North Carolina Archives: 169 Newspapers for Genealogy Research

One of America’s original 13 states, North Carolina’s state flag has two dates that commemorate NC’s drive for independence from Britain. On 20 May 1775 citizens of Mecklenburg County, NC, approved the Mecklenburg Declaration of Independence – supposedly the first declaration of independence made in the Thirteen Colonies. Then on 12 April 1776, North Carolina instructed its delegates to the Continental Congress to vote for independence from Britain – the first former colony to do so.

photo of the Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina

Photo: Blue Ridge Mountains, North Carolina. Credit: Ken Thomas; Wikimedia Commons.

If you are researching your ancestry from North Carolina, you will want to use GenealogyBank’s online NC newspaper archives: 169 titles to help you search your family history in “The Tar Heel State,” providing coverage from 1775 to Today. There are more than 78 million articles and records in our online North Carolina newspaper archives!

Dig deep into our online archives and search for historical and recent obituaries and other news articles about your North Carolina ancestors in these NC newspapers. Our North Carolina newspapers are divided into two collections: Historical Newspapers (complete paper) and Recent Obituaries (obituaries only).

Search North Carolina Newspaper Archives (1775 – 1993)

Search North Carolina Recent Obituaries (1988 – Current)

illustration of the state flag of North Carolina

Illustration: state flag of North Carolina. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Here is a list of online North Carolina newspapers in the historical archives. Each newspaper title in this list is an active link that will take you directly to that paper’s search page, where you can begin searching for your ancestors by surnames, dates, keywords and more. The NC newspaper titles are listed alphabetically by city.

