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Online Reference

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Dictionaries, Glossaries & Encyclopedic Sources

Search Engines & Directories

  • Google Books - Search contents of books and magazines from the shelves of a number of research libraries such as Harvard, Stanford, and the University of Oxford.  Out of copyright material may be fully viewed and downloaded.  All content is serchable and bibliographic information is supplied.
  • The Internet Archive provides access to various scanned texts (almost 2 million), recorded video and audio.  Much of the material is downloadable or may be used online via various formats.


  • Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database - Comprehensive database on the slave trade in the Atlantic. Find ships names of captains, description of slaves, places of embarkation and landing. Thorough and easy to use. Also includes links to other relevant sites and lesson plans for secondary school students.

Writing Guides


Associations and Societies

  • American Historical Association - Provides links to online journals and information about jobs, scholarships and awards, and membership. Founded in 1884 for the promotion of historical studies. 
  • Organization of American Historians (OAH) - Largest learned society devoted to the study of American history. Provides links to three OAH publications. Must be an OAH member to view online articles. 
  • Phi Alpha Theta History Honor Society - International honor society for students and teachers of history. Web site provides information about membership, publications, scholarship and awards. 
  • World History Association - Founded in 1982 to promote the study of global history by encouraging and supporting research, education, and communication. Provides information about membership, scholarships, publications, and employment opportunities.


Web Sources

Comprehensive Web Sites

  • Best of History Web Sites - Provides links to over 800 "accurate and useful" history-related web sites. Also features links to lesson plans, teacher guides, and activities and games for history instructors. 
  • Digital History - Includes an up-to-date U.S. history textbook; annotated primary sources on United States, Mexican American, and Native American history, and slavery; and succinct essays on the history of ethnicity and immigration, film, private life, and science and technology. Visual histories of Lincoln's America and America's Reconstruction contain text by Eric Foner and Olivia Mahoney. The Doing History feature lets users reconstruct the past through the voices of children, gravestones, advertising, and other primary sources. Reference resources include classroom handouts, chronologies, encyclopedia articles, glossaries, and an audio-visual archive including speeches, book talks and e-lectures by historians, and historical maps, music, newspaper articles, and images. 
  • WWW-VL History Central Catalogue - World history links organized by country, era, and topic, with links to research methods and materials.

Archives & Primary Sources

  • AMDOCS: Documents for the Study of American History - Collection of links to 400 plus full-text primary source documents relating to the study of American History
  • American Colonists Library: A Treasure of Primary Documents - A massive collection of the literature and documents which were most relevant to the colonists' lives in America
  • Chronicling America - provides access to historical newspapers from across the country, currently over 1.2 million pages. From the Library of Congress. 
  • Civil War Primary Documents and Personal Diaries - Civil War Primary Documents, Personal Diaries, Journals, Letters, Cartoons, Art, Images, Poetry, Literature, and Music 
  • David Rumsey Map Collection has over 10,000 maps online. The collection focuses on rare 18th and 19th century North and South America maps and other cartographic materials. Historic maps of the World, Europe, Asia and Africa are also represented. Collection categories include antique atlas, globe, school geography, maritime chart, state, county, city, pocket, wall, children's and manuscript maps.
  • EuroDocs: Primary Historical Documents From Western Europe - Extensive links to Western European historical documents that are transcribed or translated. 
  • Finding Primary Sources - A guide to the basic resources and strategies for finding primary sources. 
  • Historical Text Archive - publishes high quality articles, books, essays, documents, historical photos, and links, screened for content, for a broad range of historical subjects. 
  • Historical United States Census Browser - Contains data that describe the people and economy of the United States for each state and county from 1790-1960. 
  • Library of Congress, American Memory - Extensive primary source of materials on United States history. 7 million plus digital items with 100 plus historical collections. 
  • Library of Congress, Special Collections - Over 300 collections relating to various aspects of American history. Art, folklore, geography, music and city life are a few examples. 
  • The National Archives and Records Administration Archival Research Catalog (ARC) - Online catalog of NARA's nationwide holdings in the Washington, DC area, Regional Archives and Presidential Libraries. There are also 529,321,233 Logical Data Records and 214,261 Artifacts described in ARC. 
  • National Security Archive - is a non-governmental research institute and library that collects and publishes declassified documents obtained through the U.S. Freedom of Information Act, a public interest law firm defending and expanding public access to government information through the FOIA, and an indexer and publisher of the documents in books, microfiche, and electronic formats. 
  • Office of Coast Survey: Historical Map & Chart Collection Overview - Contains over 20,000 maps and charts from the late 1700s to present day. The Collection includes some of the nation's earliest nautical charts, hydrographic surveys, topographic surveys, geodetic surveys, city plans and Civil War battle maps. 
  • Our Documents - 100 milestone documents of American history. These documents reflect our diversity and our unity, our past and our future, and mostly our commitment as a nation to continue to strive to "form a more perfect union." We want everyone - students, teachers, parents, and the general public - to read these milestone documents, consider their meaning, discuss them, and decide which are the most significant and why. View scans of original documents, not only the Declaration of Independence and Gettysburg Address, but also material such as the original sketches of the Great Seal of the United States and the Aerial Photograph of Missiles in Cuba. 
  • Papers of the Presidents of the United States - Full text of selected documents, including inaugural addresses, annual messages, proclamations, vetoes 
  • Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection - Large collection of online maps of all types as well as a large collection of online historical maps. (University of Texas at Austin) 
  • Primary Sources on the Web - History - Links to web sites relating to United States and World History primary sources. 
  • Repositories of Primary Sources - over 5500 web sites describing holdings of manuscripts, archives, rare books, historical photographs, and other primary sources for the research scholar. (University of Idaho)

