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Historical Newspapers in Public Libraries


Wednesday, May 1, 2024
1 – 2 p.m. CDT
Cost: Free

Join us for discussion of digitization, preservation and access for local historical newspapers with the Columbus Metropolitan Library’s Local History & Genealogy team.

Note: An ASL Interpreter and Certified Deaf Interpreter will be present for this webinar.

We will discuss:

  • The acquisition, impact, promotion and use of the Columbus Dispatch digital archive with NewsBank
  • Efforts to digitize small and minority-owned newspapers
  • Acquisition and processing of the Columbus Dispatch photo archive

Learning Outcomes

  • Understand the value of digitized historical newspapers.
  • Be able to make decisions about various options for digitizing newspapers.
  • Have an awareness of preservation challenges surrounding different formats for historical newspapers (hard copy, microfilm and digital).

Who Should Attend

The primary audience is libraries who are either already working with historical newspaper collections or are considering the acquisition/purchase of a physical or digital collection. Our perspective is that of an urban public library, although others in academic and special libraries will also find this content relevant.


Angela O’Neal is the Manager of Local History and Genealogy at the Columbus Metropolitan Library. Notable projects include establishing a Digital Hubs for Central Ohio and creating the Ohio Digital Network for DPLA. Prior to CML, Angela was the director of collections services at the Ohio History Connection, where she developed Ohio Memory and established Ohio’s Chronicling America project. She is a board member of Ohio Humanities, Trillium Press and serves as Chair-Elect of the American Library Association’s RUSA History Section. She was previously president of the Society of Ohio Archivists. Angela has bachelor’s degrees in history and cultural anthropology and a master’s of library and information science, all from Kent State University.

Aaron O’Donovan is a Special Collections Supervisor at the Columbus Metropolitan Library. He manages the local history collection at the library, as well as managing the My History project that provides digital images of Ohio and the city of Columbus to the world. He has presented at conferences including those for the Community Webs program at the Internet Archive, The Best Practices Exchange, the Ohio Library Council, and the Society of Ohio Archivists. He also has appeared numerous times on the PBS affiliate WOSU Columbus Neighborhoods series as a digitization and local history expert. Aaron has a bachelor’s degree in sociology from The Ohio State University and a master’s of library and information science from Kent State University.

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