City Title Date Range* Collection
Ahoskie Roanoke-Chowan News Herald 07/10/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Albemarle Stanly News and Press 01/02/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Andrews Andrews Journal 12/04/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Apex Apex Herald 01/04/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Apex, Holly Springs Southwest Wake News 06/01/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Asheboro Randolph Guide 04/06/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Asheboro Courier-Tribune 04/06/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Belhaven Beaufort-Hyde News 07/27/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Blowing Rock Blowing Rocket 05/06/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Boone Mountain Times 02/04/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Boone Watauga Democrat 01/14/2005 – Current Recent Obituaries
Bryson City Smoky Mountain Times 02/06/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Burgaw Pender Chronicle 10/28/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Burgaw Pender-Topsail Post & Voice 11/10/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Cary Cary News 02/13/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Cashiers Crossroads Chronicle 03/18/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Chapel Hill Chapel Hill News 05/03/2000 – Current Recent Obituaries
Chapel Hill Chapel Hill Herald 01/27/1995 – Current Recent Obituaries
Charlotte Charlotte Semi-Weekly Observer 12/15/1916 – 12/15/1916 Newspaper Archives
Charlotte Africo-American Presbyterian 12/21/1899 – 12/21/1899 Newspaper Archives
Charlotte Charlotte Observer 01/01/1992 – Current Recent Obituaries
Charlotte Charlotte Observer 03/13/1892 – 12/31/1935 Newspaper Archives
Charlotte Charlotte News 12/11/1888 – 09/29/1922 Newspaper Archives
Charlotte Carolina Israelite 02/01/1944 – 12/01/1958 Newspaper Archives
Charlotte Charlotte Post 02/03/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Charlotte Charlotte Observer, The: Blogs 11/09/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Clayton Clayton News-Star 08/10/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Clemmons Clemmons Courier 01/06/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Cleveland Cleveland Post 01/18/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Clinton Sampson Independent 07/07/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Davidson 01/01/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Durham Herald-Sun 01/01/1995 – Current Recent Obituaries
Durham Chronicle, The: Duke University 01/25/1994 – Current Recent Obituaries
Durham Durham News 09/03/2005 – Current Recent Obituaries
Edenton Chowan Herald 07/12/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Edenton Edenton Gazette 02/26/1806 – 02/26/1821 Newspaper Archives
Edenton State Gazette of North Carolina 05/11/1793 – 02/20/1799 Newspaper Archives
Elizabeth City Daily Advance 11/09/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Elizabethtown Bladen Journal 03/05/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Elkin Tribune 09/19/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Farmville Farmville Enterprise 07/13/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Fayetteville Fayetteville Observer 01/18/1988 – Current Recent Obituaries
Fayetteville Carolina Observer 12/09/1824 – 02/23/1863 Newspaper Archives
Fayetteville North Carolina Chronicle or Fayetteville Gazette 02/01/1790 – 07/19/1790 Newspaper Archives
Fayetteville American 04/26/1816 – 04/26/1816 Newspaper Archives
Forest City Daily Courier 01/01/2005 – Current Recent Obituaries
Franklin Franklin Press 02/19/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Fremont Wayne-Wilson News Leader 07/06/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Fuquay-Varina Fuquay-Varina Independent 10/14/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Garner Garner News 10/21/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Garner, Cleveland Garner-Cleveland Record 01/05/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Greensboro News & Record: Blogs 01/24/2005 – Current Recent Obituaries
Greensboro News & Record 01/01/1990 – Current Recent Obituaries
Greensboro Greensboro Record 03/17/1906 – 03/16/1984 Newspaper Archives
Greensboro Greensboro News and Record 03/19/1984 – 11/10/1989 Newspaper Archives
Greensboro Greensboro Daily News 01/03/1906 – 12/31/1982 Newspaper Archives
Greensboro Yes! Weekly 03/16/2005 – Current Recent Obituaries
Greenville Daily Reflector 08/30/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Grifton Times-Leader 07/20/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Halifax North-Carolina Journal 08/01/1792 – 09/11/1797 Newspaper Archives
Hampstead Topsail Voice 09/10/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Hayesville Clay County Progress 09/19/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Henderson Daily Dispatch 04/10/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Hertford Perquimans Weekly 07/13/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Hickory Hickory Daily Record 02/10/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
High Point High Point Enterprise 04/14/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Highlands Highlander 02/28/2013 – Current Recent Obituaries
Hillsborough Hillsborough Recorder 03/10/1824 – 05/10/1865 Newspaper Archives
Hillsborough News of Orange County 08/27/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Holly Springs Holly Springs Sun 07/10/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Jamestown Jamestown News 01/12/2005 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kannapolis Independent Tribune 05/27/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kannapolis Kannapolis Citizen 04/01/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kenansville Duplin Times 09/29/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kenansville Duplin Today – Pink Hill Review 03/08/2012 – Current Recent Obituaries
Laurinburg Laurinburg Exchange 01/02/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lenoir News-Topic 11/12/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lincolnton Lincoln Republican 01/23/1840 – 05/25/1842 Newspaper Archives
Lincolnton Lincoln Courier 05/02/1846 – 02/15/1851 Newspaper Archives
Littleton Lake Gaston Gazette-Observer 07/08/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Littleton True Reformer 07/25/1900 – 07/25/1900 Newspaper Archives
Louisburg Franklin Times 12/19/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lumberton Robesonian 01/01/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Marion McDowell News 02/12/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Mebane Mebane Enterprise 09/17/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Milton Milton Gazette and Roanoke Advertiser 05/03/1822 – 04/21/1825 Newspaper Archives
Monroe Enquirer-Journal 10/01/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Mooresville Mooresville Tribune 02/16/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Morehead City Carteret County News-Times 04/16/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Morganton News Herald 01/12/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Mount Olive Mount Olive Tribune 10/06/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Mt. Airy Mt. Airy News 11/02/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Murfreesboro Hornets’ Nest 10/01/1812 – 07/22/1813 Newspaper Archives
Murphy Cherokee Scout 04/20/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Nashville Nashville Graphic 01/06/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
New Bern True Republican, and Newbern Weekly Advertiser 04/02/1810 – 08/07/1811 Newspaper Archives
New Bern Newbern Sentinel 03/21/1818 – 12/21/1836 Newspaper Archives
New Bern North-Carolina Gazette 03/24/1775 – 07/14/1775 Newspaper Archives
New Bern Newbern Herald 01/20/1809 – 02/26/1810 Newspaper Archives
New Bern Morning Herald 09/17/1807 – 12/30/1808 Newspaper Archives
New Bern Carolina Federal Republican 01/12/1809 – 04/25/1818 Newspaper Archives
New Bern State Gazette of North Carolina 08/09/1787 – 02/07/1788 Newspaper Archives
Newton Observer News Enterprise 09/06/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Pilot Mountain Pilot 02/20/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Princeton Princeton News-Leader 05/30/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Raleigh Star 11/03/1808 – 09/29/1852 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh Midtown Raleigh News 01/16/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Raleigh Raleigh Register 06/04/1819 – 12/28/1821 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh Raleigh Extra 06/18/1995 – Current Recent Obituaries
Raleigh North Raleigh News 07/21/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Raleigh Gazette 12/16/1893 – 02/19/1898 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh Observer 02/24/1877 – 09/11/1880 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh Semi-Weekly Standard 01/14/1852 – 03/08/1868 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh Dispatch 12/21/1991 – 04/10/1993 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh News & Observer, The: Web Edition Articles 05/06/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Raleigh News & Observer, The: Blogs 12/07/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Raleigh North-Carolina Minerva 11/26/1799 – 12/31/1804 Newspaper Archives
Raleigh News & Observer 01/01/1991 – Current Recent Obituaries
Red Springs Red Springs Citizen 09/10/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Reidsville Eden Daily News 02/13/2013 – Current Recent Obituaries
Reidsville Reidsville Review 03/25/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Richlands Richlands-Beulaville Advertiser News 10/28/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Roanoke Rapids Daily Herald 08/15/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Robbinsville Graham Star 01/28/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Rockingham Richmond County Daily Journal 05/05/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Rocky Mount Rocky Mount Telegram 09/03/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Roxboro Courier-Times 11/22/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Salisbury Salisbury Post 12/01/1998 – Current Recent Obituaries
Sanford Sanford Herald 02/17/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Shallotte Brunswick Beacon 05/18/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Smithfield Smithfield Herald 01/19/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Snow Hill Standard Laconic 07/13/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Southern Pines Pilot 10/08/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Spring Hope Spring Hope Enterprise & The Bailey News 08/03/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Spruce Pine Mitchell News-Journal 06/12/2013 – Current Recent Obituaries
St. Pauls St. Pauls Review 09/04/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Statesville Statesville Record & Landmark 02/06/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Swansboro Tideland News 09/03/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Sylva Sylva Herald & Ruralite 10/21/1999 – Current Recent Obituaries
Tabor City Tabor-Loris Tribune 03/14/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Tarboro Daily Southerner 01/23/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Tarboro Tarboro Press 01/04/1840 – 03/02/1844 Newspaper Archives
Thomasville Thomasville Times 01/01/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Troy Montgomery Herald 06/20/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Tryon Tryon Daily Bulletin 05/14/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Wadesboro Anson Record 06/19/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Wallace Wallace Enterprise 01/06/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Walnut Cove Stokes News 12/20/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Warrenton Warren Record 07/08/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Warsaw Warsaw-Faison News 01/06/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Washington Washington Daily News 10/02/2014 – Current Recent Obituaries
Washington American Recorder 04/28/1815 – 05/27/1825 Newspaper Archives
Weaverville Weaverville Tribune 04/30/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
West Jefferson Jefferson Post 09/25/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Whiteville News Reporter 04/22/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Williamston Martin County Enterprise and Weekly Herald 07/14/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Wilmington StarNews 01/31/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Wilmington Wilmington Gazette 01/01/1801 – 01/13/1816 Newspaper Archives
Wilmington Wilmington Centinel and General Advertiser 06/18/1788 – 06/18/1788 Newspaper Archives
Wilmington True Republican or American Whig 01/03/1809 – 11/07/1809 Newspaper Archives
Wilmington Cape-Fear Recorder 11/28/1818 – 04/11/1827 Newspaper Archives
Wilson Wilson Daily Times 10/10/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Windsor Bertie Ledger-Advance 07/13/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Winston-Salem Winston-Salem Journal 11/14/1997 – Current Recent Obituaries
Winston-Salem Twin City Sentinel 12/27/1906 – 12/27/1906 Newspaper Archives
Winston-Salem Winston-Salem Journal 08/30/1898 – 12/31/1929 Newspaper Archives
Yadkinville Yadkin Ripple 09/19/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Yanceyville Caswell Messenger 08/27/2003 – Current Recent Obituaries
Zebulon Eastern Wake News 11/12/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries

