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A Guide to Using the Historical South Carolina Newspapers Database

How to Browse and learn what newspapers are available

Two minute Video on Searching
Simple search options are on the landing pages and advanced search is linked at the top.  Advanced search allows for narrowing the dates and search terms. See tutorial for more details.

Advaned Searching Tips

Tips to Try in Your Research
1. Search variations on names. Full names are not always printed in historic newspapers as they are today. Men's first names can be shortened or only initials (ie: William Jonathan Taylor may be printed as  Wm. Taylor or W.J. Taylor). Married women may be listed under their husband's name (ie: Mrs. William Taylor).

2. Be aware of historic terminology.  Langauge changes over time. so it is important to understand that some terms commonplace today were not used when the paper was printed.

     A. Searching for marriage or wedding may not produce many results.  Try "nuptials" or "hymeaneal" in conjunction with a family name for possible results.

     B. Instead of African Americans, try Afro-American, colored, free persons of color, negro, or slave.

When you do locate results, take note of the terms or words used in that article for later searches.

3.  Be patient. While these two repositories make historic newspapers more accessible than ever before, the research process still requires time and patience.  Every newpaper page is run through OPtical Character Recognition (OCR) technology to enable keyword searching, but this process is not 100% accurate.

4. Limit the date range to narrow the results. When searching for a specific event or person, try altering the date range by usiong the Advanced Search. Dates can be limited to a range of years or to a set of specific dates.