Historical Topics

History News Network: Because the Past is the Present and the Future too - Current event articles covered by historians putting them in an historical perspective. "HNN Features Articles and Op Eds by Historians from Both the Left and the Right..."

Geographical or Cultural History - Local
  • Leonard H. Axe Library, Special Collections and University Archives contain material pertaining primarily to Kansas and Pittsburg State University. Its specialty is printed materials from Southeast Kansas, its culture and inhabitants, and the correspondence, libraries, business files and memorabilia of significant Southeast Kansans.
  • Axe Digital Collection - browse and search selected material from Axe Special Collections and Archives pertaining primarily to Southeast Kansas and Pittsburg State University. The collections specialize in printed materials from Southeast Kansas, its culture and inhabitants, and the correspondence, libraries, business files and memorabilia of significant Southeast Kansans. Comprized of high quality scans of photographs, correspondence, manuscripts, and other non-print materials.
Geographical or Cultural History - Kansas
  • History Gateway at Kansas - Numerous resources pertaining to Kansas history. 
  • Kansas History Online - is a project of the Hall Center for the Humanities at the University of Kansas in association with the Kansas State Historical Society.  The site's approach "combines scholarly methodology with magazine-style journalism".  For high school level on up.
  • Kansas History Websites - Extensive web site that links to online resources about Kansas History. Features web links to Kansas Native American history, Territorial and Civil War, Pioneer, Cattle Town, and Railroad histories. 
  • Kansas State Historical Society - Provides links to research sources. Extensive book collection, archival collection, documents, and other materials related to the history of Kansas. Link to Kansas History: A Journal of the Central Plains. Some online articles available. 
    • Kansas Memory - Primary sources in Kansas History.  Photographs, plat books,  .  Grouped by county, subject, time period, material type, etc. Over 11,000 items.
Geographical or Cultural History - United States
  • African-American Mosaic: A Library of Congress Resource Guide for the Study of Black History & Culture - the Mosaic is the first Library-wide resource guide to the institution's African- American collections. Covering the nearly 500 years of the black experience in the Western hemisphere, the Mosaic surveys the full range size, and variety of the Library's collections, including books, periodicals, prints, photographs, music, film, and recorded sound. 
  • From Revolution to Reconstruction... and what happened afterwards - The main body of this hypertext project, which was started in 1994, comes from a number of USIA-publications: An Outline of American History, An Outline of the American Economy, An Outline of American Government, and An Outline of American Literature. The text of these Outlines has not been changed, but they have been enriched with hypertext-links to relevant documents, original essays, other Internet sites, and to other Outlines.
Geographical or Cultural History - World
  • African History Sourcebook - has full-text sources for African history arranged by topics. Includes the Black Athena Debate, human origins, Egypt, Nubia, Ethiopia, Islam in Africa, West African kingdoms, Great Zimbabwe, with topics up to the present
  • Ancient Greece - An informative and well illustrated guide to Ancient Greece, covering art and architecture, politics, 0lympics, geography, mythology, peoples, war, history, and other topics.
  • Ancient Mexico - Excellent resource in the study of Ancient Mexico, Pre-Columbian period. Includes maps, timelines, an informative bibliography, and features first-person excerpts from historical sources. Example Hernando Cortez.
  • East Asian History Sourcebook - covers primary source materials for researching the history of China, Japan, and Korea from ancient to modern times.
  • History links at LANIC: Latin American Network Information Center - links on all aspects of Latin American Culture. Browsable by country, subject, and digital initiatives.
  • World History Sources - A guide to the one-hundred best online primary source archives in world history (Africa, Latin America, South and Southeast Asia, East Asia, Middle East/North Africa, and Europe) with a review of each site's merits, limitations, and teaching potential.

