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This resource is freely accessible

ICON (International Coalition on Newspapers) database

ICON is a registry of information on the hard copy, microform, and digitized holdings of US and foreign newspapers held by several major US research libraries. The largest single repository of information about such holdings, ICON currently contains records for over 172,000 newspaper titles, published in 51 US jurisdictions, 9 Canadian provinces, and 159 other nations. The publication dates of these holdings range from 1649 to 2014. At present, ICON lists over 40 million issues of these titles represented in the print and microform newspaper holdings of CRL and several major US research libraries, the extensive print newspaper holdings of the American Antiquarian Society, and digitized newspapers in two databases considered by CRL to be trustworthy and persistent: LC’s Chronicling America database and the Readex World Newspaper Archive.

For each newspaper title, the ICON database displays:

  • Publishing history of the title, on an issue-by-issue basis, which is generated using an algorithm developed by CRL from sampling, extrapolation, and hands-on data generated as a by-product of the digitization process, microfilming process, and/or intensive shelf-reading.
  • Names and characteristics of repositories/databases holding the title, and any or all of the formats in which the title is held.
  • Holdings of the accredited repositories in microform and paper down to the issue level, obtained through CRL harvesting or publisher direct submission. CRL harvests this information from the Chronicling America website using an API, and obtains direct submission from Readex and the American Antiquarian Society.
  • The contents of the major “trustworthy” databases  at the issue level, obtained through direct submission from the publisher and through CRL harvesting.


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December 4, 2014


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freely accessible database Freely accessible database, available to anyone without restriction
mobile interface Mobile interface available, see description for link.
Screencast tutorial available Screencast tutorial available, icon linked to list.
Contents in summon Contents of this database are in Summon.
get VText Resource provides Get VText links to access full text.
gold open access - publishing Resource provides open access publishing opportunities and open access publications.
get VText Resource provides self archiving opportunities and open access documents.


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