If it happened in or near Lowell, it probably was noted in the Lowell Ledger or its predecessor newspapers. Now, more than 100 years of news archives are online and available to anyone, anywhere, 24/7.
KDL’s Friends of the Englehardt Library received a $6,000 grant from the Lowell Area Community Fund to digitize the Ledger’s 88-reel microfilm collection, which spans from 1870 to December 2012. The collection is available through KDL’s website – www.kdl.org – and through the Lowell Area Historical Museum website – www.lowellmuseum.org.
“It’s going to be such a great tool,” said Pat Allchin, executive director of the Lowell Area Historical Museum. “For even me, to go to the (microfilm) files is very cumbersome. And a lot of people don’t like to come to the museum to do research because of our steep staircase (to the second-floor archives). This makes it so much easier for everyone.”
The microfilm format also made it difficult for people to locate particular names or events unless they know the approximate date the information was originally published. With the new technology, the issues are in a searchable format, making it easier than ever for local genealogists and history enthusiasts to locate information quickly and efficiently.
To help researchers better use and search the new technology, a series of free classes will be offered at the Englehardt branch: the first is scheduled for 6:00 PM on Monday, October 21 (pre-registration is required — call 616-784-2007 to register). The museum also offers time for residents to get assistance with genealogy research from 5:00 to 8:00 PM the second Thursday of each month and during open hours, when staff time permits.
Issues of the Ledger published after 2012 will be added to the online digital collection between six months and one year after publication. The direct link to the digitized Ledger is http://www.kdl.org/reference_resources/go/LowellLedger
Posted by: Morgan J.