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Research Resources: Class Guides

HIS 420: Lincoln Seminar

Reference Resources - Encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks and bibliographies

Reference or secondary sources are informational resources written by individuals who were not the actual participants in the topic at hand. They may be of value to your research since they often provide greater objectivity and different perspectives as a result of the passage of time. Common secondary sources include encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, and bibliographies.

Please Note: The general call number range for the United States Civil War is E456-E655

The Abraham Lincoln Encyclopedia
Reserve Desk Shadek-Fackenthal Library Ref E457 .N48 1982

Encyclopedia of the American Civil War
Ref Room E468 .H47 2000 Vol. 1-5

Encyclopedia of the Confederacy
Ref Room E487 .E55 1993 Vol. 1-4

The American Civil War : a handbook of literature and research
Ref Room Z1242 .A47 1996

The Encyclopedia of Southern history
Ref Room F207.7 .E52

Search Terminology - Keywords and Subject Headings

When conducting research, always consider alternative keywords and subject headings for your topic. Begin by analyzing your topic or research question, and break it down into its key concepts. What keywords appear? Are there alternative keywords that come to mind?

For this course, keywords may include: confederacy, confederate, southern, rebel, gray, union, northern, blue, Antietum, Sharpsburg, Abe, Abraham etc.

Subject headings may include: "United States History Civil War 1861-1865", or "Slaves Southern States", or "Lincoln, Abraham, 1809-1865 Oratory" etc.

How to find and locate books and films

  • Click here to link to the F&M Library Catalog. In finding books for this class, try using the keyword and subject terms mentioned above.
  • When you discover a book of interest, select the title to see the complete "Item Information." Click on "Catalog Record" to look at the assigned subject headings for that item. Note related subject headings, and click on them to find other books that are described in a similar way, and may prove useful.
  • Remember to search out call numbers in both the STACKS and the REFERENCE ROOM. Call numbers are designed to mirror themselves in these two areas. If you find a valuable book in the STACKS, you will find similar, high quality REFERENCE items under the same call number in the REFERENCE ROOM.

How to find and locate journal articles

Start by consulting the following electronic resources:

A collection of full-text articles from over 1500 scholarly journals, many dating from the nineteenth-century to the last 4 or 5 years. Select Advanced Search to strategically search amongst 45 disciplines. Choose PDF from within JStor to properly view and print articles.

OmniFile Full Text Mega
Access to full text articles, page images, article abstracts, and citations from thousands of sources. Coverage back as early as 1982.

America: History and Life
Comprehensive bibliography of articles on the history and culture of the United States and Canada, from prehistory to present. Covers abstracts 1964 to the present.

America's Historical Newspapers
Fully searchable, cover-to-cover reproductions of early American newspapers including titles from all 50 present states. Includes: Early American Newspapers, Series 1 (1690-1876), Early American Newspapers, Series 2 (1758-1900) and Early American Newspapers, Series 3 (1829-1922).

Pennsylvania Civil War Era Newspaper Collection
Pennsylvania Civil War Era Newspaper Collection contain all the words, photographs, and advertisements from selected newspapers published during the pivotal years before, during, and after the U.S. Civil War.

HarpWeek: The Civil War Era 1857-1877
Access to Harper's Weekly during the Civil War and Reconstruction eras. Provides both text and image searching capabilities.

If the article you find is available in full-text, follow the appropriate links. If not, take note of the JOURNAL NAME being cited, and go to the Journals at F&M page to see if the library subscribes to the journal. If so, locate the journal in print or microfilm, and make a copy for your research.

For additional article resources, look under the Electronic Resources - A to Z List on the Library homepage.

Don't Forget: Always consult the bibliography at the end of a journal article for additional resources!

World Wide Web

The World Wide Web can be a helpful environment in which to access scholarly information. To search for more authoritative sites and information, use mediated search directories such as Google Scholar.

Abraham Lincoln Timelines - ALPLM Timeline
Useful for checking dates and establishing chronology.

Abraham Lincoln Timelines - The Lincoln Log
This daily chronology of the life of Abraham Lincoln is based on "Lincoln Day-by-Day: A Chronology," published in 1960 by the Government Printing Office.

Congressional Globe - Records of Congress
Official record of the debates of Congress, 1833-73.

Abraham Lincoln: A Life by Michael Burlingame - Unedited Manuscript by Chapters
The definitive biography with helpful footnotes.

Collected Papers of Abraham Lincoln
Keyword searchable correspondence of Lincoln.

Legal Papers of Abraham Lincoln
From 1836 to 1861, Abraham Lincoln practiced law in the courts of central Illinois. This series is an ongoing effort to collect and publish the surviving documentary record of Abraham Lincoln's quarter-century legal career in the federal, state, and county court systems..

Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress
The complete Abraham Lincoln Papers at the Library of Congress consists of approximately 20,000 documents. Most letters do not appear in the Collected Papers. Click on transcription button to get to typescript.

Sermons Given on the Occasion of the Assassination of Abraham Lincoln
This site contains the full text of 57 sermons published on the occasion of Abraham Lincoln's assassination. The original copies of the sermons have been drawn from the Pitts Theology Library (Candler School of Theology, Emory University). Both TIFF images and searchable text files are available.

Additional Help

Contact Christopher Raab for further assistance or fill out a research appointment request form to meet with a librarian.

Last updated: 8/12/11 cmr


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