Making the Most of Internet Searches
Basic search engines are a great place to locate resources and begin research. By limiting search terms, students may find a greater amount of sources. For instance, if a student is doing a project on the Jackie Robinson, a general search in Google will list general biographies, fan pages, amongst other things. However, if the student wishes to locate primary sources they can maximize their results if they use the search terms: "Jackie Robinson"/ "Primary Sources."
Note: Students should be cautious when conducting web research. Although the resources are limitless and there are many valuable sites, students should approach the majority of non-academic sites with some skepticism.
Guide to Google
Google is generally the first place that many students begin their research. Search engines can be both friend and
foe in the NHD research process. There are some great techniques one can use
when researching using the Google search engine. Note: Google is not a source!
Google Scholar: Google Scholar is a specialized search engine
that is limited to academic sources only, eliminating fan sites and commonly unreliable sources.
Google Books: Google Books can give a student the opportunity
to look through all or part of a book before checking it out or purchasing it.
Many books can be read completely through Google Books.
Links to Colorado Library Catalogs and Collections
Note: Many Colorado library systems will have access to subscription services (i.e. New York Times archives, JSTOR, Project Muse, etc.) that students can use for FREE with their library account.
Auraria Library: Library of the University of Colorado Denver, Metropolitan State University, and Community College of Denver. Also a home for the Center for Colorado and the West.
Boulder Public Library
Denver Public Library: The Central Library is a friend of History Day (click here for their History Day page) and has numerous resources and collections for primary and secondary source research including the Western History Collection.
Douglas County Public Library
Jefferson County Public Library
Norlin Library: The library of the University of Colorado Boulder and home to the American Music Research Center, an Art and Architecture Collection, and an East Asian Collection. The institution hosts the University of Colorado Digital Library
Pikes Peak Library District
Prospector: A catalogue of Colorado and Wyoming libraries that allows patrons access to over 30 million books, journals, DVDs, CDs, videos and other materials. Students may request for materials to be sent to their home library.
Tutt Library: The library of Colorado College
Links to National Libraries and Collections
Library of Congress: Home to over 151 million items and national treasures, many of which are available online in their digitized collections: American Memory, Prints and Photographs, Historic Newspapers, Sound Recordings, Performing Arts, Veterans History Project, Motion Picture & Television Reading Room, Maps, Manuscript Reading Room
Links to Colorado Archives and Museums
Links to Online Archives and Museums
AMDOCS: Documents for the Study of American History: Houses digital documents from the years 800-2005.
American Journeys: A digital collection of early American exploration and settlement.
American Presidency Project: Comprehensive site by the University of California, Santa Barbara that includes a variety of presidential papers, addresses, speeches, etc.
Army Heritage Center: Includes primary sources related to American soldiers. Soldier Stories provide links to diaries and oral histories and the Photo Gallery highlights images from the American Civil War through Operation Desert Storm.
Avalon Project: Documents in Law, History and Diplomacy: A website with centuries-worth of legal documents collected and presented by the Yale Law School Lillian Goldman Law Library.
Bill of Rights Institute: Includes a great page on primary source documents of the Founding Fathers.
Black Past: An expansive collection on African American history.
Digital History: Site includes online exhibits, primary source documents, and topic ideas on American history.
Documenting the American South: Produced by the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the website offers a variety of sources regarding the history and culture of the American South.
Famous Trials: Site hosted by the University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC) School of Law reviews trials spanning from 399 B.C. to 2006 A.D.
Foreign Relations of the United States: An incredible collection from the University of Wisconsin of various documents related to America's policies with other nations around the world starting in 1861.
HarpWeek: Website devoted to the history and articles published in Harper's Weekly. Features unique political cartoons, particularly those from Thomas Nast.
History: Africa: Hosted by the University of Washington Libraries, the site has several helpful links to primary and secondary sources concerning topics specific to Africa.
History: Asia: Hosted by the University of Washington Libraries, the site has several helpful links to primary and secondary sources concerning topics specific to Asia.
History: Latin America: Hosted by the University of Washington Libraries, the site has several helpful links to primary and secondary sources concerning topics specific to Latin America.
History Matters: Website of the American Social History Project Center for Media and the Center for History and New Media that includes surveys of American history and numerous primary source documents.
History of the United Kingdom: Primary Documents: A collection of Brigham Young University with links spanning hundreds of years of British history.
In the First Person: An Index to Letters, Diaries, Oral Histories, and Other Personal Narratives
Living Room Candidate: Presidential Campaign Commercials 1952-2012
Mark Twain Project: Houses the collections of Mark Twain's letters and writings.
Mexico from the Conquistadors to the Present: A collection of links and guides created by Mount St. Mary's University
National Archives: Home to many of America's national treasures, many of which have been digitized for online use. The Declaration of Independence, Constitution, and Bill of Rights are available on their Charters of Freedom page. The site also hosts online exhibits. Be sure to also check out Founders Online and Digital Vaults.
National Museum of Australia: Primary Sources: Online collection of a variety of topics related to the history of Australia.
Open Collections: Sponsored by Harvard University, the site has an expansive system of digital collections that include items over a 400 year span of history. Collections include: the Islamic Heritage Project, Expeditions and Discoveries, Contagion: Historical Views of Disease and Epidemics, Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930, Women Working, 1800-1930
Oral History Online, Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley : Collection of transcribed interviews conducted by the Regional Oral History Office ranging in a variety of topics and time periods.
POTUS: Presidents of the United States: Provides overviews, speeches, and writings of the U.S. Presidents as collected by the Internet Public Library.
Salem Witch Trials Documentary Archive and Transcription Project
Smithsonian Institution: The world's largest museum and research complex at the click of a mouse. The Smithsonian Institute also boasts several online exhibits and digital collections.
Supreme Court Database: Home to over two hundred pieces of information about Supreme Court decisions between 1946-2012.
World War I Document Archive: A collection of Brigham Young University with links to treaties, diaries, images, biographies and more.
Links to Citation Guides and Organizational Tools
Noodle Tools: Tool for organizing research specifically for NHD students.
Purdue Online Writing Lab: Incredible resource for learning how to compose academic papers and cite using MLA or Chicago.