Military Conflict/History

  • Civil War Homepage - One of the largest and most comprehensive collections of Civil War related material available on the Internet
  • Cold War International History Project - The Cold War International History Project (CWIHP), a program of the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars, has been a primary agent in helping to make these new sources of information accessible to Cold War researchers.
  • Military History Encyclopedia on the Web - Information on battles, wars, generals and any other element of military history. At the moment, our main strengths are the Second World War, American War of Independence, Seven Years War, English Civil War and the First World War.
  • Military History Online - covers synopses of battles of the various wars, including: the American Civil War, WWI, and WWII, Korea, Vietnam, etc.
  • National Socialism and World War II: Primary Documents - Links to primary documents relating to the history of National Socialism and World War II. Documents are in English and German.
  • Vietnam War Declassification Project - Declassified National Security Adviser files released by the Gerald R. Ford Library in commemoration of the 25th anniversary of the fall of Phnom Penh & Saigon.
  • World War II General Resources - Comprehensive web site with links to maps, timeline, and primary sources relating to World War II.
  • WWW-VL: HISTORY: UNITED STATES - Provides informative links to online sources relating to United States history. Features research tools and aids. Covers varied historical topics, chronology, and associations and societies. Special feature is a calendar that covers special history events, conferences, etc. in the United States.

Online Journals

  • Common-Place: A Common Place, an Uncommon Voice Common-place is a common place for exploring and exchanging ideas about early American history and culture. A bit friendlier than a scholarly journal, a bit more scholarly than a popular magazine, Common-place speaks--and listens--to scholars, museum curators, teachers, hobbyists, and just about anyone interested in American history before 1900.
  • History and Theory - An academic journal which publishes articles, monographs, book reviews, summaries, and bibliographies principally in four areas: theories of history, narrativism, historical method, and related disciplines.

Government Documents

  • Catalog of U.S. Government Publications - a finding tool for federal publications that includes descriptive records for historical and current publications and provides direct links to those that are available online. Users can search by authoring agency, title, subject, and general key word, or click on "Advanced Search" for more options.
  • GPO Access - is a service of the U.S. Government Printing Office that provides free electronic access to a wealth of important information products produced by the Federal Government. The information provided on this site is the official, published version and the information retrieved from GPO Access can be used without restriction, unless specifically noted.

Colleges & Universities

Career & Job Information

  • Careers for Students of History (American Historical Association) - "What can I do with a major in history?" Career counselors, job fairs, and even college faculty are full of advice about the many careers open to students who are contemplating or have completed an undergraduate major in history. While all that advice can be valuable, it does not address or answer a quite different question that many students who have chosen history as a major or minor may ask: what careers are open to me if I want to be an historian?
  • H-Net Job Guide - posts academic position announcements in History and the Humanities, the Social Sciences, and Rhetoric and Composition, and serves a broad audience of administrators, faculty members, archivists, librarians, and other professionals in the humanities and social sciences.
  • Organization of American Historians-Jobs Online - Job listings in the field of history, provided by the Organization of American Historians