History

Articles
Course guides
Primary sources
Websites

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Primary subject databases
Database Description
America: History & Life Covers Canadian and American history. Comprehensive index, with abstracts, for journal articles and book reviews. View Full Description
Cambridge Histories The complete collection of this series covering history of Britain, science, art, politics and religion among others. View Full Description
Historical Abstracts Index of journal articles, books, etc. on world history (NOT Canada or the U.S.) from 1450 to the present. View Full Description

Main databases

Secondary subject databases
Database Description
American bibliography of Slavic and East European studies Print index for articles, books and other publications. View Full Description
American History in Video Video collection for the study of American history. View Full Description
ArchiviaNet Automated research tool that accesses databases of the National Archives. View Full Description
Bibliographie annuelle de l'histoire de France du cinquième siècle à 1958 Print index of books and articles for French history. View Full Description
Bibliography of Native North Americans Contains citations to books, journal articles, essays, conference papers, and government documents. View Full Description
C.R.I.S. : the combined retrospective index set to journals in history, 1838-1974 Print index for English-language periodicals for history. View Full Description
Oxford Bibliographies A collection of core resources in a variety of subjects. Selected by experts. View Full Description

Also useful

Tertiary subject databases
Database Description
19th Century Masterfile 1106-1930 An index to a variety of primary sources from the 12th century up to 1930. View Full Description
Annual bibliography of British and Irish history Print survey of UK books and articles. View Full Description
Archive Explorer Search tool for all Adam Matthew databases. View Full Description
Bibliography of Asian Studies Index for western-language materials on all subjects pertaining to East, Southeast, and South Asia. View Full Description
Bibliography of British and Irish History A bibliography that lists books and articles pertaining to British and Irish history View Full Description
Black Women in America Based on the 2005 three-volume print edition, includes biographical and topical articles. View Full Description
British and Irish Women's Letters and Diaries Full-text primary source material. View Full Description
C19: The Nineteenth Century Index Index to books, magazines, documents, newspapers. View Full Description
Canadian Research Index Citations to monographs and annual publications from Canadian government and institutional resources. View Full Description
Center for Research Libraries: Digital Collections Primary source material, in digital format or available for request through Interlibrary Loan. View Full Description
CFRI: Canadian Foreign Relations Index Index to articles, books, research papers, government documents, etc. View Full Description
CHA Dissertation Search Citation database of dissertations completed and in progress at Canadian universities in history and related fields. View Full Description
China: Trade, Politics & Culture 1793-1980 Full-text papers, plus maps, paintings, photographs and archival materials. View Full Description
Dictionary of Canadian Biography Online Historical, biographical dictionary with scholarly articles on thousands of individuals. View Full Description
Digital National Security Archive Full-text U.S. policy documents. View Full Description
Early Canadiana Online Digitized texts published between the first European settlement of Canada and the early twentieth century. View Full Description
Early Encounters in North America: Peoples, Cultures, and the Environment Full-text letters, diaries and memoirs. View Full Description
Empire Online Images of original manuscripts and printed materials produced between 1492 and 1962. Covers Africa, the Americas, Australasia, Oceana and South Asia. View Full Description
Encyclopedia of the Middle Ages Full-text articles covering the period from the 5th to the 15th century, with a focus on Europe and Christianity. View Full Description
Humanities & Social Sciences Index Retrospective: 1907-1984 Interdisciplinary database with articles from more than 1200 English-language periodicals. View Full Description
International bibliography of historical sciences Print bibliography for books and articles in history. View Full Description
Iter: Gateway to the Middle Ages and Renaissance Interdisciplinary bibliography of scholarly research on the period from 400 to 1700. View Full Description
JSTOR Current and back issues of journals in arts and sciences. View Full Description
Libris Canadiana Index for historical Canadian periodicals. View Full Description
Mass Observation Online Papers from the archive of a pioneering British social research organization. View Full Description
Medieval Travel Writing Important manuscripts by European travellers. View Full Description
North American Immigrant Letters, Diaries, and Oral Histories Full-text personal narratives of immigrants to the United States and Canada. View Full Description
North American Indian Thought and Culture Full-text biographies, autobiographies, diaries, letters, personal narratives and speeches. View Full Description
North American Women's Letters and Diaries Thousands of pages of diaries and letters from hundreds of women in North America. View Full Description
Oral History Online Full-text oral histories in English, including an index to freely available histories on the Web. View Full Description
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography Biographies of people of distinction in the British Isles and its colonies, from the 4th century to the 21st. View Full Description
Oxford Dictionary of the Renaissance Full-text articles on art, literature, science, culture, philosophy, religion, economics and history. Published 2003. View Full Description
Oxford Encyclopedia of Ancient Egypt Full-text articles on Egyptian civilization, from the predynastic era to the seventh century CE. View Full Description
Oxford Encyclopedia of Maritime History More than 900 articles on all aspects of seafaring from ancient Egypt to the present. View Full Description
Oxford Encyclopedia of Women in World History Includes more than 650 biographies of influential women and more than 600 topical articles. View Full Description
Periodicals Archive Online Full-text articles from journals in the humanities and social sciences. View Full Description
ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The Globe and Mail Full text of the Globe and Mail newspaper, from 1844 up to four years ago. View Full Description
ProQuest Historical Newspapers: The New York Times Full-text page images. View Full Description
ProQuest Historical Newspapers: Toronto Star Searchable full-page archive of the newspaper, Toronto Star. View Full Description
Slavery, Abolition & Social Justice Includes manuscripts, books, pamphlets, maps and images. View Full Description
U.K. Parliamentary Papers Digitally scanned Sessional Papers & supplementary material from Great Britain's House of Commons. (Some House of Lords papers, if presented to the House of Commons.) View Full Description

