The microfilm printer-scanner is now ready for use at the genealogy research center at the Quitman Public Library. Microfilm (mainly census and the Wood County Democrat back issues) can be checked out from the library main desk for in-library use. Inter-library loan is possible for microfilm from other sources.
Three new pages have been posted with indexes of microfilm and cd-rom disks in the library for research. Access the pages by clicking on the Libraries tab at the top of the home page at the WCGS Bulletin (or see above). They include Wood County Democrat back issues on microfilm, U. S. Federal censuses for Wood County and a few other counties, and cd-rom disks of research data. All these resources are for in-library use and require use of either a microfilm reader or computer which are available at the library.
Some years of the Wood County Democrat of Quitman (1950 to 1987 plus 1993 and 2005) are searchable online. The most complete decade is 1951-60. Only a few years/issues of the other decades are made available. Some searches require you to be a paid subscriber of a web service, and some are free.
Google News Archives (http://news.google.com/archivesearch) has a free search of the 1951 to 1960 Democrat as well as the year of 2005. The easiest way to search Google’s News Archive contents is to go to the Small Town Papers site (http://www.smalltownpapers.com/newspapers/newspaper_pages.php?id=413). In the search box near the top of the page, type a surname, city name or other word which might have appeared in the newspapers. For example: typing the word funeral, turned up 603 results most of which were obituaries/funeral notices. While on that page, by clicking and dragging you can read other news items and on additional pages of that issue of the newspaper. Typing funeral and a year ( funeral 1956) yielded funeral notices of papers of that year.
Footnote.com (http://footnote.com) has the Democrat for searching and the digital images for the years 1951-60, 1979, 1984, 1986, 1993, and 2005. A one-year membership is $79.95 paid in full at the time you subscribe, or you can pay $11.95 monthly. The yearly option is better if you will be keeping the service for a whole year. There is also a 7-day free trial. You have to give a credit card number, and if you don’t cancel before the seven days is up, your credit card will automatically be charged for a one-year membership. There is a convenient link on your account page to notify them to cancel before your card is charged.
While both Google and Footnote say they get their search data from smalltownpapers.com, if you subscribe to the latter site ($25.00 a year) you only get to access the 2005 Democrat newspapers.
Offline searching is available on the microfilm reader at the Quitman Public Library. Ask for the microfilm at the library desk. Although the microfilm collection at the library has some skipped issues, it starts in 1917.