The Alternative Press Collection in the Department of Special Collections contains nearly 300 titles, mostly non-mainstream newspapers in their original form, from the late 1960s to the latter 1970s. Many of the newspapers are from California, but there also are numerous examples from other parts of the U.S. and a few issues from countries such as Great Britain and the Netherlands.
The topics covered in the Alternative Press Collection are wide-ranging and include extensive discussion of the Vietnam war, free speech, the role of government vs individual rights, women’s rights and gay and lesbian issues, religion in contemporary society, environmental issues, communal living and counter cultural expression in the arts and literature.
In many cases the items in the Alternative Press Collection are single issues or short runs of newspapers but in some instances, as with the LA Free Press or the Berkeley Barb there are much longer runs spanning several years. All materials are available for research in the Special Collections Reading Room. A guide describing the collection more fully is available here on the Online Archive of California (OAC) or in the Special Collections Reading Room.