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Genealogy and Family History

Explore your roots at VPL and beyond: resources and services for genealogists


The Vancouver Public Library collection includes historical newspapers (primarily for British Columbia). The Library also subscribes to electronic databases which provide historical access to key British and American newspapers.

If a newspaper is currently being published both the current and historical issues of the paper will be located on level 5. If it is a British Columbia paper that is no longer being published, historical issues will be in Special Collections (Level 7).

Newspaper Resources


The following books may be helpful if you are trying to determine which newspaper(s) were published in a specific time and place. To find other bibliographies or union lists of newspapers, ask the information staff at the Central Library for assistance. The Newspapers on Microfilm and Newspapers on the Internet tabs may also be useful.

Union Catalogue of British Columbia Newspapers, 3 vol.
Komorous, Hana, comp.
Ref. 071.1X K81u

Union List of Canadian Newspapers
National Library of Canada
Ref. MICROFICHE 071.1X C212ua


Vancouver Public Library (Central Library) has a large collection of both historical and recent newspapers. The focus of the historical collection is on British Columbian and Canadian newspapers. We also collect some international papers.

Beyond VPL
Additional collections of newspapers on microfilm are available both locally and elsewhere. In some cases, films are available via interlibrary loan.

British Columbia Newspapers on Microfilm (British Columbia Archives)
The British Columbia Archives is located in Victoria. Films are not available via interlibrary loan, but the collection is open to the public. Holdings include a number of non-B.C. newspapers.

Newspapers and News Sources (University of British Columbia Library)
Open to the public.

Newspapers at Library and Archives Canada
The Library and Archives of Canada has over 200,000 reels of Canadian newspapers on microfilm. Films may be borrowed through interlibrary loan.

Library of Congress – Newspapers
This page includes a listing of historical newspapers on microfilm available at the Library of Congress. Most films can be borrowed through interlibrary loan. Charges may apply.

British Library Newspapers Collections
Copy service available.


Many newspapers have their own websites though content is often limited to current and recent editions. A number of old newspapers have been digitized for the Internet. Some are free; others are available by subscription only.

More newspaper resources are listed below in Websites of Interest.

Websites of Interest