The Guardian

Newspapers.com now has issues of the Guardian, one of the United Kingdom’s leading national papers! With issues dating back to 1821, you can explore nearly 200 years of British news and history.

Sample The Guardian front pageThe Guardian was founded in 1821 in the industrial city of Manchester, where the paper would remain (as the Manchester Guardian) until the 1960s, when it moved to London. The paper first began with weekly issues (and later twice weekly issues), since a tax on newspapers made it too costly to publish more frequently. But after about 30 years, after the government dropped the tax, the Guardian began publishing daily in 1855.

Originally founded as left-leaning paper, the paper temporarily shifted right in its early years, before returning to the left, where it remains today (in the center-left). Though it was long an important regional paper, the Guardian first gained its reputation nationally and internationally during the 57-year tenure of editor C.P. Scott, which began in 1872.

The Guardian remains internationally respected today and is particularly known for its investigative journalism. The Guardian has been owned by a trust (now a limited company) since 1936, which allows the paper to maintain its financial and editorial independence. After the paper’s move to London in 1964, it faced greater competition and financial challenges, but a series of innovations and redesigns in the 1970s and ’80s (and in the decades since) allowed the Guardian to maintain its status as a leading national paper of the UK.

Since the Guardian was long based in Manchester, the paper can be a good resource for finding ancestors from that area, particularly if they were involved in any news-worthy events. Even if you don’t find mentions of your relatives, the Guardian is rich in information about what was going on in Manchester (and later, London) and the rest of the nation, enabling you to learn about local and national events that may have affected your family members.

With a Newspapers.com Basic subscription, you can view issues of the Guardian from 1821 to 1900; or, with a Publisher Extra subscription, view those early years plus issues from 1901 to 2003. Issues of the Guardian’s sister paper, the Observer, are also available (1791–1900 with a Basic subscription; 1791–2003 with Publisher Extra).

The Pedestrianism Craze

In the late 1800s, the spectacle of competitive walking was all the rage. Sometimes it took place in arenas with other pedestrians in the form of hours- or days-long “races,” and sometimes it was performed solo as feats of distance and time.
Ada Anderson, famous female pedestrian

Not everyone was a fan, particularly when pedestrianism spectacles took place on the Sabbath:

Not Everyone Pleased with PedestrianismNot until the invention of the safety bicycle (the sort we’re familiar with today) did the thrilling sport of pedestrianism fade into history.

It was the bicycle which killed pedestrianism

Find more on pedestrianism in the pages of Newspapers.com.

The Bobbed-Hair Bandit

Her crimes and her style made her an iconic figure in 1920s New York. Stop anyone in the street to ask them their thoughts and some might say she was a figurehead of women’s liberation. Others might say she was a prime example of the corrupted “modern woman.” All would say she was called the Bobbed-Hair Bandit.
Bobbed-Hair BanditIt seems Celia Cooney’s lawless career began rather simply. She and her husband, Ed Cooney, disenchanted with their meager circumstances, first began robbing stores with a misguided “get-rich-quick” kind of philosophy. Celia only ever wanted to be a proper housewife with her own home and furnishings and to take care of the child she was pregnant with at the time (who, sadly, passed away only days after birth). The Cooneys kept their crimes small and simple—no shots fired, no injured parties. Just hold ups and extra cash.
Bobbed-Hair Bandit SummarizedThe Cooney’s final robbery, described in part above, ended up being witnessed by enough people that the “Bobbed-Hair Bandit” was discovered. Her true name was revealed, along with that of her “tall companion,” and their three-month adventure in crime came to an end with long sentences in separate prisons. 
(Sensationalized) Account of their CaptureEd Cooney tried to help Celia by confessing that he was the reason for it all, but Celia denied this, saying, “if it had not been for me Edward would have gone straight. I was the cause of all the trouble.”
Not Much Romance to the Girl BanditAlienist (noun): former term for a psychiatrist.

Find more on Celia and Edward Cooney with a search on Newspapers.com, or check out this great article on the topic by Atlas Obscura.

