Texas Digital Newspaper Program Reaches Huge Milestone!
On July 7, 2023, the Texas Digital Newspaper Program reached 10 million pages of newspapers. These are newspapers digitally preserved, freely accessible, and fully text-searchable in The Portal to Texas History, hosted by University of North Texas Libraries.
Who makes the Texas Digital Newspaper Program possible?
Encompassing 912,623 newspaper issues, the TDNP collection is built by partners from across Texas. The top three most contributing partners of newspapers, in order, are:
- The Abilene Library Consortium, who have supported digitization of 44,753 newspaper issues from titles across Texas.
- The Denton Public Library, with Denton-area newspapers contributed, mostly from the Denton Record Chronicle, totaling 15,763 issues.
- The Cuero Public Library, adding The Cuero News, have contributed 14,671 issues.
The Texas Digital Newspaper Program collection represents a massive endeavor in preservation, digitization, and digital access to news content. Spanning over 200 years of history from or related to Texas and the South, TDNP includes newspapers in Spanish, German, Czech, Hebrew, Chinese, Italian, French, and Swedish, as well as one serial title in Esperanto. This past year, we have added newspaper titles from communities as small as 612 in population, as well as from big cities, including Houston, Dallas, San Antonio and Galveston, among others. Additions of newspapers in TDNP have been made possible through generous support from multiple groups, including:
- National Endowment for the Humanities
- Institute of Museum and Library Services
- Texas State Library & Archives Commission
- Tocker Foundation
- Ladd & Katherine Hancher Foundation
- Summerlee Foundation
In addition to these sponsors of digital newspaper preservation, partners from cities all over Texas have worked very hard to prepare their newspaper collections for preservation and digital access. A range of tasks go into digitizing a community newspaper, from grant-writing by partnering groups, rescuing newspapers from such places as high hurricane-risk locations, filing cabinets, hot and leaky barns, backs of trucks, or abandoned buildings, to name a few examples of how far contributors have gone to rescue newspapers. Many private individuals have helped their local public libraries prepare grant applications to fund building access to their community newspapers, saying things like, “Our community might not be here in 50 years, but I know our newspapers will be available and visible through The Portal to Texas History.” The ability of TDNP to guarantee long-term preservation and access in perpetuity is also possible because of The Cathy Nelson Hartman Portal to Texas History Endowment, which, “. . . enables UNT to extend the impact of the Portal by creating a permanent, sustainable source of income.”