I am a frequent user of the Google News Archive, which allows searching of historical newspapers back to the 1800s. In December, the archive disappeared as a search option. A new help page appeared providing alternative instructions for searching the archive, but even using those instructions, nothing can be searched older than 1970.

According to a post at a Google product forum, archive is getting a “facelift.” The post from a Google community manager said:

We are performing a much needed facelift on our News Archive search function as we swap out an old system for an improved one. We are focusing engineering resources on building this new system, and as a result, for the next several months users will only be able to access archived stories through Google Search (google.com), as explained in our Help Center article.

As I said, that Help Center article is no help for pre-1970 stories and the post says nothing about whether these archives will return.

I came across one newspaper site that used Google for searching its own archives that now displays this message:

Google News Archives service has been discontinued by Google.

I can’t find a clear answer anywhere. If anyone knows the fate of the Google News Archives, please let me know.

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  • HL

    What a shame if it’s down for good. Great resource.

  • Apaprently you can still use the system, but it’s not as easy to navigate as previously. Go to http://news.google.com/news/advanced_news_search?as_drrb=a
    and search using the desired dates “between” the opening year and closing year of your search; see also http://news.google.com/newspapers

  • TheBigOne

    Google please quit focusing so much on robots and phones and go back to being a quality search engine which newspaper archives are a part of!

  • TheBigOne

    This social networking crap Google is so fond of now is ruining the new generation while those of us who do care to research history are getting the shaft.

  • Adam

    It’s mid-May and it’s still not back. Any updates?

  • Kyle Hill

    Google never finishes anything. Now they have broken Pixel books whatever that is. Google is a bunch of people who really don’t know why they are doing something but just do what they are told. All these monolithic corporations have the attitude of EA Games and sadly this bone head generation supports it. I don’t know if it’s the spray in the skies and/or fluoride in our water supply keeping people pacified. But they are not any smarter then Bokoblins in Zelda Breath of the Wild with the ? or ! marks over their heads.

    Right now those who notice are at the ? stage when they reach the ! that’s when you have riots on freeways blocking traffic then have mom and pop businesses getting windows smashed even though they have nothing to do with their issue and cars being overturned with driver’s dragged out in extreme cases. You don’t want to see our generation with the ! mark over their heads.