I have been researching the background circumstances surrounding the writing of a particular poem, in addition to more information about the author.

I've had a small degree of success finding information searching various publications viewable on Google Books and other websites. However, I seem to have reached a dead end, as my clues lead me to the Richmond Enquirer circa 1826-1835.

There seem to be few copies of this newspaper online. I have found some on various sites, but none from the date range that I need. The copies on Google News Archives are also beyond the date range I need. I tried the Library of Congress online archives, but could only find selections.

Thomas Jefferson stated that the Richmond Enquirer was "the best [newspaper] that is published or ever has been published in America". With this reputation, one would think an online database might exist...

Can anyone point me in the right direction? Thank you!

  • 4
    This question appears to be off-topic because it is a reference request, a kind of question specifically excluded history.stackexchange.com/tour Feb 18 '14 at 3:55
  • IMHO this question is a bit different. He knows what references he needs; he just wants to know how to locate them. That seems like an eminently answerable question.
    – T.E.D.
    Feb 18 '14 at 5:01
  • Thanks, T.E.D. I was afraid that some might see this as a reference request, but in reality I'm not seeking information, but answers to continue the research on my own. I thought history would be the best place to ask a question regarding a historical newspaper.
    – user3451
    Feb 18 '14 at 14:23
  • @T.E.D. - should this be explicitly discussed on Meta so we have a well enounciated policy on "where do I find material X" ontopicness?
    – DVK
    Feb 19 '14 at 2:07
  • Unfortunately, all the southern newspapers and their archives were burned during the occupation of the confederate states from 1865 to 1875. Apr 27 '15 at 16:50

Generally, I believe the best place to find old copies of city newspapers is in the archives of the city in question's Public Library. I know mine has every back issue of the two major local papers (at one time we had two) on microfiche, and perhaps in more modern forms now as well. So I'd think the best place to look would be the Richmond Public Library.

Rather than waste a lot of time spelunking on their website, I'd get their phone number and talk to a librarian there directly. Tell them what you are looking for. Finding information is their full-time job, and they are way better and faster at it than you or I will ever be.

  • Good points. I thought perhaps it was historically significant enough to be accessible on a national level, but maybe I'm wrong. Going local may be the best option. I do like spelunking, though. :)
    – user3451
    Feb 18 '14 at 14:37