19th century newspapers

Radical newspapers

The scale of the newspaper publishing industry from the early 19th century onwards was enormous, with many cities and towns publishing several newspapers simultaneously, often aimed at distinct audiences depending on their social status and political ties.

The 19th century newspapers in the Rare Radical and Labour Periodicals of Great Britain collection in the British Politics and Society archive offer scholars and students an in-depth view of working-class history during the 19th century  and the radical tradition in Britain. This collection comprises more than 100 titles totalling 66,000 pages: many of the titles are rare and or difficult to obtain, such as The Anarchist Communist and Revolutionary. In what amounts to a mission statement the paper states  "In a word we reject all legislation, all authority, and all privileged, licensed, official, and legal influence...Such is the sense in which we are really Anarchists." Together these newspapers in the collection represent the sweep of Chartist, trade unionist, communist, social democrat and anarchist opinion in an era that witnessed the rise of social movements.

Other nineteenth century newspapers in the collection include:

  • The English Chartist Circular
  • The Freethinker's Magazine and Review of Theology, Politics, and Literature
  • Out of Work
  • The Patriot
  • A Penny Paper for the People
  • The Political Investigator
  • The Political Unionist
  • The Promethean
  • The Prophet
  • The Radical Reformer
  • The Radical Register, and Liberal GazetteThe Red Rag
  • The Republican: A Monthly Advocate and Record of Republican and Democratic Principles and Movements
  • The Revolutionary Review
  • Rich and Poor
  • The Socialist

International newspapers and periodicals

NCCO provides researchers with a wealth of 19th century newspaper and periodical content beyond the United Kingdom. The Missionary and Socio-Economic Journals collection in the Asia and the West  archive helps researchers chronicle the growth of the missionary movement and the evangelical goal to  “Christianise and civilise” non-Europeans. These Asia-related missionary periodicals were designed to inform readers of their missionary activities abroad and to recruit new members.

The socio-economic journals covered a number of topics: scientific discoveries; indigenous literature; travel narratives; reports on agricultural products eg. tea and tobacco; religious beliefs and mythology;  fauna and flora; maps; ethnic groups; and politics and war. Of particular interest to scholars, is the inclusion in the periodicals of  personal narratives of lesser known writers. Among its journals are The Journal of the Ceylon Branch of the Royal Asiatic Society which published the society's “oriental” research in Sri Lanka, the monthly journal published in the Philippines The Far-Eastern Review and Mélanges Asiatiques, the annual periodical published in St Petersburg, Russia.