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Newsboy Oliver E. Boykins on his route in 1953.  From a 2012 exhibition, "Growing Up AFRO: Snapshots of Black Childhood from the Afro-American Newspaper," at the  Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture


Directories of Current Black Newspapers

  • National Newspaper Publishers Association (NNPA): Also known as the Black Press of America,the NNPA, founded in 1941, is a federation of more than 200 independent black newspapers from across the United States and the Virgin Islands. Since World War II, it has also served as the industry’s news service, a position that it has held without peer or competitor since the Associated Negro Press dissolved by 1970. In 2001, the NNPA, in association with the NNPA Foundation, began building the BlackPressUSA Network -- the nation’s premier network of local black community news and information portals. 

  • Huria Search: a curated list of inks to independent black newspapers across the country which are members of the NNPA and have a website.  Huria (which means "liberty" also offers a customized search engine  of the contents of these newspapers, together with black magazines and other media.

Newspaper Checklists and Collection Guides

These guides typically identify newspaper titles, their geographic location/reach, and the libraries and repositories which have original or microform copies. Some of these guides will also provide brief publication histories, identify the subject focus of the newspaper, and list its editors.   

African-American Newspapers and Periodicals: a National Bibliography. Ed. James P. Danky and Maureen E. Hady. Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1998: Currently the most exhaustive guide to newspaper holdings in U.S. libraries. Identifies more than 6,000 African-American newspapers and periodicals, of all types, publsihed between 1827 and 1998.

Important bibliographies before Danky's:

Newspaper Indexes

These print resources can identify item-level contents of newspapers.

Antebellum Black Newspapers: Indices to New York Freedom's Journal (1827-1829), The Rights of All (1829), The Weekly Advocate (1837), and The Colored American (1837-1841). Ed. Donald M. Jacobs. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, c1976.

Antislavery Newspapers and Periodicals. Ed. John W. Blassingame and Mae G. Henderson. Boston : G.K. Hall, c1980-c1984. 5 volumes.  A 5-volume set, arranged chronologically, that lists and annotates letters which appeared in selected 19th-century abolitionist newspapers and journals.  Each volume also includes an "Index of Correspondents."

  • Vol. 1: Philanthropist, 1817-1818; Tennessee Emancipator, 1820; Abolition Intelligencer, 1822-23; Genius of Universal Emancipation, 1821-39; African Observer, 1827-1828; and the Boston (Ma.) Liberator, 1831-1845.
  • Vol. 2: Liberator, 1846-1865; New York Anti-Slavery Record, 1835-38; New York Human Rights, 1835-38; Observer,1835-38.
  • Vol. 3: Friend of Man, 1836-42; Pennsylvania Freeman, 1836-54; Advocate of Freedom, 1838-41; and the New York American & Foreign Anti-Slavery Reporter, 1840-46.
  • Vol. 4: National Anti-Slavery Standard, 1840-1860
  • Vol. 5National Anti-Slavery Standard, 1861-1870

Black Newspapers Index (1987 - present) Updated quarterly, the Black Newspapers Index is a finding aid to the articles  that appear in the following newspapers: Afro-American (Baltimore), American Muslim Journal (Chicago) Amsterdam News (New York), Chicago Defender, Call & Post (Cleveland), Daily World (Atlanta), Journal and Guide (Norfolk VA), Sentinel (Los Angeles), and the Michigan Chronicle. This publication continues the earlier Index to Black Newspapers (1977-1986).

Types of content indexed: feature articles; editorials; obituaries; commentaries; sports articles; business and financial news; reviews of books, art exhibitions, dance, movies, music, restaurants, theater, and television. Excluded content: society announcements, self-help columns, meeting notices, horoscopes, advertising, television schedules, comic strips, and general weather reports.

Blacks in Selected Newspapers, Censuses and Other Sources: an Index to Names and Subjects.  3 vols. Compiled by James de T. Abajian. Boston: G. K. Hall, 1977.

Blacks in Selected Newspapers, Censuses and Other Sources : an Index to Names and Subjects. First supplement. 2 vols. Compiled by James de T. Abajian. Boston : G.K. Hall, 1985.

The Kaiser Index to Black Resources, 1948-1986. Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture of the New York Public Library. Brooklyn, N.Y. : Carlson Pub., 1992. 5 vols.  One of the most important and unique finding aids from the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, the Kaiser Index provides  more than 179,000 citations to articles in thousands of issues of black magazines and newspapers.