*Date Ranges may have selected coverage unavailable.

You can either print or create a PDF version of this Blog post by simply clicking on the green “Print/PDF” button below. The PDF version makes it easy to save this post onto your desktop or portable device for quick reference – all the North Carolina newspaper links will be live.

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Elijah Sold Shoes Straight from His Saddlebags

No shoe stores in Boston in the late 1700s? According to Elijah Leathe’s obituary, “he was about the first who carried shoes, in saddle bags, to market to Boston, there being then no shoe stores.”

obituary for Elijah Leathe, Boston Traveler newspaper article 22 December 1835

Boston Traveler (Boston, Massachusetts), 22 December 1835, page 3

This old 1800s newspaper article added that “He peddled them out from a bench, north side Faneuil Hall.”

illustration of Boston's Faneuil Hall as it appeared in 1776

Illustration: Faneuil Hall as it appeared in 1776. Source: Wikipedia.

Can it be true that there were no shoe stores in the late 1700s in Boston? Anyone know for sure if this is a fact?

Note: FamilySearch International ( and GenealogyBank are partnering to make over a billion records from recent and historical obituaries searchable online. The tremendous undertaking will make a billion records from over 100 million U.S. newspaper obituaries readily searchable online. The newspapers are from all 50 states and cover the period 1730 to the present.  Find out more at:

Related Articles:

Civil War Newspaper Research: Personal Notices & Letters

Introduction: Mary Harrell-Sesniak is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. In this blog article, Mary shows that one of the ways ordinary citizens and families communicated across enemy lines during the Civil War was by having personal notices and even letters published in newspapers – and these are a great resource for family historians.

It’s often said that “Where there is a will, there is usually a way.” This is true even during the most challenging times – such as during the American Civil War, when in the midst of terrible fighting, communications still found their way across enemy lines. Families either smuggled letters, sent them via flags of truce, or – what is not often realized – published them in local newspapers.

illustration: the 1863 Civil War Battle of Chickamauga, by Kurz & Allison, c. 1890

Illustration: the 1863 Civil War Battle of Chickamauga, by Kurz & Allison, c. 1890. Credit: Library of Congress.

Thanks to digitized newspaper collections online, such as GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives, genealogists can search these old newspapers to find very personal communications from and about their ancestors.

Restricted Messages

Some newspapers during the Civil War, such as the Daily National Republican of Washington, D.C., limited the types of notices its readers could publish. In this old news article example, readers could only submit information regarding health or whereabouts to friends and relatives.