A primary source is a document produced within a particular historical context. Examples include manuscripts, memoirs, letters, diaries, speeches, official government records, and newspaper reports. The document may have published close to the time it was written, at a later time, or it may not be published at all, as is the case for many items in archival and manuscript collections.

Use subject headings for primary sources when searching the Primo catalogue.

Original documents in the Laurier Archives and Special Collections

The Archives and Special Collections Department contains original collections of primary material that are available for research. For online finding aids, or for more information, please contact the Archives.

Electronic Collections of Primary Resources

Primary source databases for history
Database Description
American Antiquarian Society (AAS) Historical Periodicals Collection US periodicals from the 1600s, 1700s and 1800s, on a wide variety of topics. View Full Description
American Theological Library Association (ATLA) Historical Monographs Collection Monographs from 13th century to early 1900s on religious language, development, and relationships with other issues. View Full Description
Archive Explorer Search tool for all Adam Matthew databases. View Full Description
Black Thought and Culture Full-text non-fiction works by leading African-Americans. View Full Description
British Library Newspapers All issues from 48 national, regional and local newspapers, from the British Library holdings. View Full Description
British and Irish Women's Letters and Diaries Full-text primary source material. View Full Description
Center for Research Libraries: Digital Collections Primary source material, in digital format or available for request through Interlibrary Loan View Full Description
China: Trade, Politics & Culture 1793-1980 Full-text papers, plus maps, paintings, photographs and archival materials. View Full Description
Daily Mail: Historical Archive 1896-2004 Complete archive of the British newspaper content, including the Atlantic Editions. View Full Description
Defining Gender Full-text manuscripts and printed works, plus illustrations. View Full Description
Digital National Security Archive Full-text U.S. policy documents. View Full Description
Early Canadiana Online Digitized texts published between the first European settlement of Canada and the early twentieth century. View Full Description
Early Encounters in North America Full-text letters, diaries and memoirs. View Full Description
Early English Books Online Full text, in facsimile, of more than 125,000 literary and historical texts as listed in the English Short Title Catalogue. View Full Description
Eighteenth Century Journals Rare, full-text journals on a wide range of topics. View Full Description
Empire Online Images of original manuscripts and printed materials produced between 1492 and 1962. Covers Africa, the Americas, Australasia, Oceana and South Asia. View Full Description
First World War Letters, diaries, posters and other primary documents related to World War One. View Full Description
Frontier Life: Borderlands, Settlement & Colonial Encounters Primary source documents on European and colonial frontier regions, 1650-1920. View Full Description
Globe and Mail Full text searchable, page view of the Globe and Mail from 1844 to four years ago. View Full Description
Illustrated London News Historical Archive 1842-2003 Searchable text plus page images of all issues of the "Illustrated London News". View Full Description
Indigenous Peoples: North America Collection of primary source documents on the indigenous peoples of North America. View Full Description
LLMC Digital An international collection of key historic legal texts and executive, legislative and judicial government documents. View Full Description
Manuscript Women's Letters and Diaries Collection of personal writings by American women of the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries. View Full Description
Mass Observation Online Papers from the archive of a pioneering British social research organization. View Full Description
Medieval Family Life Medieval documents on the topics of family, business, the law, violence, etc. View Full Description
