Since 2008, the University of Hawaii at Manoa (UHM) Library has digitized over 200,000 pages of historical English language newspapers in Hawaii published between 1836-1922. This is being done under the National Endowment for Humanities (NEH) and the Library of Congress (LC) grant funding. Starting in its second two-year grant cycle, the Hawaii Digital Newspaper Project (HDNP) focuses more on bringing the news to the people through digital and in-person outreach activities that foster community research on genealogy or local history. By adding value to the digitized content using social media (i.e. Flickr albums and Facebook/Twitter cross-postings) and integrating it with a library-wide outreach, the project is exposed to audiences who might not have been aware of the resources previously. These initiatives were further validated by NEH through their encouragement to other grantees to follow suit with these ideas. In addition, NDNP/Chronicling America’s content has been presented in college classes, informing users about a valuable primary resource useful for research. Meanwhile, outreach efforts outside UHM have also been done and more plans are afoot. Past events include talks at public libraries, high schools, conferences, and national parks. This is especially useful for non-UH groups and residents on islands other than Oahu, who can utilize the full-text-search-capable, primary-resource database for research.

In April 2013, the first author moved to the Vermont Digital Newspaper Project (VTDNP) as Project Librarian for its second grant cycle. Though Vermont and Hawaii are both relatively small states, they have different (and some similar) approaches in outreach and raising awareness about Chronicling America. The latter part of this paper will explore how VTDNP plans to execute its outreach.

This paper attempts to illustrate different approaches taken by HDNP and VTDNP, two relatively smaller projects under NDNP, in spreading the word and raising public awareness about Chronicling America. What’s the point of a multimillion-dollar project to provide free online access to historic newspapers if nobody knows about it?



Document Type


Publication Date


Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License.

Rights Information

Copyright © 2013 by Erenst Anip and Jodie Mattos. This work is made available under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.