Most people these days use at least a few types of technology, whether it be cell phone, digital cameras, HD televisions, remote controls, etc. We all do. We love our computers (most of the time). There are countless ads online telling us of all the great online this and that. Well sometimes, it really is true.
When was the last time you took a look at the online resources the Sweetwater County Library System offers? Not just a quick glance, but a good look. You might be surprised. Most people are. One of my absolute favorites if Wyoming Newspapers. I personally love this site and use it often. If you do genealogy, local history or any other type of research in Wyoming, this might just be the tool to help you along your way.
From the site:
Wyoming Newspapers is a service of the Wyoming State Library to ensure the preservation of historic Wyoming newspapers. Making Wyoming’s historic newspapers available to the world for education and historical research, including genealogy, is the cornerstone of Wyoming Newspaper. Wyoming Newspapers is a continual work-in-progress. It includes more than 340 historic newspapers with over 800,000 pages consisting mostly of Wyoming newspapers from 1849 through 1922. We have other newspapers, though not as many, ranging from 1923 through 1989. There are missing pages, issues, years, and titles that we are constantly on the lookout for. If you have any historic Wyoming newspapers, please contact us.
Historic newspapers can be a goldmine of information for those doing historical research of any kind, whether academics, students, genealogists, or for entertainment, they often contain information that is not available in any other source. Serving as the gateway to the past, historical newspapers help researchers learn about the events and perceptions that affected a community, state, and nation. In many cases, they served as the official record for a place. The small town newspapers provided a lot of personal information as well. Some of the valuable information you might find in historic newspapers can include advertisements, marriage, birth and death announcements, who attended events, land sales, businesses, church affiliations and activities, crimes, family stories, military service, obituaries that might list relatives, sporting events, taxation, fashion, agriculture advice, legends and outlaws of the West, and the list goes on.
Working as a reference librarian, I field many questions about local genealogy and history. By using the Wyoming Newspapers site, you have a better chance of finding articles about the subject you are researching.
For example: I was working on my family history. I knew my great-grandmother had lived in Rock Springs and was buried there. I wanted more information about her. I longed on to the site and by setting a few perimeters, I was able to view her obituary. The town and county where she was born was listed in Scotland. Score!! No one else living had this information. Along with this, she had belonged to the Caledonia Society and was honored by them at her service. Both facts helped me to continue with my search.
Many times, patrons will be in search of information on a specific event back in time. It is great to be able to do a search and find much of what they are looking for. One gentleman was looking for information about ads listed in the old newspapers. If you have never seen these, take a little time and check them out. The prices will floor you, but the styles and language used will amaze you. Great fun. My family has been in the area for years. While helping others with their searches, I have stumbled across several great photos and articles with my family in them. It is always a plus to my day when this happens.
Many states in the U. S. are now joining this bandwagon. By doing a simple search online you can find each state’s digitized newspaper site. They vary greatly, so take your time when researching. Watch for the “Help” button, when you are finding a bit of difficulty. Some countries also provide this service. Just remember to keep this information in your arsenal when compiling information. I for one am very grateful to all those responsible for this service.
Be sure to check our site out online, sweetwaterlibraries.com. Click on “Online Services”. There are great tools for your use. You just might be surprised what you will find. For more information, visit the website or one of our local libraries.