Old newspapers take a lot of careful reading, which is probably not for everyone. But they are are a great – maybe even the best place to discover local history. Shultz appears regularly in both the Augusta Chronicle and the Edgefield Advertiser with Sheriff’s sales of Hamburg property, reports of Hamburg anniversary celebrations, and  melancholy articles by Shultz condemning his latest injuries (or outlining a new plan to escape them).


You can search Edgefield Advertisers online for one article after another about Shultz, or anyone else you think might show up. The Augusta Chronicle covers Shultz beginning with construction of the Bridge in 1813, and for example had many columns reporting Shultz in his 1827 murder trial.

A digitized paper with online search is huge. These antebellum papers pack their space with small text, headlines are very limited, and only a couple of pages per issue are dated and numbered. I have searched papers over and over to find something I knew was there, but just couldn’t see it. When you do find something interesting, worth keeping, follow my advice – keep a careful note of the name of the paper, the date, page number, column in which the article appeared, and the topic. History is not what you can find – it’s what you can find AGAIN!

Below we have a couple of interesting articles from the Library of Congress web site, which has a great digital collection from the Edgefield Advertiser that you can search and read for free. Unfortunately, this paper only started in 1836.

Edgefield Advertiser 8 March 1838 i5c4: Sale of 160 lots in Hamburg

Edgefield Advertiser 18 Jul 1839 i2c6: Hamburg 18th anniversary celebration

The Augusta Chronicle has been digitized back to 1789, but at home you will have to pay to use it. I think you can still get on it for free at the Augusta Library.


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