  • E. Cunningham and family of New York City relayed a message to Mr. and Mrs. Bernard F. McKenna. They were well and wished to hear the same from them.
  • Charles Horsfield of Wilmington, North Carolina, learned that his mother had died on the 15th of July, an important genealogical date if an obituary was not published.
  • Letitia Donahue of New York City was desperate to hear news of her husband Sam. He was formerly of Atlanta, Georgia – but if you notice the reference to Augusta, this is an important clue as to his possible whereabouts.
personal ads, Daily National Republican newspaper advertisements 28 August 1863

Daily National Republican (Washington, D.C.), 28 August 1863, page 2

“Please Copy” or Answer Instructions

Whenever you spot a “please copy” notice, there is a connection to the location. It may be a residence, place where someone works, or – in the case of a soldier – a place where they were stationed.

Many of these newspaper notices also gave instructions as to how one could answer. This clue indicates that they had access to a particular newspaper, even if they lived elsewhere.

Reprisals and Hidden Identities

One of the more proactive newspapers during the Civil War was the Richmond Enquirer in Virginia, which exchanged personals with various northern papers.

Divided families often printed notices – but if they feared reprisals, either for themselves or for loved ones, they would disguise identities by using nicknames or initials. In this example, E. S. C. requested to hear from Mrs. M. J. Ebbs. They were well and sent their love to Alice.

personal ad to M. J. Ebbs, Richmond Enquirer newspaper advertisement 16 April 1864

Richmond Enquirer (Richmond, Virginia), 16 April 1864, page 1

Search tips to locate hidden identities:

  • Search without a surname
  • Search by initials with or without a surname
  • Search by nicknames and locations

Civil War Soldier News

Not surprisingly, many newspaper notices were about missing Civil War soldiers.

In the same issue of the Richmond Enquirer, there was a message to Lieut. J. M. Podgett of the 18th Georgia reporting that Britton W. Riggons was well and comfortable at Camp Douglas in Illinois.

Another notice, to Charles B. Linn, notes that messages were getting through and that “things” were sent back. He was welcome to respond to “W. S. R.” via the Richmond Enquirer or the New York News.

personal ad to Charles Linn, Richmond Enquirer newspaper advertisement 16 April 1864

Richmond Enquirer (Richmond, Virginia), 16 April 1864, page 1

Letters to Congressmen

Many letters published in newspapers during the Civil War are full of pathos and desperation, such as the following example.

personal ad to Joseph Segar, Richmond Enquirer newspaper advertisement 27 October 1864

Richmond Enquirer (Richmond, Virginia), 27 October 1864, page 1

After learning that Dr. Frederick Griffith had been captured about the 20th of September, Wat H. Tyler, M.D., wrote his Congressman Joseph Segar.

What is exciting about this discovery is that the capture is reported in official records, but not how assistance was requested. Griffith was exchanged on 19 March 1865, most likely a direct result of Tyler’s letter. Be sure to visit their Findagrave memorials:

Civil War Vital Records

When you cannot locate a vital record from the Civil War era, a genealogist might find direct or indirect evidence of that record in newspaper notices. In this example, the widow was visiting the Angier House and her husband’s loss was noted.

personal notice about Mrs. Woodbury, Plain Dealer newspaper article 12 July 1862

Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio), 12 July 1862, page 4

This sad notice is important because it connects three generations, and substitutes for an obituary.

In this next example, M. Jane Richardson wrote her father to report that her husband had died on 1 October 1864 of diphtheria, and that Little Nora had no hope of recovering either. She was in deep distress and asked her father to come see her.

personal ad to Mr. Burton, Richmond Enquirer newspaper advertisement 27 October 1864

Richmond Enquirer (Richmond, Virginia), 27 October 1864, page 1

Civil War Marriage Records

What is wonderful for genealogists searching these Civil War-era newspapers is that not all notices were sad.

Many marriage notices were published at that time. In this one, G. L. M. married Miss A. L. on Wednesday, March 30, 1864, possibly in New York.

Genealogical Challenge: Try to figure out whom this marriage notice was about and let us know in the comments!

marriage announcement, Richmond Enquirer newspaper article 16 April 1864

Richmond Enquirer (Richmond, Virginia), 16 April 1864, page 1

Civil War research is a fascinating topic – and it doesn’t have to be limited to official records.

You can date early photographs using revenue stamps, learn about regiments through their uniforms, and explore the fascinating articles and letters found in historical newspapers.

Related Civil War Articles & Resources:

The Three Stooges’ Story Told in Their Obituaries

Introduction: Duncan Kuehn is a professional genealogist with over nine years of client experience. She has worked on several well-known projects, such as “Who Do You Think You Are?” In this blog post, Duncan searches GenealogyBank’s obituaries collection to learn more about the zany comedy act “The Three Stooges.”

The Three Stooges, active from 1925 to 1970, were one of the most endearing and entertaining comedy acts that many of us grew up watching. The characters of Moe, Larry, and Curly made us laugh. They were prolific producers of short comedy films – at their peak, they produced eight shorts every year! I recently spent some time learning more about these beloved comedians by finding their obituaries in GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives.

