Preserving the Past, Informing the Future
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Tel: 860-757-6524, Fax: 860-757-683
Hours: 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m., Monday - Friday
Microfilming Coordinator: Jane F. Cullinane
Connecticut Newspaper Project, Connecticut State Library
231 Capitol Avenue, Hartford, CT 0610
The Connecticut Newspaper Project was part of the nationwide United States Newspaper Program and was active from Oct. 1991 to July 2002. CNP shared two goals with similar projects in all the states: first, to locate, catalog and inventory all American newspapers held in libraries, historical societies and other repositories in the state, and second, to preserve and increase access to American newspapers by microfilming as many of their state newspapers as possible. The Project was funded primarily by a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities, with financial and in-kind contributions from the State Library. The Preservation Office conducted the project.
Find Newspapers at the State Library or Other Institutions, information about Indexes to Connecticut newspapers and the History of Connecticut newspapers.
o The State Library has even more Newspapers than those filmed by CNP.
Local libraries, historical societies , publishers and commercial microfilm companies began work years ago to preserve the content of Connecticut's newspapers on microfilm. The cataloging phase of the Connecticut Newspaper Project, found 1,810 Connecticut newspapers. Of these, 1,130 were not on film and 243 had substantial gaps in the existing film.
The CNP microfilming phase ran from the Spring of 1995 until July 2002. Work began with a project to film the Deep River New Era (1874-1977). Along the way, CNP filmed newspapers with only one or two existing issues, such as Hartford's French language newspaper, Le Programme (Nov. 10 & Nov. 17, 1929) and long runs of daily newspapers, such as the Norwich bulletin (1900-1949). By the end, CNP filmed 1,094,446 pages of 437 titles.
Even with the microfilming completed by CNP, it is estimated that 1,000,000 pages of newspapers still are not preserved. The majority of what remains to be filmed is an ever-growing category: the post-1950 weekly newspapers that do not get filmed on an annual basis and are still being published. Older newspapers form another large category of newspapers that still need filming. As an example, the Norwich bulletin from 1950-1982 is still not preserved on film.
Microfilm is still considered the best way to preserve newspapers. Properly made and properly stored master microfilm has a life expectancy of 500 years. Microfilm is relatively cheap to store and relatively cheap to duplicate.
New projects are interested in enhancing access to newspapers by scanning them. The Library of Congress and the National Endowment for the Humanities have begun the National Digital Newspaper Program. The Preservation Office is looking forward to the reports on the best ways to create and present digital images of newspapers. However, the costs and methods of ensuring that digital images remain available year after year are still uncertain.
The State Library encourages local projects that microfilm newspapers by offering advice about how to start a microfilming project, providing copies of newspapers needed to fill gaps and storing the master negatives. The State of Connecticut has a Preservation Microfilming of Newspapers contract which is open to other state agencies; and qualified nonprofit organizations through a program called ePartners. This program is explained by the Connecticut Department of Administrative Services ePartners, Frequently Asked Questions.