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The Local Studies Collection of Local Newspapers

Local newspaperNewspapers from the East Midlands area have a long and distinguished history. The Derby Mercury, which ran from 1732 to 1933, was one of the earliest provincial newspapers and, with other titles, has an important role in the history of the 18th and 19th centuries.

Local newspapers cover nationally important events, often in greater detail than the national press. For example, if a new railway line was opened and ran through the town, the local newspapers would have covered the opening thoroughly.

Day-to-day events of the time are also recorded, such as floods, accidents, sporting occasions, celebrations, entertainments and the opening of public buildings, bridges and parks

Advertisements and public notices will also be found which give a wealth of information about the society, conditions and the people of the time. Businesses advertise their services, dates are given for auctions to be held and various kinds of organisations use local papers to issue statements of intent. In earlier times advertisements for domestic servants for the wealthier classes would be seen, along with weddings and obituaries.

Also every local paper prints its readers’ views about local events and issues of concern to them at the time.

Local newspapers are a useful source for all kinds of historical projects from family trees to village, church, club and sporting histories. Searching for information, however, can often be time-consuming as few newspapers have been indexed.

For full details of what we hold, and locations of local newspapers across the region, please check the East Midlands Newsplan website - http://newsplan.liem.org.uk

Here is a list of the major items available at the Derby Local Studies Library:

Newspapers kept by the Local Studies Library


Date Span



Ashbourne News Telegraph

1892 to date lacking 1897

To 1963


Derby Evening Telegraph

July 1879 to present



Derby Express

1885 to January 1932 (lacking July - September 1924)



Derby Mercury

March 1732 to May 1929


1840 - 1873

Derby & Chesterfield Reporter

1823 to March 1930


1823 - 1827

Derby Trader formerly Herald & Post

December 1966 to present

Microfilmed to 1987

1966 - 1994

Derbyshire Advertiser

1846 to 24 September 1976 (lacking 1889 & 1890)


Mid 1940s to 1976

There are also editions of short-lived and free newspapers available.

Most of the newspapers held at Derby Local Studies Library are available on microfilm. We advise you to reserve a microfilm reader before visiting the library as the machines are always in great demand. There are also machines available for copying from microfilm and microfiche.

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