The dynamic trio originally got their start as stooges (Moe Howard, Shemp Howard, and Larry Fine) for Ted Healy. Shemp and Ted didn’t work well together and Shemp moved on to other projects. Jerome a.k.a. “Curly,” Moe and Shemp’s younger brother, then took Shemp’s place and the trio eventually left Healy to form their own comedy act, “The Three Stooges.” Curly remained one of the Stooges until his debilitating stroke in 1946. He was known for his high-pitched voice and childlike antics. He died in a care center on 18 January 1952.

obituary for Jerome "Curly" Howard, Oregonian newspaper article 20 January 1952

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 20 January 1952, page 11

Shemp returned to the act after Jerome’s stroke to fill in for his brother. What was supposed to be a temporary gig lasted for several years. Shemp filled in until his death of heart failure on 22 November 1955. Other stooges filled in for Shemp in the following years.

obituary for Sam (Shemp) Howard, Sacramento Bee newspaper article 23 November 1955

Sacramento Bee (Sacramento, California), 23 November 1955, page 1

Larry provided the voice of reason for the group, although his character wasn’t very reasonable. He died on 24 January 1975 of a stroke.

obituary for Larry Fine, San Diego Union newspaper article 25 January 1975

San Diego Union (San Diego, California), 25 January 1975, page 15

While most of the Stooges struggled with finances, Moe was a wise businessman and invested his earnings. His onscreen character was a bully, but that didn’t reflect his true personality. He was 77 when he died of lung cancer on 4 May 1975.

obituary for Moe Howard, San Diego Union newspaper article 6 May 1975

San Diego Union (San Diego, California), 6 May 1975, page 10

As people have indexed some of the Stooges’ obituaries as part of the GenealogyBank and FamilySearch agreement, memories of happy childhood experiences have flooded back. While The Three Stooges have all died, they continue to bring joy to others through the lasting legacy of their comedy.

Note: FamilySearch International ( and GenealogyBank are partnering to make over a billion records from recent and historical obituaries searchable online. The tremendous undertaking will make a billion records from over 100 million U.S. newspaper obituaries readily searchable online. The newspapers are from all 50 states and cover the period 1730 to the present.  Find out more at:

Related Articles:

Resources to Trace African American Slave Ancestry

FamilySearch recently announced it is working with the Smithsonian National Museum of African American History and Culture, the Afro-American Historical & Genealogical Society and the California African American Museum to crowdsource the online indexing of 1.5 million Freedman’s Bureau records that FamilySearch has put online.

This is a great resource to start learning about African American slaves in early American history. Is it possible to find out more about these slaves – the actual stories of their individual lives? Can we know what happened to each one?

photo of a slave cabin

Photo: slave cabin. Source: Library of Congress.

In some cases, yes – we can.

There are two key sources for these African American slave stories.

Slave Stories in Newspapers

Some of these black slave stories can be found in old newspapers. GenealogyBank’s 1.8 billion news stories are available – with unlimited downloads – at a nominal monthly or annual fee, making them easily available to genealogists everywhere.

a montage of newspaper articles about former slaves

As the nation grew so did newspapers – and newspapers recorded and preserved our ancestors’ stories.

Enter Last Name

For example, in newspapers we can learn the story of 79-year-old “Uncle Reuben” Taylor who grew up a slave on a farm near Baltimore, Maryland, was freed in 1863, and launched his career over the next 57 years delivering coal in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. The Patriot (Harrisburg, Pennsylvania) 31 December 1920, page 7 tells us that he then retired to live with his daughter in Chicago.

Dig in and find your ancestors’ stories in GenealogyBank’s newspaper vault 1690 to Today.

a montage of newspaper articles from African American newspapers

Note that GenealogyBank also has a special search for our expansive online collection of more than 260 African American newspapers, which contains some of the earliest black publications such as Frederick Douglass’ Paper, an early anti-slavery newspaper by abolitionist Frederick Douglass. Access our African American newspaper archive here:

Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936-1938

The Library of Congress has digitized and put online the collection of all 2,300+ first-person interviews with former slaves that were conducted by the Federal Writers’ Project from 1936-1938.

a photo of three ex-slaves interviewed for the by the Federal Writers’ Project from 1936-1938

Source: Library of Congress

These one-on-one slave interviews are invaluable.

The typescripts retain the tone of the person being interviewed. Reading the pages, you quickly can “hear” them speaking to you today.

Robert Bryant lived in Herculaneum, Mississippi – here is his story.
Find his story – and the story of thousands of others in this online collection.

ex-slave Robert Bryant's story as told to the Federal Writers’ Project

Source: Library of Congress

Real people. Real stories. Real lives.
These stories give you the opportunity to glimpse the life of a slave – as told one story at a time.

Get to know them – read and experience their stories.

