New York Newspapers

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United States Gotoarrow.png U.S. Newspapers Gotoarrow.png New York Gotoarrow.png Newspapers

Newspapers mention births, marriages, deaths, anniversaries, family gatherings, family travel, achievements, business notices, engagement information, probate court proceedings, and other news items. Some newspapers are indexed.


The earliest known newspaper published in New York State was the New York Gazette which commenced publishing in New York City in 1725.  It was followed in 1733 by John Peter Zenger’s New York Journal, made famous in a 1735 court decision that established freedom of the press in the province (colony) of New York. For more details.

Colonial Newspapers

In the colonial period, most of the newspapers in the New York were published in New York City.

Colonial (pre 1775) newspapers for New York, along with transcripts and web locations, are:


  • 1771-1772 Albany Gazette – no known transcripts have survived

New York City

  • Grace Kneale. “Early Death Notices from Zenger’s New York Journal, “ New York Genealogical and Biographical Record 47-49 1916-1918, [serialized] 
  • Kenneth Scott. Genealogical Data from Colonial New York Newspapers: A Consolidation of Articles from the New York, Genealogical and Biographical Record. (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 1977). [Gazette pp. 1-13 from NYG&BR 95 (October 1964): 220-232, Journal pp. 14-28 from NYG&BR 96 (January 1965): 1-15.]
  • 1743-1773 Parker’s New-York Gazette: or, The Weekly Post-Boy
  • Kenneth Scott. Genealogical Data from the New York Post-Boy 1743-1773. (Washington: National Genealogical Society, 1970).
  • Kenneth Scott, GDCNYN, pp 29-128; NYG&BR 96-99 (1965-1968), [serialized]
  • “Vital Records from Old New York Newspapers.” Journal of American Genealogy, 1 (1921): 66-70, 160-161, 255-260, 325 -330.
  • 1752-1753 The Independent Reflector
  • 1753 The Occasional Reverberator
  • 1755 The Instructor
  • 1755 John Englishman
  • 1766-1775 The New-York Journal; or, The General Advertiser
  • 1759-1767 The New-York Gazette
  • 1762 The American Chronicle
  • 1763 The New-York Pacquet
  • 1768-1775 The New-York Gazette and the Weekly Mercury
  • Kenneth Scott GDCNYN, pp. 129-243; NYG&BR vol. 99-107 (1968-1976).[serialized]
  • Kenneth Scott, Rivington’s New York Newspaper: Excerpts from a Loyalist Press, 1773-1783, (Binghamton, N.Y.: The New-York Hist. Soc., 1973).

Resources for New York Newspapers

Libraries and Archives

The New York State Library and the New York Public Library have large collections of New York newspapers. A guide, now outdated, to newspapers is A Checklist of Newspapers in Microform in the New York State Library (Albany, New York: New York State Library, 1979). Most New York newspapers have been microfilmed, and you can borrow them through interlibrary loan.

Newspapers for some cities may still be found only at the public library in that community. Many local historical and genealogical societies have copies of newspapers from their area and are indexing them. A good source is Sylvia G. Faibisoff and Wendell Tripp, compilers, A Bibliography of Newspapers in Fourteen New York Counties (Cooperstown, New York: New York Historical Association, 1978; Family History Library book 974.7 B33f). This source lists newspapers of Allegany, Broome, Cayuga, Chemung, Chenango, Cortland, Delaware, Otsego, Schuyler, Seneca, Steuben, Tioga, Tompkins, and Yates counties.

Newspaper Directory

The U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present is a national directory from the Library of Congress of over 140,000 newspaper titles. The directory provides a list of libraries from around the country that have the newspapers in their collections.

Digital Issues Online

Wikipedia has more about this subject: List of online newspaper archives

In 2007, New York Times issues from 1851-1922 and 1987 to the present were made available at no charge by the New York Times Web site. Some issues from 1923-1986 still require an access fee. ($) has a large collection, over 4 million pages of New York newspapers (mostly Syrscuse) online. This database is sometimes free at libraries under the name Access NewspaperArchive.

Hudson River Valley Heritage (HRVH) Historical Newspapers The Hudson River Valley Newspaper Projent should eventually includes major newspapers from the counties of Columbia, Dutchess, Greene, Orange, Putnam, Rockland, Sullivan, Ulster, and Westchester. Not all counties listed are currently represented.

New York's first newspaper, the New York Gazette (1726-1744), is available for free online at Old Fulton NY Post Cards. The site also includes hundreds of nineteenth- and twentieth-century New York newspapers (17,000,000+ images).

