Selected Primary Source Collections


  • Sabin Americana, 1500-1926 (Gale)
    Offers digital access to books, pamphlets, serials, and other sources published worldwide from 1500 to the early 20th century and documenting the history of the Americas. Titles were selected based on Joseph Sabin's Bibliotheca Americana.
  • American History, 1493-1945 (Adam Matthew Digital)
    Includes letters, diaries, government documents, business records, books, pamphlets, newspapers, broadsides, photographs, artwork, and maps sourced from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in New York City.




  • Medical Services and Warfare (Adam Matthew Digital)
    Documents the history of injury, treatment, and disease on the front line from 1850 to 1949. Covers the Crimean War, the American Civil War, and the First and Second World War. Charts scientific advances through hospital records, medical reports, and first-hand accounts. Includes a Civil War patient database that permits queries of patient records. Women at war, nursing, sanitation, and medical development and equipment are some of the key themes of this collection.
  • Popular Medicine in America (Adam Matthew Digital)
    Documents the history of popular remedies and treatments in nineteenth century America through primary sources from the Library Company of Philadelphia and the Philadelphia Museum of Art. The collection includes books, trade cards, pamphlets, broadsides, posters, advertisements, anatomy guides, and ephemera.
  • Clara Barton Papers (Library of Congress)
    Presents the papers of Clara Barton (1821-1912), nurse and educator. The bulk of the collection dates from 1861 to 1912 including correspondence, diaries and journals, reports, addresses, legal and financial papers, organizational records, lectures, writings, scrapbooks, biographical material, and memorabilia. They relate primarily to Barton's work providing relief services during the American Civil War and the Franco-Prussian War in Europe, her founding in 1881 and subsequent leadership of the American National Red Cross, and her establishment in 1905 of the National First Aid Association of America.
  • Mary Ann Bickerdyke Papers (Library of Congress)
    Features the papers of Mary Ann Ball Bickerdyke (1817-1901), a Civil War nurse and agent for the United States Sanitary Commission who was known as "Mother Bickerdyke" to Union soldiers. A large portion of the papers consists of correspondence grouped into family, general, and special correspondence files.


  • American Periodicals (ProQuest)
    Provides access to a selection of American magazines and journals published from the colonial period to the early 20th century.
  • Godey's Lady's Book (Accessible Archives)
    Presents the complete run of the magazine from 1830 to 1898. Also published as Godey's Magazine and Lady's Book. Includes all color plates as they originally appeared in the magazine.


United States

Encyclopedias, Handbooks & Companions

The Library has a large collection of reference works, most of them in electronic format. Selected titles are listed below. Discover more encyclopedias, handbooks and companions through a search in the Articles & more file of the Library's catalog. Simply limit your search results to Reference under the Format menu.

Cambridge History of the American Civil War
Three volumes cover military affairs, affairs of the state, and affairs of the people respectively.

Oxford Handbook of American Women's and Gender History
Explores the history of American women and how ideas about gender shaped their access to political and cultural power over six centuries. Part IV, War and Transformation includes a chapter on "Women, the Civil War, and Reconstruction" by Hannah Rosen.

American History (Oxford Research Encyclopedia)
Offers peer-reviewed topical introductions and literature reviews written by well-regarded authorities.

African American Studies Center (Oxford University Press)
Contains a selection of information sources ranging from the authoritative Encyclopedia of African American History to the African American National Biography project. Selected primary sources, maps, images, charts, and tables round out the collection.

American National Biography Online (Oxford University Press)
Presents authoritative biographies of influential people who lived in what is now the United States. Covers only deceased subjects.

Oxford Bibliographies (Oxford University Press)  Tutorial
Presents peer-reviewed, annotated bibliographies and expert commentary on current scholarship in selected disciplines including African American Studies.

Secondary Sources

Books & Media
Books are an important source of critical literature. Take advantage of the search options available in the library's catalog. Start with a keyword search and use the hyper-linked Library of Congress subjects to focus your search results. Alternatively, use available facets such as topic and language to narrow search results. Subject searches can significantly increase or decrease search results. Use the Online collection facet to limit results to ebooks.

Articles & More Search
Indexes journals in all disciplines. Check Limit to articles from peer-reviewed journals to focus on scholarly journal articles.

Provides a full text archive of academic journals and books in the humanities, social sciences, and mathematics. The most recent three to five years of a journal are usually not included.

America: History and Life (EBSCO)
Indexes the literature covering the history and culture of the United States and Canada from prehistory to the present. Includes citations for journal and magazine articles, book reviews, and dissertations. Abstracts of journal articles are included together with selected full-text. Indexing goes back to 1964.