I spent most of the morning down at Speedy Print in Bozeman, which has kindly allowed us to use their large-format scanner to scan in old newspaper pages.
We are, of course, doing this because 2011 is the newspaper’s centennial, and we are in a historical preservation kind of mood around the Chronicle. Strictly speaking, we don’t have a lot in the way of archives here at the building. If it was printed before about 1983, you should say a prayer before going looking for it.
True, most of the old Chronicle’s are available on microfilm at either the Bozeman Public Library or the Renne Library at MSU, but many of the old papers on the film are unreadable. That won’t do, especially since we are looking to reprint some of them and make more of them available to the public online.
Hence, the hours and hours of scanning the old pages we have managed to get our hands on.
Before you ask, no, this is not an archival digitization project. We are scanning pages piecemeal, as they come to us. Either that, or we are aiming for major front pages throughout the past 100 years, like the end of World War II and the assassination of Kennedy. The full text of these articles will not be available online (at least, I haven’t made plans for that yet…), but we are putting the pages in a few places so that you can peruse them.
First, you’ll be able to see a few of them reprinted in the paper. These are advertising inserts in the paper, and the old pages — so much wider than the paper we print on now — are shrunken to fit on the modern page. Readability suffers, for pure keepsake value, look to the print edition.
Second, we are putting historical front pages on our website as images. You can find them on our Centennial page.
Third, I am uploading them to Scribd, that bastion of PDFs online. They are collected under our username, bozemandailychronicle in a special centennial collection. You can check out the widget below, which will collec the issues as they become available in Scribd.
Edit: Just realized that the headline on this article has had a typo in it since I posted it. Fixed now.