Out-of-the-County Newspapers?

When considering newspapers to search for ancestral references, it is important to remember how far away the newspaper was instead of where the county line was at.

Newspapers in the nearest “big town” may have published items from the outlying area, including obituaries, death notices, and the occasional “locals” or gossip column. In researching my own ancestors in southern Hancock County, Illinois, I’ve had success locating them in newspapers published in the Iowa town across the Mississippi River, the county seat paper in the county to the south, and a few weekly papers published in the county to the south as well.

There’s no doubt that the closer the newspaper’s location to your ancestor’s location, the more items it could contain about them. But ignoring nearby papers “across some political border” could leave references to your ancestor unfound.

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