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Finding Primary Sources for Historical Research: Finding Articles

How to find primary sources for historical topics

Finding Articles

The Library has journals, magazines, and newspapers that go back many decades. Articles from newspapers and magazines written at the time an event occurred by someone who participated in or observed an event can be a good source of primary information.

To find articles within journals and magazines, it is necessary to use an index or a database. Indexes provide citations to articles in various publications; a short abstract of an article is sometimes provided. Databases contain the full-text of at least some of the articles found in the database.

See the Finding Historical Newspaper Articles user guide for information on newspapers.


Print Indexes

To find citations for articles in issues of periodicals published before the early 1980s, you may need to use a print index. You can also use the online database Readers' Guide Retrospective, which provides magazine article citations from 1890-1982. More recent articles might be found in an online index or database. The print indexes below are located in the Reference stacks on the second floor of the Library unless otherwise indicated.


Article Databases

Andersen Library has many indexes and databases. The following are useful for finding source materials in history. Not all of the material in these databases is primary. Evaluate carefully before using.

For additional history databases, see the Finding Secondary Sources for Historical Research guide. For a complete listing of all Library online indexes and databases, see the Articles & Databases web page.