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African American Newspapers

Major Digitized African American Newspapers

The first known African American newspaper was Freedom’s Journal (New York, N.Y. : 1827), and since then there has been an active black press in the United States. This page is a guide to finding African American newspapers and periodicals in the Library. Click here to view a complete list of African American newspapers at the University of Illinois Library.

For the major, digitized African American newspapers of the 20th century, the best place to begin is:

Other Digital Collections

  • African American Newspapers, 1827-1998: A wide ranging collection that complements our largest collection of digitized African American newspapers, ProQuest Historical Black Newspapers. While ProQuest Historical Black Newspapers covers the major, metropolitan black newspapers of the 20th century, African American Newspapers, 1827-1998 provides access to a broader range of publications, especially the black press of America’s smaller cities, and the few extant issues of the earliest black newspapers, most of which were previously available only on microfilm or in smaller digital collections scattered around the Internet
  • African American Newspapers: The 19th Century: Nine major African American newspapers of the 19th Century, including Freedom’s Journal (the first African American newspaper ever published), the Christian Recorder, the Colored American, Douglass’ Monthly, Frederick Douglass’ Paper, the National Era, the North Star, the Provincial Freeman, and the Weekly Advocate.
  • African American Periodicals, 1825-1995: About 170 serials published by, for, or about African Americans. Part of the Archive of Americana.
  • Ethnic News Watch: 1959-present. Newspapers, magazine, and journal articles from ethnic, minority and native presses.

Reference Sources