Are you interested in seeing what your Northern ancestors may have read during the Civil War? If so, you are in for a treat: you can see nearly every issue of Harper's Weekly published between 1861 and 1865 at The Civil War.
What a boon for those of us with ancestors from that time period. And let's face it: we all had ancestors alive during the 1860s or we wouldn't be here! Not all ancestors were directly involved with the war but most people were effected by the War in one way or another.
The Civil War website states, "We Believe that the most exciting way to study the Civil War, is to watch the war unfold on the pages of Original Harper's Weekly Newspapers. Harper's Weekly was the most popular newspaper during the Civil War, and it featured stunning illustrations, and in depth stories on all the important people and events of the war. Below, for your research and enjoyment, we present this work in progress. Presently 1861 through 1864 are completed, and the 1865 issues through May are complete."
The front page of each issue has either one large drawing or several smaller ones. There are 8 or more pages per issue with more illustrations inside, sometimes full-page.
The newspaper covers events pertaining to the war, government news, current events in Washington, biographies of important (and not so important) people, news of social events, an occasional cartoon, and ads.
I found the website easy to navigate. Thumbnails of the issues are in columns under the years. Click on the issue you'd like to view and you will be taken to a screen that gives a brief overview of the contents of that issue with thumbnails of each page. Scroll down to see the first page or click on one of the other pages to view it.
I would show you a screenshot of a page but honestly, they are so large I have to scroll to see the whole page. You can look at The Capital Dome to see what I mean. Isn't it exquisite?!
I hope you find Harper's Weekly interesting and helpful to your research.
There's more to the website than Harper's Weekly but I plan to do a review of some of it's other content another time.