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World War II - Historical American Newspapers: Home

World War II Begins

Workshop Goals

In this workshop, you will learn how to search for articles in historical American newspapers during World War II. You will find a tremendous amount of information from a wide variety of perspectives.  We want you to learn, not only how to search for relevant sources, but to evaluate the article and the publication, and to compare perspectives reported in American newspapers.

As you explore the articles on the invasion of Poland, the declaration of war on September 3, 1939, and the events which unfolded during the rest of September that year, think critically about the intended audience of the newspaper and the perspective the publication takes on the topic for their readers.  Read the article, but also examine the article in the context of the other news items on the same page. 

Other questions to consider:

  • Is the article on the first page of the publication?
  • Is it "above the fold?" 
  • Is there a byline?  If so, what other topics has the reporter written about?
  • How frequently is the newspaper published, and how might that impact the news presented?

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