52 Ancestors: Week 13 – Historical Newspapers in Nova Scotia

Large collections of historical newspapers on line are hard to find in Canada. If you have Nova Scotia ancestors, you\’ll want to check out the collection of digitized historical papers you access through Libraries, Archives, and Museums Nova Scotia.

This collection is a collaboration between LAM NS, Nova Scotia Archives, the Beaton Institute (Cape Breton University), and the Angus L. MacDonald Library (St. Francis Xavier University). The collection spans from 1769 to 2003. Some are in PDF form, while others are not. The PDF versions are keyword searchable.Just press Ctrl and F to show a search bar in the top right.

These collections are by no means complete. Some papers are only 1 or 2 editions, others have several. This website provides direct links to the three partner institutions\’ digital collections. What is really unique about the collections is that there are cultural newspapers for French, Gaelic and Native populations. The papers available are:


  • Nova Scotia Chronicle and Weekly Advertiser – Halifax
  • The Royal American Gazette – Shelburne
  • The Port-Roseway Gazetteer and Shelburne Advertiser
  • The Nova Scotia-Packet and General Advertiser – Shelburne
  • Acadian Recorder – Halifax
  • Liverpool Tanscript
  • The Bee – Pictou
  • The Atlantic Advocate – Haifax
  • The Tiny Tattler -Central Grove, Digby Neck
  • The 4th Estate – Halifax
  • The Nova Scotia Gleaner – Sydney
  • Guysborough Journal 


  • Le Courrier de la Nouvelle-Ecosse – Meteghan River
  • An Solus luil – Guiding Light – Sydney
  • Fear na Ceilidh – The Visitor –  Sydney
  • Mosgladh – Awakening – Sydney
  • Teachdaire nan Gaidheal – Then Messengers of the Gaels – Sydney
  • Am Braighe – Higher Ground – Mabou
  • An Cuairtear Og Gaelach – The Gaelic Tourist – Antigonish
  • Billa Na Queg – A New Day – Eskasoni
  • Micmac News – Membertou
The digital images of the publications are a treat. They are very clear and crisp. When you consider just how old some of these editions are, it\’s amazing. Take a look at this one from the Nova Scotia Gleaner. Even though the original is not in pristine condition, you\’ll have no trouble reading it.
Here\’s one from the Atlantic Advocate discussing prohibition:
Please take note of a few things though:
  • The newspapers on the Nova Scotia Archives site cannot be downloaded to your computer. 
  • I had trouble accessing the papers from the Angus L. MacDonald Library. The server kept timing out on me. I did find a work around though. Use this link to access their digital collections. While you\’re at it, take a look at the other digitized material they have. It looks pretty interesting.

2 thoughts on “52 Ancestors: Week 13 – Historical Newspapers in Nova Scotia

  1. Click on your Angus MacDonald Library link you you get \”Page not found. Página no encontrada. Page introuvable. Pagina niet gevonden. Seite nicht gefunden. Página não encontrada.\”


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