The Handwritten Newspapers Project

 and periodicals from around the world in this collection are a testament to the universal journalistic impulse–the need to share news and information with others in a public setting. That impulse refuses to be constrained by mere convention or technology.

This site provides bibliographical data, images, resource links, and research notes for hundreds of rare manuscript publications produced under extraordinary conditions in remarkable settings. Most of the works contained here are from North America, particularly Canada and the United States. Most were published during the 19th century. However, this collection includes works from around the globe–including Africa, Asia, Europe, and Australia–and they date from the ancient world (Rome’s Acta Diurna) to the present (see the Japanese handwritten newspaper published March 2011 after that nation’s devastating earthquake and tsunami, an Urdu language paper in India handwritten since 1927, and Liberia’s Daily Talk, a chalkboard “paper” posted on a blackboard on busy Tubman Boulevard in Monrovia, the capital of this impoverished African nation, since 2000; see the video below).

This project is published in “blog” form so that journalism historians, social historians, and plain ol’ history buffs may have easy access to these unique handwritten periodicals and can contribute information about them more readily.

The Old Flag (TX, 1864)

The Old Flag (TX, 1864)

The handwritten newspapers and periodicals in this collection are individually identified by title, place of origin and dates of publication, if known. Each bibliographic entry is divided into three sections containing a publication history, a general overview with the project editor’s comments based on a review of the available documentary evidence, and information on the known bibliographic resources for that particular publication and the archival location(s) of extant copies. When available, an image of an extant copy of the publication has been included.  All entries containing images are indexed. In the right column on every web page is the site index that allows users to sort the collection by date, alphabet, country, state/province, and type, as categorized by the project editor. These categories have been applied to each publication to allow the user to sort or group related publications as desired. Across the top of the website, separate groups of indexed material appear for further research. I’ve also added “recent” and “pending” pages for titles that have recently shown up on my radar and for handwritten papers which haven’t been fully vetted or simply haven’t yet been cataloged.

Kamloops Wawa (BC, 1891-1905)

Kamloops Wawa (BC, 1891-1905)

Welcome, and An Invitation

Welcome to the Handwritten Newspaper Project. I hope you will take the time to explore these amazing publications. I also invite those who are aware of handwritten papers not yet included in this collection, or who can provide new or corrected information for the bibliographical entries listed, or who simply wish to offer feedback about particular entries in this collection to share them on this site. Your comments and feedback are always welcomed. Enjoy.

Roy Alden Atwood
Project Editor    

Trinity Season
First Day of Summer, June 21, 2011
[Updated Ascension Day, May 14, 2015]
[Updated September 20, 2016]
Moscow, Idaho

If you have questions, comments, or contributions to make to the project, please email the project editor.


7 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Michael Ray Smith
    Jul 02, 2011 @ 22:41:25

    A first-class contribution.

  2. bishnunmdc
    Jan 08, 2015 @ 00:40:06

    This provides historic information.

  3. bishnunmdc
    Jan 08, 2015 @ 00:40:29

    I am also very much interested to contribute

  4. PolO (@PolOAviles)
    Sep 07, 2015 @ 22:56:50

    I was the editor of a handwriten newspaper -‘El Balsero”, in 1994-95 during the Cuban refugee crisis of 1994, in Gitmo Bay, Cuba.

  5. Steven Van Impe
    Mar 21, 2016 @ 16:08:43

    Some of the trench journals published in the Great War were handwritten, then polycopied. Many of these have recently been digitized, including some 150 titles from the Hendrik Conscience Library in Antwerp. See for example the newspaper ‘Ursel boven al’ for soldiers from the village of Ursel: https://hetarchief.be/nl/zoeken?sort=issued-asc&Serie%5B%5D=Ursel%20boven%20al

  6. Roy Atwood
    Mar 21, 2016 @ 20:03:00

    Steven, thanks for the information about these digitized copies of Great War handwritten journals and the link to the Hendrik Library archives. Much appreciated. Are you affiliated with the library?

  7. Steven Van Impe
    Mar 23, 2016 @ 08:18:30

    Hi, yes I’m the curator of old and rare books at the Hendrik Conscience Heritage Library. There’s lots of trench journals in our collection, but most are typeset. You can find all of them in the link above, but that will require a lot of browsing as the printing method is not recorded in the metadata.

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