Finding Articles from the 18th, 19th, or early 20th Century in British Periodicals and Newspapers

This page is designed to provide researchers with information that will help them to choose between a wide range of resources for identifying, locating, or accessing periodical and newspaper articles from the 18th, 19th, or early 20th centuries.

Online Full-Text Resources

  • British Periodicals (Collections I and II)
    Provides full-text and full-image access to hundreds of periodicals from the late seventeenth to the early twentieth century.  Topics covered include literature, philosophy, history, science, the fine arts, the social sciences, music, archaeology and architecture.
    British Periodicals (Collections I & II)
    are also fully included and searchable within: Periodicals Archive Online
  • The Economist historical archive
    Delivers a complete searchable copy of every issue of The Economist from 1843 to 2010. New full-colour images, multiple search indexes, exportable financial tables and a gallery of front covers highlighting a key topic of each week - all combine to offer a primary source of research covering the 19th and 20th centuries. Can be cross-searched with other periodicals and newspapers in Gale NewsVault
  • Eighteenth century journals : a portal to newspapers and periodicals, c1685-1815  
    Full-text and page-image access to newspapers and periodicals printed between c1685-1815. Contains materials from: the Hope Collection at the Bodleian Library, Oxford; the Harry Ransom Humanities Research Center University of Texas; the British Newspaper Library at Colindale, London; the Cambridge University Library; Chetham's Library, Manchester; and Brotherton Library, University of Leeds.
  • Financial times historical archive 1888-2010
    Delivers the complete searchable run of the world's most authoritative daily business newspaper. Every item ever printed in the paper, from 1888-2010, can be searched and browsed article by article and page by page.  Can be cross-searched with other periodicals and newspapers in Gale NewsVault
  • Gale newsvault   (Gale Cengage Learning)
    Users can simultaneously search or browse across multiple databases of historical newspaper and/or periodical literature. These include: 17th and 18th Century Burney Collection Newspapers; 19th Century British Library Newspapers, Part I; 19th Century UK Periodicals; 19th Century U.S. Newspapers; Illustrated London News Historical Archive; Times Digital Archive; and Times Literary Supplement Historical Archive.
  • Gerritsen Collection: Women's History Online, 1543-1945
    Focus: American, British, and European, 1543-1945 (most materials are 1880-1920)
    Full-text collection of books and periodicals relating to the history of women, women's rights, and women's suffrage.
  • Illustrated London News historical archive, 1842-2003  
    Unprecedented online access to the entire run of the Illustrated London News from its first publication on 14 May 1842 to its last in 2003. Each page has been digitally reproduced in full colour and every article and caption is full-text searchable with hit-term highlighting and links to corresponding illustrations. Also fully included and searchable within Gale newsvault
  • Internet Library of Early Journals: A Digital Library of 18th and 19th Century Journals
    Focus: British, 18th and 19th centuries
    Provides digitized page images covering at least twenty consecutive years for six journals: Gentleman's Magazine, The Annual Register, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Notes and Queries, The Builder, and Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine. Search options vary by title, ranging from browse only, to searching by subject headings, to searching full text.
  • Ireland collection (JSTOR)
    "The Ireland Collection, developed in cooperation with Queen's University Belfast, is an interdisciplinary collection of journals and other materials. It will contain a minimum of 107 journals, including journals with moving walls between 1 and 5 years and ceased journals from the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. Over 200 monographs and 2,500 manuscript pages will also be included."
  • Irish newspaper archives  
    A keyword searchable online archive of Irish newspaper titles. "Contains over 6 million pages in over 500,000 issues of Irish Newspaper publications. With national daily editions such as the Irish Independent, regional weekly editions including the Connacht Tribune, Kerryman and Anglo-Celt and out of print publications such as the Freeman's Journal and The Nation." Coverage varies by title, extending back as far as 1763.
    Focus: American and British, beginning 1665
    Searchable full text, displayed as page images, for more than 600 key scholarly journals beginning with their earliest issue. A “moving wall” (generally ranging from 3 to 5 years) separates the latest issue available in JSTOR from the most recently published issue of the journal.
  • 19th Century British Library Newspapers
    Searchable full text of full runs of more than 45 newspapers specially selected by the British Library to best represent nineteenth-century Britain. This new collection includes national and regional newspapers, as well as newspapers from: established country or university towns; the new industrial powerhouses of the manufacturing Midlands; and Scotland, Ireland and Wales. Special attention was paid to include newspapers that helped lead particular political or social movements such as Reform, Chartism, and Home Rule. Penny papers aimed at the working and clerical classes are also included. Also fully included and searchable within Gale newsvault
  • 19th Century UK Periodicals
    Provides full-text and full-page-image access to 19th century British periodicals.  Periodicals are grouped in cross-searchable topical series. Currently contains Series 1, New Readerships: Women and Children, Sports and Leisure,  Humour and Satire; and Series 2, Empire: Travel and Anthropology, Economics, Missionary and Colonial. Also fully included and searchable within Gale newsvault
  • Periodicals Archive Online
    Focus: American, British, and European
    Coverage: 1665-2000
    Archive of hundreds of digitised journals published in the arts, humanities, social sciences, and areas of general popular interest. Each periodical is covered back to its first issue, regardless of when it began publication. International in scope, Periodicals Archive Online covers periodicals in a number of Western languages. Includes British Periodicals Collections I & II.
  • ProQuest historical newspapers
    The Guardian (1821-2003) and The Observer (1791-2003)
    The Irish Times (1859-2011) and The Weekly Irish Times (1876-1958)
    The Scotsman (1817-1950)
    The Times of India (1838-2003)
  • 17th-18th Century Burney Collection Newspapers
    Searchable full-text access to the British Library's collection of the newspapers, pamphlets, and books gathered by Reverend Charles Burney (1757-1817)--the largest and most comprehensive collection of early English news media. More than twelve hundred titles and almost one million pages are included. Also fully included and searchable within Gale newsvault
  • Times Digital Archive
    Focus: British, 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries
    Full-text and full-image articles from the Times of London for 1785-1985. Also fully included and searchable within Gale newsvault
  • The TLS historical archive, 1902-2005
    Type of Resource: Full text and full page image Coverage: 1902-2005A fully searchable resource containing every page of the Times Literary Supplement from 1902 to 2005. Also fully included and searchable within Gale newsvault
    NOTE: for listings of articles appearing in TLS subsequent to 2005, see Humanities Full Text.


