15,273,703 Pages of Vintage US Newspapers

Thanks to the Library of Congress online site ‘Chronicling America‘ it has been making millions of American newspapers in a digital format covering a span of 1789 to 1963. More continue to be added with the number of digital pages at 15.2 million.

It is such a great resource, for not just looking up any personal articles or obituaries on your ancestors but also the businesses they may have owned, plus historical events in their hometown, county or state.

Do not limit yourself to just a hometown or county area, check surrounding counties and neighboring states. Use the advanced search with a surname, a town or business name plus a time frame, but do make it a broad time period. Many times a reference will be made in the news about a person who has been deceased for a number of years, so additional information there. Also, a given name and surname can also appear as his widow’s name “Mrs. John W. Johnson”.

It is easy to negotiate the site and find some information. It can be amazing what you might come across.

Here is an interesting discovery of Monday, June 29, 1896


Etta Rice and Richard Dudrear were arrested Saturday morning in a home on North Paca Street, Baltimore, by Detectives Hall and O’Donnell, who had received instructions from the Frederick authorities to do so. A telegram from Frederick stated that the charge against the woman it adultery, while her companion Is charged with adultery, desertion and non-support of his family. The couple left Frederick about the 1st of June, and, after staying two weeks in Annapolis went to Baltimore. They refused to make a statement, and were committed by Justice Snitter for the action of the Frederick county authorities.

Yesterday they were brought back to this court and committed to jail until a hearing before Magistrate Biser today at 3 p.m. Dudrear is a son-in-law of Captain Joseph Groff, of Frederick, and was for some time clerk at the Groff Hotel here.

Prior to his recent escapade he left with Mrs. Rice for Alexandria, Va., but came back again afterwards, deserting his family the second time.

Both Etta and Richard had to pay fines. His wife, Fannie Groff Dudrear still refers to herself as married in the 1900 census, but Richard is not living with her. By 1910 she refers to herself as a widow. He may have died prior to 1910. Etta Rice, married to Edgar Rice in 1891, was not faithful to him during all this time.

Quite a ‘soap opera’ true story. The site ‘Chronicling America‘ is good to keep rechecking as new papers are added.

Photo: 1896 article

Related FamilyTree.com Blogs:

Newspaper Details

Articles in Hometown Newspapers

Small Town Papers

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