The Red Cross School for War Brides

In the years following WWII, many U.S. soldiers were stationed in Japan as the country came under Allied occupation. Despite differences in culture and resentment on both sides for atrocities committed during the war, thousands of romances blossomed between the G.I.s and Japanese women. To help numerous Japanese brides learn the customs of their husbands’ country before they moved to their new homes, organizations like the Red Cross created bride schools.
Red Cross brides' school

The schools focused primarily on teaching the “war brides,” as they were called, some fundamentals of American culture. Cooking, etiquette, homemaking, and fashion were the main focus, while history and politics—though present in the lessons—took up the rear due to prevailing gender roles of the time.

The schools’ ethnocentrism often came off a bit patronizing, especially in retrospect, but the American teachers did occasionally learn some things themselves.

brides' school

Instructed in American hair-dos

Occasionally the teaching went both ways

Find more on these schools for War Brides with a search on Newspapers.com.

“War Time” Daylight Saving Begins: February 9, 1942

U.S. Presidential Inauguration: January 20, 2017

On February 9, 1942, “War Time”—a year-round daylight saving time—began in the United States. Passed by Congress and signed into law by President Franklin D. Roosevelt, the year-round daylight saving time required that clocks be moved ahead one hour for the remainder of the war as a national defense measure to conserve energy.

Missouri votes on daylight saving time, 1947America first implemented a partial-year daylight saving time in March 1918, during World War I, and though there was popular support for the wartime measure, there was also disapproval, primarily from farmers and the railroads. The national daylight saving time was repealed after the war ended, but it continued on at the local level, especially in the North, East, and parts of the Midwest.

A national daylight saving time was again implemented during World War II, but this time, rather than lasting only part of the year, daylight saving time lasted all year. The purpose of “War Time,” as this form of daylight saving time was called, was to conserve power and provide extra daylight for war industries to increase production. As with World War I, after World War II ended, the national daylight saving time was quickly repealed, but it remained a local issue, with each state, city, and even business deciding whether it would adopt daylight saving time or not.

This patchwork form of daylight saving time caused much inconvenience and confusion, and in 1966 a national law was signed calling for daylight saving time to fall from the last Sunday in April to the last Sunday in October, with the option for states to exempt themselves. The energy crisis of the 1970s once again prompted the adoption of a year-round daylight saving time beginning in January 1974, but it actually only lasted 10 months, as legislation was signed adjusting yet again the time period of daylight saving time.

Another bill was signed in 1986 that moved daylight saving time to the period from the first Sunday in April to the last Sunday of October. This remained the law for many years until the most recent daylight saving legislation, implemented in 2007, set daylight saving time from the second Sunday in March to the first Sunday in November.

Daylight saving time has remained a contentious issue in the United States ever since it was first implemented during World War I, as people debate its effect on energy, safety, farming, and much more. However, most of the United States now follows daylight saving time, with the exception of Arizona, Hawaii, and the U.S. territories.

Want to learn more about the history of daylight saving time? Start a search on Newpapers.com!

The Amazons, the Bodyguard…the Suffragettes

When you think of the original suffragettes, what comes to mind? Pinned up hair and modest dresses? Marches and lifted signs? Jiu-jitsu?
She Teaches Jiu Jitsu to the SuffragettesA woman named Edith Margaret Garrud, having previously learned the art of jiu-jitsu from instructors Edward William Barton-Wright (the first jiu-jitsu teacher in Europe) and Sadakazu Uyenishi, used her knowledge to teach classes of her own for the Women’s Social and Political Union in the UK. The object of “suffrajitsu,” as it was called by journalists, was to help suffragettes resist police interference in meetings and protect against arrests and rearrests.
Jiu-Jitsu for the SuffragettesThe article above does not exaggerate. This particular group of suffragettes were themselves quite militant, breaking windows and setting fires. This led to some rough handling by the police trying to arrest them despite desperate resistance. Once jailed, many of the women engaged in hunger strikes and were force fed through tubes. Later, introduction of the Cat and Mouse Act allowed for suffragette leaders to be released from jail so they would eat again, only to be rearrested for the same crimes once they’d regained their health. These sorts of rearrests were just one of the things fought against by “the Bodyguard” or “the Amazons”—the women who learned jiu-jitsu and used it to defend Suffrage leaders.
They surprised their World War I slowed the movement significantly, but Garrud’s jiu-jitsu and self-defense classes continued until her retirement in the mid-20s. She lived another 50 years and died at the age of 99. Speaks well for the practice of martial arts, don’t you think?

