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Simpson Library | Special Collections

History and American Studies: Home

A research guide to finding books, articles, and other resources in History and American Studies


This guide is designed to help you research topics for your History and American Studies classes.  By clicking on the tabs at the top of each page, you can locate reference works and guides (for time-saving background material), appropriate databases (for magazine and journal articles), scholarly websites (that cover various aspects of the field), and class handouts (used in Art and Art History library classes).  Don't forget that you will have to cite and document the sources you use.  For that reason, each page has a link to the UMW Libraries' guide to Citing Resources.

You can focus your search in the library catalog by using the subdivisions of Library of Congress subject headings.  For an excellent, entertaining article on subdivisions and how researchers can "finesse their keyword searches," see "Amazing, Magic Searches!" (by Becky Kornegay, Heidi Buchanan, and Hiddy Morgan), published in the November 1, 2005, issue of Library Journal.  See also the subject headings and subdivisions handout on the Class Handouts page.

Have any questions?  Need help?  Here is the Library of Congress Classification Outline.  You can always stop by the Reference Desk for assistance.  Also, please feel free to contact me and we'll set up a research appointment (see box at right).  I look forward to working with you!  --Jack Bales

(Image of George Caleb Bingham's Daniel Boone Escorting Settlers Through the Cumberland Gap is from the Collections Search Center, the Smithsonian Institution, control number IAP 80030004 <>. The original painting is in the Washington University Gallery of Art.)

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