When looking about ancestors 2 to 3 generations back (pre-1930s) and further, more than likely they would have been farmers, somewhere in the country. There are many journals and newspapers produced over the decades for farmers and ranchers.
On the site titled ‘The Ancestor Hunter’ is a section about the many farmer related newspapers that were produced. This section is ‘Historic American Farming Newspapers‘.
This free online collection has some 130 journals and newspapers that carried information for and about ordinary farmers in different parts of the country. It is organized by states along with the dates that are covered. Click on the ‘blue’ links to view. Not every state is available, but there are some 28 states are there. Several states have a wide selection of newspapers – Illinois with about 25 plus newspapers over different eras.
Use the search boxes for each to start with a surname or a hometown. Remember to try different family names, especially the maiden names of female ancestors.
Each is set up in their own style, so do review each. A couple of the links are not active, but try another one or do a Google search using the name of that journal or newspaper. Most are part of the Library of Congress collection of newspaper – so they are easy to search, read and copy articles.
Photos: Boys on the farm in 1880s and Front page of Progressive Farmer in 1906 in North Carolina.
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