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Press Release - Bismarck Tribune available online at Chronicling America

Contact: Ann Jenks

Bismarck Tribune available online at Chronicling America

Bismarck – More than 60,000 Bismarck Tribune newspaper pages are now available at, the free online repository of historical American newspapers created through the National Digital Newspaper Program.

The State Historical Society of North Dakota was awarded a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to digitize 100,000 pages of newspapers from microfilm from Sept. 1, 2011 through August 31, 2013. An advisory board consisting of members from higher education, K-12 education, the newspaper profession and historians selected titles to be digitized based on editorial content, geographical distribution, and quality of microfilm.

The National Digital Newspaper Program, a partnership between NEH, the Library of Congress, and state projects, is responsible for producing Chronicling America. Chronicling America offers access to newspapers published between 1836 and 1922 in 32 states. Among recent additions to the national repository is the Bismarck Tribune from 1873-1922. The Bismarck Tribune reported on territorial and state government activities as well as local and statewide news. A special edition featured the first reporting of General Custer's defeat at the Battle of Little Bighorn in 1876. The Tribune also played a pivotal role in the relocation of the Dakota territorial capitol from Yankton to Bismarck in 1883.

Four additional North Dakota titles are being digitized and will appear on Chronicling America later this year. Those include: Jamestown Weekly Alert, 1882-1904; Ward County Independent (Minot), 1903-1921; Weekly Times-Record (Valley City), 1912-1922; and the Williston Graphic, 1895-1898, 1902-1919.

The Minnesota Historical Society partnered with the State Historical Society of North Dakota to digitize the newspaper microfilm, create metadata to assist in searching, and to oversee quality control. The State Historical Society has applied for a second round of the grant program to digitize another 100,000 newspaper pages.

Newspapers on the Chronicling America website are fully word searchable, greatly enhancing the public’s ability to access information rather than reading an un-indexed roll of microfilm one page at a time.

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