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Library Launches Yale Daily News Historical Archive

For release May 6, 2008

New Haven, Conn.--Important periods in the history of Yale will now be more accessible to scholars and students through the Yale University Library’s Yale Daily News Historical Archive.

The Yale Daily News (YDN) is the oldest college daily newspaper in the United States, and has been covering student life at Yale and in New Haven for 130 years. The Library has now digitized key periods from the YDN including January 1878 to June 1879, the first year of the YDN’s publication; the period covering the two World Wars; the era of civil unrest, coeducation, and the Black Panther trials from 1967 to 1970; and the early years of President A. Bartlett Giamatti’s administration from 1978 to 1981. The Library is working with a number of partners to digitize the entire run of the YDN from 1878 to 2000, and content from January 2001 to the present is already available online at the YDN web site.

The YDN is usually published every weekday the University is in session, and many of its editors and contributors have gone on to prominent careers in journalism and public life, including Henry R. Luce, William F. Buckley, Garry Trudeau, Calvin Trillin, Joseph Lieberman, Sargent Shriver, Lan Samantha Chang, Jacob Weisberg, and Samantha Power.

"The Yale Daily News is an essential primary resource for any study of Yale University and its history and culture and a wonderful archive of student life in general," said University Librarian Alice Prochaska. "It is heavily used by researchers from around the country and a digital and indexed version will greatly enhance access and support scholarship."

Readers using the Yale Daily News Historical Archive will be able to find full-page views of the original newspaper, and will have the ability to zoom in on details; conduct word, phrase or name searches across all digitized YDN issues; select articles or photographs on a page; and print or download copies of articles.

Yale professor emeritus Gaddis Smith, who was the chair of the YDN in 1953, commented,"This will be extremely important for everyone interested in Yale since 1878." Smith noted that paper copies of the YDN are rapidly deteriorating and those on microfilm are difficult to use. The digitized newspaper archives will be cross-referenced and indexed, making them far more searchable than previously possible, he noted.

Financial support for this initial phase of the project was provided by the Oldest College Daily Foundation, Yale University Library, and the Class of 1945W. During the Reunion Weekends in May and June, librarians and former YDN editors will demonstrate the Yale Daily News Historical Archive for alumni and visitors in Sterling Memorial Library.

More information, including details of the years and issues covered, as well as information on partners in this exciting project, can be found on the Library’s web site.


About Yale University Library

One of the world’s leading research libraries, Yale University Library is a full partner in teaching, research, and learning at Yale and is visited by scholars from around the world. A distinctive strength is its rich spectrum of resources, including approximately thirteen million volumes and information in all media, ranging from ancient papyri to early printed books to electronic databases. The Library is engaging in numerous projects to expand access to its physical and digital collections. Housed in twenty-two buildings including the Sterling Memorial Library, the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library, and the new Bass Library, it employs a dynamic staff of six hundred who offer innovative and flexible services to library readers. To learn more about Yale University Library and its collections and services, visit www.library.yale.edu.

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