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Tips for Searching Historical Newspaper Databases
Search databases with keywords that describe the topic. Connect the keywords with AND, OR or NOT. Put quotation marks around phrases. Adding an asterisk after the root of the word retrieves variations of the word, including singular and plural forms.
kill* OR assassin* OR murder*
lincoln AND assassin*
Historical newspaper databases may require proximity operators instead of quotation marks around phrases (e.g., ADJ# for adjacent and NEAR# for near within specific number of words). See the Help pages of these databases for suggestions. Click this link for tips for searching African American historical newspaper databases.
Choose words that would be used during the time period selected. Consider using variations of names (Mrs. Smith as well as Harriet Smith) and allowing for misspelled names and words. News took a longer time to travel, so select date ranges accordingly.