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Microfilm in the Notre Dame Archives

Scope and content of microfilm in the archives, with advice on how to use particularly challenging collections.

NHPRC Microfilm

The Archives has produced microfilm editions of some of its manuscript collections, generally with the help of funding from the National Historical Publications and Research Commission (NHPRC).  These microfilm reels are available for sale and may be found in many libraries across the country:

Orestes A. Brownson Papers (19 reels) 
William T. Sherman Family Papers (15 reels) 
Thomas Ewing Papers (6 reels) 
Diocese of Louisiana and the Floridas (12 reels)

These collections have well developed finding aids to help researchers find documents of interest to them, and two of the collections have been digitized (the Sherman Papers and the Diocese of Louisiana and the Floridas).

Catholic Newspapers on Microfilm

The University of Notre Dame Archives holds microfilm of 382 Catholic newspapers dating from 1811 to 1988. In most cases these are incomplete runs and in many cases we have duplicates of similar microfilm held by the Hesburgh Libraries. Compared to microfilm of manuscript collections, microfilm of newspapers poses few problems for the researcher. Issues generally appear in chronological order and labels on reels indicate the chronological span.

Catholic Serials on Microfilm

Microfilmed periodicals other than newspapers have been gathered in the archives' Serials Collection. These include magazines, scholarly journals, annals, and newsletters, 1834-1974.

Sports Microfilm

Our sports periodicals on microfilm support historical baseball research and report on other sports and recreational activities of their era. We have the rights to sell this microfilm: Nineteenth-Century Sports Newspapers, including the Baseball Players Chronicle (New York), 1867 (June 6 - Dec 25), the American Chronicle of Sports & Pastimes, 1868 (Jan 2 - June 23), the New England Base Ballist (Boston), 1868 (Aug 6 - Dec 31) and the National Chronicle (Boston), 1869 (Jan 6 - Dec 25); the  earliest  issues  of The  Sporting  News (1886-1917); later issues of The Sporting News 1916-1980; and The Sporting Life (1883-1917).

Other Microfilm

We do not often sell copies of our other microfilm collections. Researchers can use our microfilm when they come to Notre Dame, make copies of individual documents, or if they cannot travel to Notre Dame order copies of individual documents by email ( In some cases, if we own the rights to a given reel of microfilm, we might agree to make a microfilm copy of the whole reel. Again, inquire via email.