One interesting place to search is Chronicling America. The site contains many complete digitized newspapers from 1777 to 1963. Anything prior to 1924 is very likely to be out of copyright so you can use stories or photographs you find.
- Try search for the local paper where you or your ancestors lived.
- Try searching for individual names. Newspapers used to print names of people registered in local hotels and those traveling by steamship.
- Try searching for company names where your ancestors worked or business they owned.
The Library of Congress Photo, Print and Drawing site is also worthwhile to try searches.