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Library Research Guides

History Honors Colloquium

Resources for students in UM's History Honors Colloquium: how to find background information on a topic, how to search the library catalog, how to locate primary and secondary sources in a variety of formats, and how to create and manage citations.

Finding Archival Sources at Michigan and other libraries

Using Subject Terms to Find Primary Sources in Library Catalog Search

You can enhance your searches in Library Catalog Search by using subject terms that describe materials according to type.  If you enter your topic as a keyword (i.e., in the “all fields” field) in advanced search, you can also add subject terms that will specify a type of material related to that topic.

For example, if you are looking for diaries kept by soldiers fighting in the Civil War, you might begin by looking for "Civil War" AND "United States" in the all fields line and diaries OR personal narratives as a subject.

You can also add date ranges (e.g., 19th century) and geographic regions (Africa) as subject terms to focus in on the time period or area you are researching: e.g., biography AND “19th century” AND Norway.

Subject Terms that specify types of materials:

  •  archival resources
  •  archives
  • atlases
  • bibliography
  • biography
  • broadsides
  • case studies
  • charts, diagrams
  • concordances
  • correspondence
  • diaries
  • dictionaries
  • encyclopedias
  • handbooks, manuals, etc.
  • illustrations
  • indexes
  • manuscripts—catalogs
  • maps
  • newspapers
  • periodicals 
  • personal narratives
  • photograph collections
  • pictorial works
  • portraits
  • sermons
  • sources
  • speeches in Congress
  • speeches, addresses, etc.
  • statistics

Resources for finding Digital Materials

The following list is just a sample of the many digital collections available.