Related African American Slavery Articles:

Hawaii Archives: 25 Newspapers for Genealogy Research

Hawaii, the most recent addition to the United States, became the nation’s 50th state when it joined the Union on 21 August 1959. The only U.S. state not located in the Americas, the state of Hawaii is a string of islands located in the central Pacific Ocean. Hawaii is the country’s 8th smallest state and the 11th least populous.

photo of Punaluu Beach Park, Big Island, Hawaii

Photo: Punaluu Beach Park, Big Island, Hawaii. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

If you are researching your ancestry from Hawaii, you will want to use GenealogyBank’s online HI newspaper archives: 25 titles to help you search your family history in “The Aloha State,” providing coverage from 1836 to Today. There are more than 166,000 articles and records in our online Hawaii newspaper archives! These historical HI newspapers are fantastic resources to trace back Native Hawaiian and Polynesian ancestry.

Dig deep into our online archives and search for historical and recent obituaries and other news articles about your Hawaiian ancestors in these HI newspapers. Our Hawaii newspapers are divided into two collections: Historical Newspapers (complete paper) and Recent Obituaries (obituaries only).

Search Hawaii Newspaper Archives (1836 – 1991)

Search Hawaii Recent Obituaries (1999 – Current)

Illustration: state flag of Hawaii

Illustration: state flag of Hawaii. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Here is a list of online Hawaii newspapers in the historical archives. Each newspaper title in this list is an active link that will take you directly to that paper’s search page, where you can begin searching for your ancestors by surnames, dates, keywords and more. The HI newspaper titles are listed alphabetically by city.

City Title Date Range* Collection
Hilo Big Island Weekly 04/18/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Hilo Hawaii Tribune-Herald 07/28/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Hawaii Independent 06/21/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Polynesian 06/06/1840 – 09/11/1858 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Afro-Hawai’i News 01/31/1989 – 12/31/1991 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Hawaii Reporter 10/21/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Pacific Commercial Advertiser 07/02/1856 – 05/13/1876 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Temperance Advocate 01/01/1843 – 12/02/1843 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Hawaiian Gazette 11/04/1865 – 03/28/1893 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Honolulu Star-Bulletin 01/01/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Sandwich Islands News 09/02/1846 – 12/23/1846 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Friend 01/01/1844 – 12/01/1880 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Sandwich Island Gazette and Journal of Commerce 08/06/1836 – 07/27/1839 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Honolulu Star-Advertiser 06/07/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Folio 11/16/1855 – 11/16/1855 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Punch Bowl 07/01/1869 – 09/01/1869 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Honolulu Advertiser 01/01/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kailua-Kona West Hawaii Today 09/27/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kamuela North Hawaii News 03/29/2012 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kaunakakai Molokai Dispatch 07/28/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Laie Ke Alaka’i 09/12/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lihue MidWeek Kaua’i Weekly 06/16/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lihue Garden Island 11/10/1999 – Current Recent Obituaries
Pearl City Afro-Hawai’i News 06/01/1987 – 10/31/1988 Newspaper Archives
Waialua Afro-Hawai’i News 04/30/1990 – 05/31/1990 Newspaper Archives

*Date Ranges may have selected coverage unavailable.

You can either print or create a PDF version of this Blog post by simply clicking on the green “Print/PDF” button below. The PDF version makes it easy to save this post onto your desktop or portable device for quick reference – all the Hawaii newspaper links will be live.

Related Resource:

Google Remembers Olympian & Surfer Duke Kahanamoku

This week’s Google Doodle honors famed five-time Olympic medalist, Hawaiian athlete and swimmer, Duke Kahanamoku (1890-1968), who was born 24 August 1890 in Hawaii. He was known as the “Father of Surfing.”

a Google Doodle of Hawaiian surfer Duke Kahanamoku

Source: Google

Here is a 1965 interview with him by Bruce Brown at the start of the first annual Duke Kahanamoku invitational surfing competition. Source:

There are hundreds of old news articles in GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives that detailed his remarkable surfing career – which lasted more than 50 years.

article about Hawaiian surfer Duke Kahanamoku, Oregonian newspaper article 24 September 1917

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 24 September 1917, page 10

Discover more about Kahanamoku’s life and amazing success in professional surfing in the historical archives now:

GenealogyBank is your source for more than 300 years of America’s history.

Vintage Fashion: Our Ancestors’ Summer Apparel

Introduction: Gena Philibert-Ortega is a genealogist and author of the book “From the Family Kitchen.” In this blog article, Gena searches old newspapers to find articles and advertisements that show what our ancestors wore during the hot summer months.

I don’t know about where you live, but here in California it is HOT. This week has been hot and humid, something we are not as used to since we normally live with a “dry heat.” So as the temperature goes up people try all sorts of ways to keep cool, including altering the way they normally dress. A few days ago I was standing in line at the bank and a woman in her bathing suit was in front of me! Because it is warm all year long here, I would say the concept of “summer fashion” is lost on most of us Californians.

