The Daily Collegian and its predecessors serve as an important source for documenting student life at the Pennsylvania State University . Newspapers, and specifically, student-run newspapers, such as the Daily Collegian, often document university life better than any other source-through their pictures, their editorials, and their reports on student activities and interests.
The Daily Collegian originally started as The Freelance in 1887 and then changed names over time:
At this time we have digitized The Daily Collegian for years 1887 to 2010.
- Free Lance (monthly) - April 1887 to April 1904
- State Collegian (weekly) - September 28, 1904 to June 10, 1911
- Penn State Collegian (weekly) - September 28, 1911 to August 2, 1940 (also had Summer Collegian issues for some dates during this time period)
- The Daily Collegian (daily) - September 5, 1940 to present
The News and Microforms and The Special Collections Libraries receive many questions and queries about these newspapers and their content. Until this project, researchers seeking to use these newspapers were largely limited to a microfilm collection located in The News and Microforms Library due to the very fragile condition of the bound volumes that are housed and preserved by The Special Collections Library.
In the past, to find articles by subject, researchers had to use a card file started in the 1930's that is located in The Special Collections Library. This card file contains handwritten cards identifying articles about people and events deemed important at the time, but often omitted articles that researchers today might find interesting or important.
Today, the Historical Digital Collegian provides access to all words, photographs, and advertisements as well as an exact page image of the newspaper page containing the article. For those readers who prefer to see the newspaper intact, each issue can be browsed page-by-page. Thus, the Historical Digital Collegian allows researchers greater flexibility in locating articles of interest and in allowing greater access for those researchers not able to visit The University Libraries.
The Historical Digital Collegian database was created from the microfilm copy. Using OCLC Olive software, the microfilm digitization and distillation of the microfilm was done by OCLC's Preservation Service Center (Bethlehem , PA). The result is a database of page images that can be browsed and searched.
Funding was provided by the state through legislation requiring the four statewide Library Resource Centers to create online resources for the citizens of Pennsylvania. The project was coordinated by the University Libraries' Preservation Department under the leadership of Sue Kellerman, The Judith O. Sieg Chair for Preservation, in consultation with William L. Joyce, Dorothy Foehr Huck Chair & Head, Special Collections Library, and Debora Cheney, Foster Communications Librarian & Head, News and Microforms and Social Sciences Libraries.
We are very pleased to provide access to this important record of The Pennsylvania State University's history. If you have questions about the Historical Digital Collegian Project, please contact the News Librarians.
IFLA Newspapers/Genealogy and Local History Pre-Conference Satellite Meeting
The Campus Newspaper—From Newspaper to Digital Archive--the Libraries’ Role and Responsibilities
Foster Communications Librarian
309D Paterno Library
University Park, PA 16802
Jackie R. Esposito, University Archivist
Special Collections Library
122 Paterno Library
University Park, PA 16802-1808
814-863-3791 or 814-865-1793
Sue Kellerman, Judith O. Sieg Chair for Preservation
402 Pattee Library
University Park , PA 16802-1804