Warfare from Knights to the Thin Red Line

Course #: HI220

Secondary Sources


You need to understand the context and background of your topic. After an initial web and wikipedia search, move on to academic reference sources. Search for anything that you already know, i.e., names, places, battlefields, etc.

Books (monographs)

Books (monographs) provide comprehensive coverage to a topic. Chances are high that Laurier or a TUG library owns the book you might need, but you can also request items through Interlibrary loan.

  • search Primo for keywords on your topic
    • limit your search to books (not articles at this point)
    • once you find a relevant item, look at the subject headings
  • ebooks
    • ProQuest Ebook Central: search the entire content of ebooks, not just the citation/subjects
    • Google Books: often helpful to search contents of a book you also have in print
    • Internet Archive: best used if you have a specific title or author; most pre-1923 items


Articles (peer reviewed or popular) are found in journals, and sometimes as essays within books. While a Primo search or a bibliography will also return article results alongside book results, you can be more certain of your results if you search one of the libraries research databases:

The following databases contain older material and are likely already indexed in the two resources above. However, you can also search the entire full text of the articles themselves...which may or may not be helpful.

Primary Sources

The primary sources you will use for this course are likely to be reproductions: either in print or online


Print reproductions are contain in books which will be catalogued in Primo. For this course, subject terms such as "sources" or personal narratives" can be added to other keywords, for example (see a complete list from MIT):

The term "Sourcebook" is often included in a books title, e.g., "medieval sourcebook"


There are dozens of sites created by organizations that contain digitized copies of sources; the list below is not exhaustive, and in some cases will point to the same content linked from a number of sites. Every site is different, and has different search and browse capabilities. To use these sites:

  • Locate the "about" page to understand the scope of the content
  • look for groups of information beneath a label, e.g., subjects, topics, genre, theme, etc.
  • look for the site search function

Hosting sites

Uber sites