News from the Reference Desk Category: History

Historical Newspapers

Canvass_for_Funds Newspaper_ArticleSomething you might wonder about when staying safe inside is how people rose to meet other challenges in history. A good way to find out is through historical newspapers. In these you will be able to find headlines, articles, pictures, opinions and the even the weather report at that time. Here are Mount Prospect Public Library’s top three historical newspaper sources:

1. Newspapers.com Library Edition. This is a sibling database of Ancestry.com Library Edition. It has millions of pages from sixteen thousand newspapers extending back to the 17th Century.

2. Newspaper Archive contains hundreds of Illinois papers, including the archives of The Daily Herald. If you browse papers by cities, the full run is found under Arlington Heights.  Now available to home users!

3. The Chicago Tribune through the ProQuest Historical Newspapers. Here you can read every issue from 1849 to 1996. It is the easiest to search.

Getting History Right: Mayflower’s 400th and Your Own Family Story

Mayflower in Plymouth Harbor paintingThanksgiving Day, 2019 marks the start of the 400th annual celebration of the landing of the Mayflower ship at Plymouth, Massachusetts.  The celebration committee is working hard to look beyond the myth of Thanksgiving and colonial experiences to better tell the stories of the women of the Mayflower and the Native American tribes which lived in the area.  You can learn about some of the plans for this commemoration in this recent article from the Boston Globe newspaper.

collection of old family photographsGreat events like the coming of the Mayflower and colonial people’s interactions with Native American tribes are made up of many individual stories of individuals and families.  Those stories can be easily lost if not shared.  A recent article from Good Housekeeping magazine explains the current situation and offers some tips for encouraging young and old family members to start sharing and collecting these stories. Don’t let your family history be left out of the historical record.  Mount Prospect Public Library has a strong collection of print and online sources that can help individuals research and document their family histories.  Come to the Research Services desk or contact genealogy librarian Anne Shaughnessy for more information.  Let’s get history right.

Mount Prospect in the News

Events in Mount Prospect over the past 100 years have been documented by a few local newspapers; occasionally the Chicago Tribune would make brief mentions of the village, and the Daily Herald has been a source of Mount Prospect news since 1901.

Two other newspapers were focused just on Mount Prospect. Both papers document life in Mount Prospect during challenging times in history:


From 1932-1942 the Mount Prospect Review covered local events during the Great Depression and early World War II years.
The Prospect Day header
From April 1966 to June 1970 The Prospect Day covered events during a time of great growth and change in Mount Prospect. Digital copies of these newspapers are searchable on the MPPL website.

The Mount Prospect Review and the historical Daily Herald can be searched through the web resource Newspaper Archive. This source is only available in the Library. The Prospect Day was recently digitized and is available on the MPPL website on this page. The Historical Chicago Tribune, Newspaper Archive and Prospect Day can also be accessed by going to the newspapers section of the Web Resources page of the MPPL website.

If you have questions about how to use these resources, please ask for assistance at the Research Services Desk, call the desk at 847-253-5675 or chat online with a librarian.

Origins of Winter Holiday Celebrations

Mistletoe, presents, candlelight–all of these and more are part of winter holidays. The origins of the traditions carried out this time of year are both ancient and modern. The editors of JSTOR an online resource of academic articles have collected a variety of articles which address aspects of the winter holiday season (as well as other holidays). You will learn more about Santa Claus, mistletoe, the lights of Hanukkah, poinsettias,  the winter solstice and other treasured aspects of this time of year.  Take time during this busy season to immerse yourself in the lore of the winter holidays. May this experience bring you understanding and a greater appreciation of the season.

Veterans Day, 2018

November 11, 2018 marks the 100th anniversary of the armistice which ended World War I–The Great War.  Ceremonies commemorating this event have been taking place across the United States and in Europe. The Great War impacted nearly every community in the United States but has often been considered the “Forgotten War.”  Today there are resources online which document many of the individual stories of the war.  Links to the stories of Illinois families can be found on this page of the United States World War I Commission website. Mount Prospect was just over a year old on the Armistice Day in 1918, but Mount Prospect’s citizens felt the impact of the war as well.  Relics of that time can be found at the Library’s Illinois Digital Archives page.  Among them are a uniform jacket and a gas mask.  After the war Mount Prospect veterans formed VFW  Post 1337 and the American Legion Post 525.  The names of the women who were charter members of the American Legion Auxiliary of Post 525 may be seen here.  Veterans in both organizations continue to be active in the community today and do much to honor those who served in the past and do so now.  Never forget.