Lesson 1 is all about finding newspapers that you can access, browse and search, both online and offline.
Remember that all newspapers have NOT been digitized and thus are not available online - either for free or via a paid subscription. It is my guess that only somewhere between 20% and 25% of old newspapers have been digitized in the United States for example - and I suspect that the same percentages are in that range or less for most countries in the world.
So where are all these newspapers?
Let's start with the United States. The best way to find out where all the newspapers are located is to use the Library of Congress U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690-Present search feature. The search feature allows you to search by state, county, city, title, dates, keywords. language and several other options. Once you find a newspaper, you will be presented with an image that looks like this:
If it does not, then it is not available via Chronicling America. It will be available offline in archives, libraries and other institutions. And it may be available in other online databases, but this directory does not show you where, for other online collections and databases.
But to find where it is located offline, just click on the "View Complete Holdings Information" link near the bottom of the information in the left column. You will be presented with an image that looks like this:
But what about if you wish to search for free online? If the paper is available on Chronicling America, then you can search there. But despite the size of that collection, there are other collections at hundreds of other sites, far outnumbering the size of the Chronicling America collection. I would suggest reviewing the lists of links that are available from the Newspaper Research Links on this website! These lists are updated two or three times a year. At the time of this posting, there were links to over 20,000 publication titles.
Your local library might have subscriptions to other old newspaper online collections from NewsBank, Gale, ProQuest, etc. I would check with your library to see what is available. You might even be able to search these library subscription collections from home if you have a library card. This allows you another large set of free resources to search.
And there are paid subscription collections available for online searching - from Ancestry.com, Newspapers.com, GenealogyBank.com, and British Newspaper Archive, as well as NewspaperArchive.com just to name a few that focus primarily on the U.S. and U.K. There are others in other countries as well.
So, now you know where to find these newspapers. Go for it!