A cooperative effort between Oregon State University Libraries and Press, the Benton County Historical Society and Museum, and the University of Oregon’s Knight Library has led to a newly digitized collection of newspapers from Corvallis’ history. Copies of the Corvallis Times and the Corvallis Gazette, dating from 1863 to 1909, are now available online at oregonnews.uoregon.edu.
The recent microfilming and digitization of these two papers not only adds to the Oregon Digital Newspaper Program, but, according to Irene Zenev, Executive Director of Benton County Historical Society and Museum, it’s a great help to scholars. “This is a powerful resource for researchers, genealogists, and historians, not to mention students of all ages,” she said.
Larry Landis, Special Collection Director at the OSU library, said of the project, “Having this content available online will be a boon to many researchers, especially as OSU moves toward its 150th anniversary in 2018.” The project relied on original newspapers, which were held in the collections of OSU’s Valley Library and in the Benton County Historical Society and Museum.
According to Landis, this development is important not only to researchers but to everyday citizens of Corvallis. He said, “People who want to learn about who lived in their historic house,” can do that. You can also find out the history of your favorite parks, your child’s school, and certain community events.
One of Landis’ favorite things about these papers is that they reported things that we don’t think about. For example, instead of car accidents, horse and buggy accidents were reported. They also reported on who was visiting town, usually important people who meant a lot to the community.
The project took over two years to complete, mostly because the original microfilms were too damaged to use, so the University of Oregon re-microfilmed the papers. Once that process was done, the rest went quickly.
You can view the papers for yourself by going to oregonnews.uoregon.edu. It’s never too late to learn new things about the place you live!
By Kyra Blank