call number starts wit the letter P. Use this information to locate the newspaper when you visit our reading room, or request the microfilm reel via interlibrary loan through your local public library. 


Contact Us

Call the library: 608-264-6535

Email the library:

Off-Site Access to Physical Newspapers

Want to use something in our microfilm newspaper collection, but not able to visit the library?

Inter-Library Loan
If you can't visit the Society, you can order the microfilm through interlibrary loan. Then view it at your local library.

Purchasing Copies
Photocopies of published and unpublished materials can be made by the Library/Archives staff for a fee. If the material is still under copyright, only portions may be photocopied. The staff is unable to print entire publications or collections. To purchase a copy on microfilm, please visit the Microfilm Sales Page.

Non-English Newspapers

The Wisconsin Historical Society houses an robust collection of non-English newspapers. Information on how to access them can be found in the file below.