By the end of this February, we will have ingested a total of 1,000,000 pages of Texas newspapers to The Portal to Texas History: TDNP Collection.
Because a newspaper represents its community, and an entire newspaper run is an ever-growing map of community identity, digital preservation and open access to newspapers is incredibly valuable to communities. As we prepare to celebrate our one million pages of newspapers digitized, I would like to commemorate a few titles:
- The Rusk Cherokeean: As the Texas’ oldest, continuously published weekly, the Rusk Cherokeean represents a significant collection on the Portal. The publication began in 1850, when four years after Texas achieved statehood. The Portal hosts nearly 100 years’ worth of this newspaper, from the 1920s to present-day PDF print masters, due to the foresight of its publisher, Terrie Gonzalez, about which she constantly discusses the importance of preservation and her worries about what would happen to the historic issues if a fire burned her building down. Terrie’s belief in digital preservation and access means that the newspaper will always be available to the world.
- University newspapers, including The Rice Thresher, The Texas Wesleyan Rambler, The University of Dallas News, The NT Daily/Campus Chat, and the Tarleton State J-TAC illustrate the value these universities place on their student newspapers as they seek to preserve and digitize them for open access via the Portal.
- The Rio Grande Herald: Through the perserverance and dedication of the Rio Grande City Public LIbrary director, Normal Gomez Fultz, nearly fifty years of the Rio Grande Herald have been digitized, making Rio Grande City’s history is available to the world.
- The Southwest Chinese Journal: Digitized in partnership with Rice University, this newspaper was printed in both Chinese and English, and served Houston residents until 1985, when it ceased publication.
These are only a few newspapers that represent the Texas Digital Newspaper Program. From across Texas, libraries, publishers, and active historical and genealogy societies have contributed to preserve their community records: their newspapers. As we approach one million pages, we thank these people.