Genealogy Bank ($) offers the following colonial New York newspapers on their website:

1733-1750 New York Weekly Journal 1766-1811 New York Gazette
1744-1752 New York Evening Post 1775-1776 Constitutional Gazette
1747-1770 New York Gazette,
or Weekly Post Boy
1777 Rivington's New York Loyal Gazette
1752-1753 Independent Reflector 1777-1783 Rivington's New York Gazette
1752-1768 New York Mercury 1777-1783 Royal American Gazette
1759-1821 New York Gazette 1777-1783 Royal Gazette

In addition, Genealogy Bank contains numerous digitized nineteenth- and twentieth-century New York newspapers itemized at their site.

New York Online Historical Newspapers provides a comprehensive listing by county and publication dates.


Indexes to and transcripts of newspaper obituaries and marriages are:

  • Bowman, Fred Q. 10,000 Vital Records of Central New York, 1813–1850. Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1986. (Family History Library book 974.7 V2bf.)
  • Bowman, Fred Q. 10,000 Vital Records of Western New York, 1809–1850. Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1985. (Family History Library book 974.7 V2b.)
  • Bowman, Fred Q. 10,000 Vital Records of Eastern New York, 1777–1834. Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1987. (Family History Library book 974.7 V2bfq.) This is continued by 1,100 Vital Records of Northeastern New York, 1835–1850. The New York Genealogical and Biographical Record 118 and 119 (July 1987–July 1988).
  • Bowman, Fred Q. 8,000 More Vital Records of Eastern New York State, 1804–1850. Rhinebeck, New York: Knshp, 1991. (Family History Library book 974.7 V2bfqa.)
  • Gavit, Joseph. American Deaths and Marriages, 1784–1829. Albany, New York: New York State Library, 1977. (Family History Library films 1022833–34.) The collection has 40,000 entries alphabetical by surname of husbands and wives from sixty-five newspapers. An index to people other than the brides and grooms was compiled by Kenneth Scott as Joseph Gavit's American Deaths and Marriages, 1784–1829: Index to Non-Principals (New Orleans, Louisiana: Polyanthos, Incorporated, 1976; Family History Library book 974.7 B32s).
  • Moorhouse, B-Ann.  Notices of Irish-Born Persons in New York City Newspapers.  Article covers death, original Parish and County where deceased person was born in Ireland, relationships, and place of burial. Years covered 1819-1891.  Article in The Irish Ancestor. Vol. V> no.1. 1973, Pages 24-27. Family History Ref. 941.5 B2i V5-6.
  • Scott, Kenneth. Genealogical Data From Colonial New York Newspapers: A Consolidation From the New York Genealogical and Biographical Record. Baltimore, Maryland: Genealogical Publishing Company, 1977. (Family History Library book 974.71 D28s.) Indexes newspapers from 1726–1783.
  • Scott, Kenneth. Genealogical Data from the New York Post-Boy 1743–1773. Washington, D.C.: National Genealogical Society, 1980. (Family History Library book 974.71 B38s.)

The Family History Library has few New York newspapers other than The New York Times, 1857–1912 (Family History Library films 412 reels). Indexes to the Times include:

  • Falk, Byron A., Jr., and Valerie R. Falk. Personal Name Index to "The New York Times Index, 1851–1979." 22 Volumes. Succasunna, New Jersey: Roxbury Data Interface, 1976 and 1975–1989 1993 Supplement. 29 Volumes. Verdi, Nevada: Roxbury Data Interface, 1991. (Family History Library book 974.71 B3f.) This indexes The New York Times Index, which is not at the Family History Library but is at many public and university libraries.
  • The New York Times Obituaries Index. Two Volumes. New York, New York: The Times, 1970. (Family History Library book 974.71 V42n.) This index covers 1858–1978.

In addition to these published books, the Family History Library has clippings and other collections of genealogical extracts from newspapers for Dutchess, Madison, Rensselaer, Schenectady, and other counties.

Web Sites

Newspaper Bibliographies

  • U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present - national directory from the Library of Congress containing over 140,000 newspaper titles. The directory provides a list of libraries from around the country that have the newspapers in their collections. 
  • Clarence S. Brigham, History and Bibliography of American Newspapers, 1690-1820 (Worcester, Massachusetts: American Antiquarian Society, c1947, c1975); At various libraries;FHL Book 973 A3bc
  • Library of Congress, Catalog Publication Division, Newspapers in Microform: United States: 1948-1983, Washington, District of Columbia : Library of Congress, 1984); At various libraries; FHL Book 011.35 N479 1984 – gives location of microfilm copies for use of inter-library loan.