Lesson 2 is all about searching for online newspaper articles. This lesson will discuss the basics of searching. About a dozen future lessons will focus on specific techniques to make your searching experience even better and more successful.
Almost all online historic newspaper collections have one thing in common - they have a basic search capability and an advanced search feature. I tell everyone who will listen - almost always use the advanced feature since it provides so many different ways to hone in on the articles that you seek.
Basic searches lure you into entering a surname or full name and hoping for the best, but that's OK. Let's look at a few online collections and their basic search capability:
Advanced Searches have a variety of added ways to narrow your search results. Take a look at the same sites' Advanced Search capabilities:
- Select exact newspaper
- Specify newspaper
- Date ranges
- Boolean operations (AND, OR, NOT)
- Fuzzy and phonic searching
- Related words and synonyms
The moral of this story is to use the Advanced Search feature if available. This is especially true if your target ancestor has a common name. A simple message for sure, but if heeded will provide you with more successful search results.
Good luck and Happy Hunting!