Typically in most places, however, each season brings with it new fashions. It wasn’t too terribly long ago that our ancestors learned about the newest fashion trends via the newspaper. And while swimsuits are a summer fashion must-have (see Great-Grandmother’s Swimsuit in Vintage Fashion Articles & Photos), other summer fashions are important for outdoor activities, social events, and vacationing.

bathing suit ad, Charlotte Observer newspaper advertisement 11 July 1916

Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, North Carolina), 11 July 1916, page 7

Summer Fashions of Yesteryear

I am grateful fashion trends have changed over the generations because some of the older apparel trends included way too much fabric to wear during hot summer months. Take this 1906 example from Louisiana. The Gibson girl look is well represented in these summer dresses, which are described as being “light” and made from “filmy fabrics.” And while I have no doubt that these linen dresses were much lighter than women’s standard fare at that time, I am grateful I didn’t have to wear that much fabric in a time when air conditioning wasn’t available.

summer fashions ad, Times-Picayune newspaper advertisement 11 February 1906

Times-Picayune (New Orleans, Louisiana), 11 February 1906, page 5

I have to admit I love looking at vintage fashions from the 1920s, and newspaper advertisements provide us with a sense of what clothing was really available to our ancestors for purchase. Sure, it’s interesting to see what models were wearing at fashion shows, but newspaper advertisements verify what styles of apparel were available for the common family.

Take for instance this short-sleeved frock. The reader is informed that “The whole background of summer fashions is white” and the use of “dainty pleatings and exquisite lace trimmings” can be seen in the fashions of 1924.

ad for summer clothes, Plain Dealer newspaper advertisement 25 May 1924

Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio), 25 May 1924, page 49

Similarly-styled dresses can be seen in an advertisement on the same page of the Plain Dealer, that proclaims:

When summer comes – it must not find us unprepared. Filmy Frocks of printed or plain georgette, crepe or chiffon, embellished with lace, embroidery or beads, in themselves suggest vine shaded verandas and light laughter, or the joys of the summer evening dance.

ad for summer clothes, Plain Dealer newspaper advertisement 25 May 1924

Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio), 25 May 1924, page 49

Looking toward Hollywood

Celebrity has always attracted attention – and there is no doubt that, just like today, people have always been interested in what was being worn by the rich and famous. I love the description of the outfits in this 1939 article entitled “Ladies of the Screen Vie with Each Other in Wearing Latest in Summer Fashions.”

Ladies of the Screen Vie with Each Other in Wearing Latest in Summer Fashions, Dallas Morning News newspaper article 5 June 1939

Dallas Morning News (Dallas, Texas), 5 June 1939, page 4

One of the stars mentioned in the piece is Margaret Sullavan who starred opposite Jimmy Stewart in the movie Shop Around the Corner, the inspiration for the Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan film You’ve Got Mail. Sullavan’s outfit is described as:

…new hostess pajamas, the latest in lounging comfort, combine pigskin with a heavy roma crepe. The blond star chooses a watermelon pink shade for the very full trousers, with shirred bodice draped from the plain round neckline. A wide, natural-colored pigskin girdle, studded in silver nailheads, individualizes the suit, and, with it, Miss Sullavan wears a heavy cord snood to keep her curls in line.

Most likely the use of the word pigskin here indicates a type of leather.

A more summer-sounding outfit in the article is described as worn by Lupe Velez who:

…relaxing recently at Palm Springs, wore transparent oilskin fuchsia-colored slacks and bolero over a fuchsia and white striped oil-silk puckerette bathing suit.

(Oil-silk, incidentally, is a material much like that used for men’s tobacco pouches.)


What did those summer fashions cost our ancestors? I mentioned above how advertisements can provide us images of fashions that were available to our families, but they can also answer questions about the price of the apparel. This large 1933 newspaper advertisement includes sale prices for everything from wool bathing suits to summer coats and dresses.


ad for summer clothes, Daily Illinois State Journal newspaper article 20 July 1933

Daily Illinois State Journal (Springfield, Illinois), 20 July 1933, page 11

What shoes would they have worn with that summer wardrobe? Today we mostly think of sandals and flip-flops as summer ware, but fashionistas know you need much more. This ad offers shoes for $1.95 a pair:

Every style in this sale was selected for fashion-rightness. Shoes for all summer occasions – in models for street, sports, daytime and summer resort wear.

Notice that they proclaim to have plenty of white shoes in stock, since white was traditionally worn during the summer months or specifically after Memorial Day and before Labor Day; a fashion “rule” most likely established by high society women to distinguish themselves from everyone else.

ad for summer shoes, Evening Star newspaper advertisement 13 May 1934

Evening Star (Washington, D.C.), 13 May 1934, page 26

When you find an old newspaper fashion advertisement, take the time to research what the price would translate to in today’s world. Various websites including Measuring Worth can assist you in converting those prices into modern-day sums.

What did your ancestors wear during the summer? While our ideas about what constitutes summer wear have changed over the generations, it’s a good bet that your ancestors chose outfits that would have helped them beat the heat. What did your ancestors wear? Their hometown newspapers provide clues.

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August Update: 4 Million Genealogy Records Just Added!

