Library Acquires Access to a New Resource for Historical Research

The Cheng Library acquires access to the historical periodicals collection of the American Antiquarian Society.

The Cheng Library recently acquired access to the historical periodicals collection of the American Antiquarian Society, a major research library of pre-twentieth century American history and culture.  Founded in 1812 by Revolutionary War patriot and printer Isaiah Thomas, the American Antiquarian Society is both a learned society and a major independent research library. 

The original periodicals have been digitized from the extensive collections of the American Antiquarian Society, and the publication dates of the titles in this collection range from 1684-1876.  The periodicals cover a wide range of subjects and provide access to unique materials for research into American history and culture prior to the twentieth century. 

The collection represents the largest and most accessible compilation of books, pamphlets, broadsides, newspapers, periodicals, music, and graphic arts material printed through 1876 in what is now the United States.  Also included are manuscripts and a substantial collection of secondary texts, bibliographies, and digital resources and reference works related to all aspects of American history and culture before the twentieth century. 

This collection provides full-text access to more than 7,500 historic periodicals that have been digitized from the extensive holdings of the Society.  The articles are formatted as scanned page images of the original periodicals.  The database supports the annotation of individual documents with a personal account, and the export of documents to PDF format

The American Antiquarian Society Historical Periodicals Collection can be accessed via the Cheng Library’s website.  For additional information about this unique historical collection, please contact Richard Kearney, Electronic Resources Librarian, by email at

February 12, 2018