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Toronto Research Tip: Newspapers

Newspapers are a favourite resource for family historians. Researchers can find invaluable leads in birth, marriage and death notices, social columns, reports on crime and court proceedings, and business advertisements.

And increasingly, newspapers are being digitized and made available online. Digital versions of historical issues of two major Toronto dailies, the Toronto Star and the Globe and Mail, can be accessed free of charge through the public library system and various academic institutions. But don’t overlook the smaller papers—you’ll find unexpected treasures in them too.

Ontario Community Newspapers, hosted by OurDigitalWorld, and part of the OurOntario.ca portal, is a collection of free newspaper resources: indexes, clippings and full digitized issues. You’ll find an excellent set of papers from the Toronto neighbourhood of Weston, digitized in cooperation with the Weston Historical Society, including the Times & Guide, with issues back to 1900, and the Weston Times, with issues back to 1890.

Look for papers from surrounding municipalities too, as they often picked up Toronto news. Other contributors to Ontario Community Newspapers include the Newmarket Public Library, the Whitchurch-Stouffville Public Library and the Clarington Public Library.

For more on Toronto-area newspapers and how to find them, check out our Newspapers page.

Newspaper clipping with drawing of new school

Article from the Weston Times, 6 December 1894, p. 2. Weston Historical Society Digital Newspaper Collections, online at news.ourontario.ca

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Toronto Branch Meetings

Sep
23
Mon
7:30 pm The Spanish Flu
The Spanish Flu
Sep 23 @ 7:30 pm – 9:30 pm
The Spanish Flu @ Lansing United Church | Toronto | Ontario | Canada
THE SPANISH FLU, TORONTO’S – CANADA’S FORGOTTEN PANDEMIC Speaker: Mike Clare The story of the Spanish Flu epidemic in Canada and Toronto is a forgotten one. Why? It has been called the most documented epidemic[...]

Courses starting & Workshops

Sep
24
Tue
6:30 pm Genealogy Resources in TPL’s Cat...
Genealogy Resources in TPL’s Cat...
Sep 24 @ 6:30 pm – 7:30 pm
Genealogy Resources in TPL's Catalogue @ Toronto Reference Library, Learning Centre 1 | Toronto | Ontario | Canada
TUESDAY, September 24 Co-sponsored with the Humanities and Social Sciences Department at the Toronto Reference Library The Toronto Reference Library contains many excellent genealogy resources. This hands-on class will demonstrate how to use the Toronto[...]
Sep
26
Thu
4:00 pm Hands-On Criminal Justice Records
Hands-On Criminal Justice Records
Sep 26 @ 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm
Hands-On Criminal Justice Records @ Archives of Ontario | Toronto | Ontario | Canada
Hands-On Criminal Justice Records of 19th Century Ontario Family historians are always seeking records that will help us tell the story of our ancestors’ lives. We want more than just names, dates and places. But[...]
Oct
9
Wed
6:15 pm Library & Archives Canada: A Gol...
Library & Archives Canada: A Gol...
Oct 9 @ 6:15 pm – 8:15 pm
Library & Archives Canada: A Goldmine @ Toronto Reference Library
A GOLDMINE for FAMILY RESEARCHERS: LIBRARY & ARCHIVES CANADA Wednesdays, October 9, 16 and 23 (3 week course) Co-sponsored with the Humanities and Social Sciences Department at the Toronto Reference Library. Registration is required. Registration[...]
Oct
18
Fri
2:00 pm Try Your Hand at Genetic Genealogy
Try Your Hand at Genetic Genealogy
Oct 18 @ 2:00 pm – 4:00 pm
Try Your Hand at Genetic Genealogy @ Lansing United Church | Toronto | Ontario | Canada
Intensive Hands-on Session:  Try Your Hand at Genetic Genealogy with Diahan Southard Working in pairs or small groups you will get a chance to take a DNA case step-by-step to learn how to explore your[...]
Oct
19
Sat
8:30 am Grow & Organize Your DNA Network
Grow & Organize Your DNA Network
Oct 19 @ 8:30 am – 4:30 pm
Grow & Organize Your DNA Network @ Lansing United Church | Toronto | Ontario | Canada
Workshop: Grow & Organize Your DNA Network with Diahan Southard – Your DNA Guide Join us for a full day with Diahan Southard “Your DNA Guide” the internationally known speaker who can help you organize[...]

Other Events

Aug
7
Wed
7:30 pm Toronto History Lecture
Toronto History Lecture
Aug 7 @ 7:30 pm
THE 2019 TORONTO HISTORY LECTURE Kicking the Cultural Traces: James McCarroll in Pre-Confederation Toronto Speaker: Michael Peterman The lecture is free, but registration is required. Click here for more information and to reserve your space[...]

Did you know?

That Toronto Branch OGS has more than 600 members? That members get a discount on publications, and course and workshop registration fees?