The folks at Readex (a division of NewsBank – the people that bring you GenealogyBank) are making a package of (initially) nine digitized historic newspapers available. The package will be called American Newspaper Archives. It looks to me like new product is packaged specifically for the college market – to be used by students & faculty. The product seems to cover most of the U.S. regions, and will probably work pretty well if you’re doing historical research in general. There’s a genealogy application, if your ancestor happened to live in one of these cities.

It looks to me like genealogists will be sticking with GenealogyBank, NewspaperARCHIVES and SmallTownPapers for their historic newspaper subscription needs to the greatest degree. This package is certainly not aimed at the genealogy market, and unless you happen to be going to school, my guess is you may not have access to it anyway.

Following is the press release:

APRIL 1, 2009 (NAPLES, FL) – Readex, a division of NewsBank, announced today the launch of American Newspaper Archives, an expanding online collection that will offer access to major U.S. newspapers. A part of America’s Historical Newspapers, the Archives will provide users with fully searchable digital editions of historically significant and regionally diverse publications from the 19th century through the 1990s.

American Newspaper Archives will initially feature nine papers and their relevant predecessors:

  • The Times-Picayune (New Orleans, Louisiana; 1837-1988),
  • The Plain-Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio; 1845-1991),
  • The Oregonian (Portland, Oregon; 1850-1987),
  • Press-Register (Mobile, Alabama; 1821-1992),
  • The Times (Trenton, New Jersey; 1883-1993),
  • The Seattle Times (Seattle, Washington; 1896-1984),
  • The Republican (Springfield, Massachusetts; 1850-1987),
  • The Dallas Morning News (Dallas, Texas; 1885-1984) and
  • The Augusta Chronicle (Augusta, Georgia; 1792-1993).

“Readex’s continued digitization of American newspapers brings our press coverage of U.S. history, culture and daily life into our very recent past,” says David Braden, President of Readex. “By enabling college students and faculty to search more than 10 million 20th-century newspaper pages, the Archives will present opportunities for fresh insight and new findings in many areas of study.”

American Newspaper Archives will provide regional perspectives and reporting on crucial conflicts from the War of 1812 to the Gulf War; movements ranging from women’s suffrage to civil rights; scientific and medical advances; noteworthy people; natural disasters; political campaigns; and much more. Each title is available individually, and all are cross-searchable via an integrated interface that allows users to easily view, magnify, print and save digital page images.

“American Newspaper Archives offers an unparalleled record of the people, issues and events that shaped history for more than two hundred years,” says Remmel Nunn, Readex Vice President for Product Development. “Together, these newspapers will enhance the ability of researchers to track trends over time and trace the background and development of today’s important issues.”

About Readex, a division of NewsBank
For more than 50 years, the Readex name has been synonymous with research in historical materials and government documents. Recognized by librarians, students and scholars for its efforts to transform academic scholarship, Readex continues to foster a greater understanding of U.S. and world history through cohesive access to primary source materials. Today, Readex offers a wealth of Web-based collections in the humanities and social sciences, including the Archive of Americana.

From Readex.com.