Keys Citizen Donates Its Archive To Florida Keys History Center

The Keys Citizen donated large, bound volumes of its Key West Citizen and Florida Keys Keynoter archive to the Monroe County Public Library’s Florida Keys History Center (FKHC). The original newspapers date back to the 1920s. Due to downsizing, the Citizen could no longer store the papers. This was a result of a longstanding partnership between the Citizen and the library system to acquire these documents.

On Thursday, Monroe County Facilities Maintenance safely transported the collection to an offsite, climate-controlled facility until room can be made at the Key West library.

“This is a bedrock collection,” said Dr. Corey Malcom, Lead Historian for the FKHC. “It is the single richest source concerning modern Keys history there is.”  

Four people load a rack of bound volumes onto a truck.

The FKHC has a comprehensive index of the newspaper and has the archives scanned onto microfilm, which will remain the primary means of accessing the back issues of the newspapers. But microfilm is nowhere near as good, especially for photographs. Once information is pinpointed in the microfilm, the original paper can be used for the best available copy.  

“We are thrilled to add these documents to the Monroe County archive. People will be using them to understand Keys history for generations to come,” Malcom said. 


Top: A crew from Monroe County Facilities Maintenance moves the bound volumes of the Citizen to secure, climate-controlled storage. Photo by Dr. Corey Malcom.

Gallery, all from the Monroe County Public Library, Florida Keys History Center:

  1. Photograph of the Key West Citizen June 12, 1908, the oldest known copy.
  2. Key West Citizen Editor Margaret Foresman with a front page of the Citizen that won the prize from Florida Press Association on May 9, 1957. Photo by Don Pinder.
  3. Printing Press Room of the Key West Citizen circa 1964. Photo by Don Pinder.
  4. Key West Citizen press room C 1964. Photo by Don Pinder.
  5. The Key West Citizen newspaper office on Greene Street circa 1960. Wright Langley Collection.


Florida History