21 May 10
British Library to digitise 40m of its newspaper pages
The British Library has announced a 10-year project to make 40m pages from its newspaper archive available online.
The record of more than 300 years of journalism, including coverage of the Crimean and Boer Wars, will be put on the web by the publisher BrightSolid. The move will spare historians having to search the current hard copy and microfilm collection. The digital material will be made free to users at the main library site at St Pancras, north London. A charge will be levied for searches conducted from outside the library. The British Library's archive contains about 750m newspaper pages, including 52,000 local, regional, national and international titles. Over 10 years the project will give internet users their first chance to search stories and articles on international events such as the Crimean and Boer wars and the Suffragette movement. Pages written during the census years between 1841 and 1911 will also be made available online. BrightSolid said it aims to complete the digitisation of more than 4m pages within the first two years of the project.