Centralia, Eatonville, Spokane historic newspapers join digital collection

Centralia, Eatonville, Spokane historic newspapers join digital collection


Front page of Dec. 20, 1956, edition of The Eatonville Dispatch (Image courtesy Washington State Library)

Nearly 50,000 newly digitized pages from historic newspapers based in Centralia, Eatonville, Tacoma and Spokane are being added to the Washington State Library’s online newspaper collection this year.

The latest titles are the Centralia Daily Hub (1914-16), The Eatonville Dispatch (1916-61) and Den Danske Kronike (1916-17), a Danish-English publication based in Spokane. The Centralia and Eatonville papers were added this month. Den Danske Kronike was added last summer, along with the Tacoma Evening Telegraph (1886-87).

They and other historic newspapers can be found on the State Library’s Washington Digital Newspapers website.

With the generous support of the Larkin family (publishers between 1950 and 1974) and the most recent publisher (Realty in Motion, LLC), the early years of The Eatonville Dispatch are now available online. Editions from that era illustrate the impact of events such as World War I, mill fires, World War II, Japanese internment and post-WWII Operation Bootstrap on local citizens. Insights into the daily lives of several generations of citizens unfold through the Cruiser student newspaper, graduations, marriages, births and seasonal celebrations each year.

The Centralia Daily Hub chronicled the daily activities of Western Washington high society, struggles of the Temperance Movement between the “dry” counties and local law enforcement efforts to stop the booze run through their communities.

Washington State Library volunteer Karen Fieldman introduced the State Library to the Den Danske Kronike, published in Spokane by her grandfather, Ingvard Eskeberg, until he folded the publication to head to Europe to fight for America in WWI.  The weekly newspaper proclaimed to serve over 10,000 Norwegian and Danish speakers in the Pacific Northwest.

The State Library launched the website in late July and are beginning to merge the library’s Historic Newspapers collection with newspapers digitized for the National Digital Newspaper Program into the Washington Digital Newspapers collection so all issues will have consistent full text and advanced search capabilities. The new WDN website will also include additional historic titles and more recent decades only available through the State Library.

More than 50,000 pages will be added in 2017 from several newspapers, including:
• The Eatonville Dispatch (1961-2010)
• Anacortes American (1905-22)
• Dat Moi (Vietnamese/English) (1975-86)
• Washington Hellenic Review (Greek/English) (1924-34)

All newspapers dated pre-1923 are considered public domain and are an excellent primary source for teachers, students, genealogists, and researchers, said Shawn Schollmeyer, the State Library’s digital newspapers coordinator.

“Our new collection will venture beyond the public domain content and with the gracious consent of each newspaper’s publisher, we are able to upload more recent pages for non-commercial use only,” Schollmeyer said.

Support for the digital newspapers program is provided in part through the Library and Services Technology Act enacted by Congress.

“If anyone would like to see our digital newspaper program grow, they can make a donation through Legacy Washington,” Schollmeyer added.

For questions about the Washington Digital Newspapers website, e-mail Schollmeyer at [email protected].

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