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LIBRARY GUIDE TO HST 300 - Seminar in Historical Research (Clark)

Find Background Information
Find Books
  • Unrestricted Resource Kresge Library Catalog
    You can use the library catalog to find books, scholarly & popular journals, government documents, dvds & videos, reference materials, sheet music, and more.
  • MelCat
    A statewide catalog of many of Michigan's libraries. It allows you to request books at another library be sent to Kresge Library for you.
  • Restricted to OU students, faculty, and staff WorldCat
    A catalog of materials owned by libraries worldwide. How to export to RefWorks
Find Articles
Here are the main databases for scholarly articles on American history:

Find Primary Sources
  • ARTstor
    A digital library of more than one million images in the arts, architecture, humanities, and social sciences with a suite of software tools to view, present, and manage images
  • Restricted to OU students, faculty, and staff VAST: Academic Video Online
    A multidisciplinary collection of videos that touches on the curriculum needs of virtually every department. Look for specialized collections (Theatre in Video, Opera in Video) under Advanced Search.
Documentary histories
  • Annals of America  (in the library's reference collection on the 2nd floor, call number E 173 .A793) contains hundreds of primary source documents.
  • You may also find primary sources by searching the Library Catalog. Often, important primary sources are gathered together and reprinted in books. The following words and phrases in the Subject Headings of a book record may indicate that the item contains primary source material:
--Sources --Photography
--Personal Narratives --Interviews
--Correspondence --Sermons
--Diaries --Songs and music
--Notebooks, sketchbooks, etc. --Facsimiles
--Records and correspondence --Manuscripts
You can use any of these terms in a Boolean Keyword search of your topic. For example: eisenhower and correspondence.

Government documentsArchives on the web

The history research guide and 20th century U.S. history guide contain references to some of the largest digital archives online.

For help in working with primary sources, consult History Matters and American Historical Association Archives Wiki - A searchable wiki of information on print and digital archives worldwide.

Beyond Kresge Library

To request an item from another library: 

MelCat (Michigan libraries)
ILLiad (libraries worldwide).
Locate a Cited Article

An effective research strategy is to consult the reference lists and bibliographies of books and journal articles that you find, to help you identify other valuable materials on your topic.Then, determine whether KL owns that book or journal article.

e.g.: Suppose you find the following citation in the bibliography of a book:
B. J.Bernstein, "Truman and the A-bomb: Targeting Noncombatants, Using the Bomb, and his Defending the 'Decision,'" Journal of Military History 62 no. 3 (1998): 547-570.

Check to see if KL owns this journal (Journal of Military History) by searching Kresge Library’s Library Catalog. If not, you can order a copy through Interlibrary Loan.

Video tutorial on how to find journals owned by the library

Research in the Oakland University Archives
The Oakland University Archives documents the history of the University and its impact in Oakland County, Michigan, and beyond.

Some key aspects of American history since the 1960s are illustrated in the archives.

Explore examples of topics and primary sources to research them.

The Billie Farnum Papers are also a good source for research on the 1960s in the U.S. Billie Farnum served in the House of Representatives as a Democrat for the 19th Congressional District (around OU) in 1965-1967. His papers document the legislative and political history of the Johnson era, both in Michigan and the U.S.

Library Contact
Picture: Dominique Daniel

Dominique Daniel
Humanities Librarian for History and Modern Languages

To make an appointment:


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