This is the "Online Databases" page of the "U.S. History - Sutton" guide.
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Resource guide for finding online and print sources (primary and secondary) about topics in U.S. History.
Last Updated: Jul 2, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

Online Databases Print Page

Easy Search from the UIUC Library

Use the Easy Search or click on Advanced Search next to the Go button to select sources you would like to search. Click on "What am I Searching?" to see a list of sources included in each category. For history topics, try Multi-Subject Resources, Arts & Humanities (includes history databases) and/or Social Sciences. Results will include resources in many databases!

Online Reference Sources

  • Credo Reference
    Use Credo Reference to search across 422 reference books including dictionaries, encyclopedias, and subject-specific resources.
  • Gale Virtual Reference Library
    Full-text access to dozens of encyclopedias in all subject areas. Good selection of history encyclopedias!
  • Britannica Online
    The online version of your favorite all-encompassing general-knowledge encyclopedia.

Google Scholar

This service is Google's method of searching the invisible web. To see the full text of many of these sources, you need to be "authenticated" as a legitimate UIUC user. Do so by searching for the source title on the A-Z list of electronic journals and newspapers. Also try the advanced search.

Full-Text Databases

For those in the know, full-text means entire journal articles, so you get the whole story.

  • America History & Life
    Identifies articles on U.S. and Canadian history. Includes magazine and journal articles, book reviews, dissertations, and media reviews. It an item you are interested in does not include the full text, click on the blue rectangular “Discover” link that connects you to full text that may be available through another one of our database services. Otherwise, find locations of periodicals in the University Library by going to the A-Z list of electronic journals and databases or using the online catalog to locate titles that are only available in print or on microform. For those searches, select “Start of Journal/Magazine Title” in the Classic Catalog.

    Note the multiple search options that are available. It's a good idea to limit your search by publication type and language when starting out (unless you really want to read lots of dissertations and/or your Bulgarian/Russian/German is really, really good).
    Older, full text articles from more than 100 journals in areas including African American studies, anthropology, business, economics, education, finance, history, literature, management, philosophy, political science, sociology. Most include full texts of complete journals from their inception up to a “moving wall,” which is a fixed period of time ranging, in most cases, from 2 to 5 years, that defines the gap between the most recently published issue and the date of the most recent issues available in JSTOR. The Library will, in many cases, have a separate subscription for the more recent issues.
  • Project Muse
    Searches full-text in over 150 journals supplied by 10 university presses. Click on the search button to start your search. Muse works well for more recent periodical issues, while JSTOR (see above) reproduces older volumes.
  • LexisNexis
    Full-text access to hundreds of recent (and even not-so-recent) newspaper and magazine articles. Search tip: put quotation marks around unique phrases. On the results page, notice that you can narrow your search by clicking on the categories in the left toolbar. Click on the plus sign to expand your options and click on the blue link to narrow your search.
  • MLA International Bibliography
    For those with a literature focus. This database indexes thousands of books and articles published on modern languages, literatures, folklore, and linguistics. Full-text provided for many of these items.

Subject Guide

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Other Databases

  • Sociological Abstracts
    Identifies articles, conference papers, books and dissertations in sociology and related fields in social and behavioral sciences. Great database for research on historical events that have socio-cultural implications. Note: NOT a full-text database.
  • Public Affairs Information Service
    Identifies articles, books, websites, statistics, yearbooks, directories, conference proceedings, pamphlets, reports, government documents, and microfiches on political, social, public policy issues. Again, NOT full-text, but PAIS includes a huge amount of unique material. For best results, use the advanced search.
  • Illinois Harvest
    If your topic has anything to do with Illinois, check out this database.

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