Medieval Travel Writing Important manuscripts by European travellers. View Full Description
New York Times Full text searchable, page view of the Times from 1851 to three years ago. View Full Description
North American Immigrant Letters, Diaries, and Oral Histories Full-text personal narratives of immigrants to the United States and Canada. View Full Description
North American Indian Thought and Culture Full-text biographies, autobiographies, diaries, letters, personal narratives and speeches. View Full Description
North American Women's Letters and Diaries Thousands of pages of diaries and letters from hundreds of women in North America. View Full Description
Oral History Online Full-text oral histories in English, including an index to freely available histories on the Web. View Full Description
Our Ontario: Newspapers Over 200 years of community newspapers from across Ontario. View Full Description
Past Masters Full-text authoritative works by seminal figures in the Humanities. View Full Description
Slavery, Abolition & Social Justice Includes manuscripts, books, pamphlets, maps and images. View Full Description
Times : Digital Archive 1785-2010 Searchable full-text images of every page of the London Times newspaper. View Full Description
Toronto Star Full text searchable, page view of the Star from 1894 to two years ago. View Full Description
U.K. Parliamentary Papers Digitally scanned Sessional Papers & supplementary material from Great Britain's House of Commons. (Some House of Lords papers, if presented to the House of Commons.) View Full Description
Women and Social Movements in the United States, 1600-2000 Full-text documents, plus scholarly essays, book reviews, commentaries and bibliographies. View Full Description

Many Internet sites function as clearinghouses that identify and link to resources in particular subjects. The following sites focus on resources for History.

Comprehensive Sites

  • WWW-VL History Central Catalogue. Extensive site of links to the history portion of the WWW Virtual Library. Coverage in 4 major divisions: Research (Methods and Materials); Topics; Countries and Regions; Eras. Maintained at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy.

Repository Sites

Geographical Areas

  • United Kingdom
    • National Archives. The national archive (formerly known as the Public Record Office) of England, Wales and the United Kingdom; preserves the records of the central government and courts of law from the 11th century onwards.
    • Historical Manuscripts Commission. Established in 1869, the HMC is a source of information on the existence, location and nature of records and manuscripts in the UK. It maintains the UK National Register of Archives, and ARCHON, the principal access point for identifying manuscript sources for British history both in the UK and other parts of the world.
  • United States
    • Comprehensive sites
      • U.S. History. Yahoo site, with regional, subject and time-period arrangements.

Specific Fields of History

  • Labour History
    • International Institute of Social History. Founded in 1935 and located in Amsterdam, the IISH is one of the largest documentary and research organizations in the world dealing with social history in general and the history of the labour movement in particular.
  • Military History
  • Women
    • ViVa. Dutch acronym for Vrouwengeschiedenis in het Vaktijdschriff, which translates as Women's History in Professional Journals. It is the name for a bibliography of women's history in historical and women's studies journals. A 3-volume print bibliography (not available in the TUG libraries) has been published for the period 1975-1994. Since 1995, the project has been assumed by the International Institute of Social History, and is available electronically. Nearly 150 journals in English, Dutch, French, German, and the Scandinavian languages are indexed.
    • Internet Women's History Sourcebook. A subset of the Internet History Sourcebooks Project, located at the History Department of Fordham University, and edited by Paul Halsall, History Department, University of North Florida. The sourcebooks are "collections of public domain and copy-permitted historical texts ... for educational use" (Intro.). Arranged by major time-periods - ancient, mediaeval, modern - and subarranged geographically.