A hometown newspaper recently noted that the Wahpeton ND Leach Library has a collection of online newspapers. This was news to me. A good portion of my family history revolves around events in Richland County, North Dakota so this was a gold mine! Let’s look at what is available.
I’ve always delighted in the minutia that you can find in a newspaper from a smaller town. Wahpeton is the largest city in the county and the county seat is there. However, the older newspapers included all the fun things you’d find in a city much smaller: who visited who, who was in ‘town,’ who was sick (no patient privacy in those days) as well as the usual births, marriages, and deaths. And often the information included was from neighboring Minnesota and South Dakota because Wahpeton’s proximity to the state lines.
To view the newspapers, go to the Leach Library link above, choose Resources from the headings and then historical newspapers from the dropdown. Here’s a screenshot of the newspapers that are available.
You can view by title or year or just search by a name. When searching for a name, I used parenthesis to help narrow the search to an exact name. For example, “John Smith.” You may want to try searching with just a last name and narrow the years to search if you’re not finding what you are expecting. Play around with the search. I’ve found it to be remarkably good.
We are blessed again with another digital resource to help us research our family and find stories and events that helped shape their lives. Happy reading!
With a lifelong passion for genealogy and history, the author enjoys the opportunity to share genealogy tidbits, inspiring others to research and write their family story.