Online Indexes

  • The Wellesley index to Victorian periodicals, 1824-1900
    The vast majority of articles written for Victorian periodicals were published anonymously, or under pseudonyms. The Wellesley Index identifies the authors of articles within major Victorian periodicals, and provides a bibliography for each contributor. 45 important monthly and quarterly titles are included, covering the period from the beginning of the Westminster Review in 1824 to the end of the century. The exception to this is the Edinburgh Review, which is indexed from first issue, in 1802. Wellesley does not index poetry. 
  • Nineteenth-Century Masterfile
    Focus: American and British, 19th Century
    Integrates a number of indexes to nineteenth-century printed material into one database. Includes: Poole's Index to Periodical Literature (1802-1906), and other general periodical indexes; New York Daily Tribune Index (1875-1906), New York Times Index (1863-1905), and other indexes devoted to specific newspaper or periodical titles; as well as specialized indexes for law, religion, and government documents. Now includes links to full-text articles for selected periodicals.
  • Historical Newspapers Online
    Focus: American and British, beginning 1790
    Electronic form of the indexes to the London Times and the New York Times. Currently covers the London Times beginning 1790 and the New York Times beginning 1851.
  • Readers Guide Retrospective
    Focus: American with limited coverage of British, 1890-1982.
    Provides listings of articles in popular and general-interest periodicals published in the United States. Coverage includes literary works published in those periodicals (short stories, poetry, etc.)

To Identify Additional Relevant Indexes

For a fuller listing and discussion of periodical guides and/or indexes, see:

Balay, Robert. Early periodical indexes : bibliographies and indexes of literature published in periodicals before 1900. (Lanham, Md. : Scarecrow Press, 2000)
Butler Reference R016.05 B18

Bibliographies, Directories and Histories

Bibliographies, directories, and histories can provide you with varying types and degrees of information about specific periodicals or newspapers and/or about the periodical press as a whole in a given time period. A major example of such a work would be:

Using CLIO to Identify Additional Resources

Books and other information resources about periodicals and newspapers can be searched in CLIO under the appropriate subject headings.

  1. In the “Basic Search” screen of CLIO, select "Subject Heading" from the “In:” box menu.
  2. Enter searches using subject headings as appropriate, for example:

english periodicals
english newspapers

british periodicals
british newspapers

Note: Use "british" for books about periodicals or newspapers of the British Isles or Great Britain, not limited to periodicals from one area.  Books limiting their focus to periodicals or newspapers from one area are entered under the specific heading for that area: for example, English periodicals; Scottish periodicals; Irish newspapers, etc.

Once you have done your subject search in CLIO:

  • Look at the overall list of entries to see how the subject is broken down. If you are interested in finding more of the types of resources listed on this page, you should be attentive to subheadings such as those below:

english periodicals--bibliography
english periodicals--directories
english periodicals--history
english periodicals--indexes

  • Click "More Info" next to the "English Periodicals" subject heading to see more specialized subject headings that you may wish to use, for example:

children’s periodicals, english
women’s periodicals, english