Extra, Extra Read All About It!!!
Many eBay sellers rely on listing sites such as Abe and Alibris for their descriptions and rarely find a close match for their material. With no text and prices to copy they tend to offer minimal descriptions and generally low prices. Hence the potential bargains. On the other hand if you are going to be a bidder you need to do your homework.
Here are some basic resources:
Brigham, Clarence S. History and Bibliography of American Newspapers: 1690 : 1820. 2 vols. First printed in 1947.
Mott, Frank Luther. American Journalism: A History of Newspapers in the United States through 250 Years. First published in 1941, revised and reprinted several times and extended to...260 Years.
Gregory, Winifred. An alphabetical index to American newspapers 1821 -1836. A Union List. First published in 1937.
For those who are more interested in early newspapers in the American west I recommend David Dary's Red Blood & Red Ink, an account of newspaper publishing in the early days of western expansion and settlement.. If you are leaning toward becoming an outright newspaper collector or adding newspapers to the mix of material you acquire in pursuit of your personal focus Dr. Dary's book gives life to many of the names found just under the mastheads: the printers and publishers. It's in print.
He's also the author of seven other books on the west: The Buffalo Book, True Tales of the Old-Time Plains, Cowboy Culture, True Tales of Old-Time Kansas, More True Tales of Old-Time Kansas, Entrepreneurs of the Old West, and Seeking Pleasure in the Old West.
Here are some additional sources Dr. Dary suggests:
Frederic Hudson: JOURNALISM IN THE UNITED STATES FROM 1690 TO 1873. New York: Harper & Brothers, 1973. This 789 page work is the earliest comprehensive history of American journalism. It spans 1690 to 1872 and includes some information on journalism west of the Mississippi. It was reprinted in 1968.
Willard Grosvenor Bleyer: MAIN CURRENTS IN THE HISTORY OF AMERICAN JOURNALISM. Boston: Houghton Mifflin Co., 1927. This work includes material on early English journalism, journalism in the colonies from 1750 to 1783, the political press in America from 1800-1833, and key American journalists including James Gordon Bennett, Horace Greeley, Henry J. Raymond, Samuel Bowles, Edwin Lawrence Godkin, Charles A. Dana, William Rockhill Nelson, Joseph Pulitzer and William Randolph Hearst. Includes a list of readings plus index. 464 pages.