Every day, GenealogyBank is working hard to digitize more newspapers and obituaries, expanding our burgeoning collection to give you the largest newspaper archives for family history research available online. We just completed adding 4 million more U.S. genealogy records, vastly increasing our content coverage from coast to coast!

screenshot of GenealogyBank's homepage showing the Monthly Update for the month of August

Here are some of the details about our most recent U.S. newspaper additions:

  • A total of 30 newspaper titles from 19 U.S. states plus the District of Columbia
  • 10 of these titles are newspapers added to GenealogyBank for the first time
  • Newspaper titles marked with an asterisk (*) are new to our online archives
  • We’ve shown the newspaper issue date ranges so that you can determine if the newly added content is relevant to your personal genealogy research

To see our newspaper archives’ complete title lists, click here.

State City Title Date Range Collection
California Idyllwild Idyllwild Town Crier 11/1/1946–12/20/1947 Newspaper Archives
California Redding Free Press 1/2/1892–12/31/1892 Newspaper Archives
California Riverside Riverside Daily Press 4/1/1941–6/30/1941 Newspaper Archives
California San Francisco San Francisco Chronicle 1/1/1871–8/31/1984 Newspaper Archives
Connecticut Cheshire Cheshire Citizen, The* 11/20/2012–Current Recent Obituaries
Connecticut New Canaan New Canaan Messenger 1/2/1904–12/25/1909 Newspaper Archives
District of Columbia Washington (DC) Washington Times 3/1/1982–10/31/1989 Newspaper Archives
Idaho Boise Idaho Statesman 10/21/1886–12/6/1970 Newspaper Archives
Idaho Idaho Falls Idaho Falls Times* 5/16/1966–5/31/1966 Newspaper Archives
Indiana Evansville Evansville Courier and Press 1/1/1932–12/31/1937 Newspaper Archives
Kentucky Lexington Lexington Herald-Leader* 3/1/1951–1/8/1984 Newspaper Archives
Kentucky Lexington Lexington Leader 1/1/1965–9/15/1981 Newspaper Archives
Louisiana New Orleans New Orleans States 11/1/1923–11/30/1928 Newspaper Archives
Louisiana New Orleans Times-Picayune 1/1/1860–9/3/1860 Newspaper Archives
Maryland Baltimore Sun 1/28/1921–2/20/1921 Newspaper Archives
Massachusetts Manomet Manomet Current, The* 04/27/2011–Current Recent Obituaries
Mississippi Biloxi Daily Herald* 4/1/1953–12/31/1955 Newspaper Archives
Missouri Kansas City Kansas City Star 5/27/1945–7/12/1945 Newspaper Archives
New Mexico Albuquerque Albuquerque Morning Democrat 9/20/1882–12/30/1885 Newspaper Archives
North Carolina Winston-Salem Winston-Salem Journal 4/1/1921–12/31/1922 Newspaper Archives
Ohio Cleveland Cleveland Leader 7/6/1902–7/6/1902 Newspaper Archives
Oklahoma Coweta Coweta American* 03/13/2006–Current Recent Obituaries
Pennsylvania Bristol* 03/13/2013–Current Recent Obituaries
Pennsylvania State College Centre Daily Times 7/1/1988–12/31/1996 Newspaper Archives
South Carolina Charleston Charleston News and Courier 5/1/1970–5/1/1970 Newspaper Archives
South Carolina Charleston Evening Post 11/1/1977–11/30/1977 Newspaper Archives
Texas Austin Texas State Gazette 8/25/1849–6/7/1851 Newspaper Archives
Texas San Angelo San Angelo LIVE!* 06/09/2015–Current Recent Obituaries
Virginia Dumfries, Stafford, Woodbridge Potomac Local* 06/28/2010–Current Recent Obituaries
West Virginia Charleston Charleston Gazette-Mail* 07/20/2015–Current Recent Obituaries

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Was Your Ancestor’s Marriage Certificate Filed Late?

Everyone is familiar with the regulations that couples wanting to be married need to register and obtain a marriage certificate. This document permits them to be wed by a justice of the peace, minister or other authorized official.

Pastors Liable to Heavy Fines, Oregonian newspaper article 2 September 1906

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 2 September 1906, page 36

Perhaps less well known is the question: Who returns the signed and completed marriage certificate to the town hall or county registrar?

That was the responsibility of the minister or person performing the wedding.
But – sometimes they never filed the paperwork with the government, or filed it very late.

Enter Last Name

The Oregonian reported on this problem in 1906, reporting that: “In years gone by…many marriage certificates were never returned at all.”

The old news article went on to cite multiple examples of late filing of the documents.

article about Rev. Ghormley being fined for filing marriage certificates late, Oregonian newspaper article 2 September 1906

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 2 September 1906, page 36

For example, the Greenwood-Mitchell marriage certificate wasn’t filed until six years after their marriage. Cases like this can make it difficult for genealogists to locate their ancestors’ marriage certificate.

Genealogy Tip:

When you are searching for a birth, marriage or death certificate, remember: they are often filed in chronological order by the date that they are received in the clerk’s office, not necessarily the date of the event. Be sure to search for several years after you believe the event occurred to make sure you find the certificate. Registrars often received “Delayed Registrations” years after the event occurred.

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