Find more on Garrud and her jiu-jitsu suffragettes with a search on Newspapers.com, or try browsing through at your leisure for clippings of interest to you.

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The Greatest Lawman in the Old West

U.S. Deputy Marshal Bass Reeves is the subject of today’s blog post, and a worthy subject he is. He was one of the first black deputy marshals west of the Mississippi, and thus had the authority to arrest any and all who deserved it, regardless of race or gender. Tough, fearless, and practically invincible during his 32-year career, he was the absolute best at what he did.
Bass ReevesReeves was a clever and honorable man who was unfailing in his devotion to his duty. Once a warrant found its way into his hands, he was tireless in his efforts to see the criminal brought to justice. And Bass Reeves always got his man. Stealth and disguise were his companions in many of his arrests:
Disguise and Deception: Bass ReevesHe claimed to have brought some 3,000 felons to justice during his work in Arkansas and the Oklahoma territory. Though he was responsible for the deaths of fourteen men, he was said to have only ever killed in defense of his own life (despite finding himself in many dangerous situations):
Close calls, but he never shot a man if he could help itOne instance that perhaps best demonstrates Reeves’ convictions was the arrest of his own son, Bennie Reeves, for murder:
Arrested his son for murderIllness led to Reeves’ retirement in 1907. He died three years later from nephritis at the impressive age of 72, having never been wounded in the line of duty.
True American HeroFind more on this fascinating character of Old West history with a search on Newspapers.com. He was also a primary character in the most recent episode of Timeless, “The Murder of Jesse James”. Though the show claims the Lone Ranger was based off of Reeves, there is no evidence to solidify this link. Still, it can confidently be said that Bass Reeves was about as close to a real-life Lone Ranger as a person can get.

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800+ Newspapers Added in 2016!

2016 was a great year for Newspapers.com. We added over 800 new papers to our site, which adds up to an additional 100 million+ pages of new content! Can you believe it? That means Newspapers.com now has upwards of 4,400 papers, with more coming in 2017. Finding your ancestors in the newspaper has never been easier!

With so many titles added to our site in 2016, some of them may have escaped your notice. So here’s a look at four major papers added to Newspapers.com last year:

The Los Angeles Times. Explore 135 years of Southern California history! Established in 1881, the Los Angeles Times has been the leading paper in the City of Angels since the 1940s, winning 42 Pulitzer Prizes to date. Newspapers.com has issues from 1881–2016.

Sample The Los Angeles Times front page

The Philadelphia Inquirer. One of the oldest surviving papers in the United States, the Philadelphia Inquirer gained its reputation during the Civil War, when it became one of the best-regarded papers for accurate war news. One of the nation’s most prominent papers, the Inquirer focused on comprehensive news coverage for much of its history, making it a particularly valuable source for learning about the events and issues prevalent in your ancestors’ day. Newspapers.com has issues from 1860–2016.

Sample The Philadelphia Inquirer

The Arizona Republic. When the paper began publishing in 1890, there were already two papers in Phoenix, but by 1915 the Arizona Republic had become the largest paper in the state. The Republic boasted full coverage of the Associated Press wires, as well as coverage of news from the city of Phoenix and the rest of Arizona. Newspapers.com has issues from 1890–2016.

Sample Arizona Republic front page

The Des Moines Register. A daily morning paper for much of its history, the Des Moines Register grew to become the most influential newspaper in Iowa and an important regional paper. If you have ancestors from Iowa, the Des Moines Register is a great place to look for them, as the paper historically had strong local and statewide coverage and also published numerous photographs of locals. Newspapers.com has issues from 1871–2016.

Sample The Des Moines Register front page

To stay up-to-date with Newspapers.com’s newest additions, check out the New & Updated page.

*With a Newspapers.com Basic subscription, you can see issues of these papers through 1922; or, with a Publisher Extra subscription, access those early years and additional issues from 1923 onward.