Learning Commons | Cardinal Cushing Library
Archival Research

What Are Archives

An archive is a receiving institution which means that it acquires the inactive records of its parent organization and is a repository for historical information on that organization. Archives, in addition to maintaining the records of its parent organization, may collect documents related to a theme or area of interest (e.g. history of a region, theater or religion) and serve as the place where research can be done to learn more about the organization or its affiliated collections.
Sr. Clare Francis, Director of the Library, 1963-1964
A library is a collecting institution meaning it gathers published material from a variety of places to serve the informational needs of its patrons. Libraries do not only rely upon information from their parent organization.

In an archive, information is organized according to collections that follow the principle of original order; that is, a collection should be organized according to how the creator or collecting entity arranged the documents in the collection. This is done because, while documents provide the content of a collection, the principle of original order provides the context for a collection. If there is no original order to a collection, then the archivists will organize the collection according to a method that makes the most sense. This method could be by document type, alphabetically or chronologically.  

A finding aid is a document that provides a description of a collection and its contents. It includes:
  1. collection size
  2. content list
  3. historical background 
  4. any restrictions that may exist for the collection
Types of Archives
  1. College Archives
  2. Government Archives
  3. Business Archives
  4. Museums
  5. Historical Societies
What are Archivists

The Tasks of an Archivist
  1. Save and Acquire Records: Archivists are responsible to save and obtain records of historical significance.
  2. Organize Records: Archivists organize records to allow documents to be found within a collection.
  3. Disclose Records to the Public: Archivists make records available to the public through the use of finding aids and websites.
  4. Provide Reference Assistance: Archivists provide patrons with information about the records contained in their archives.
Archivists' Code of Ethics

(Society of American Archivists approval given in February 2005 and revised January 2012.)
  1. Professional Relationship: Archivists are fair and honest when dealing with other information professionals, researcher and donors.
  2. Judgement: Archivists must use their judgement when appraising, acquiring and processing collections. This is done to preserve documents and validate their authenticity.
  3. Authenticity: Archivists try to ensure that the records under their care are not tampered with or corrupted. This is done to promote the continued use of records in their care.
  4. Security and Protection: Archivists attempt to protect all the records in their care from damage, theft and vandalism.
  5. Access and Use: Archivists encourage the fair access of the materials in their care.
  6. Privacy: Archivists devise policies that protect the personal information of donors and institutions that may be in the records they care for.
  7. Trust: Archivists should not abuse their position and control over historic documents that patrons may consult in the course of their research.
  See also: American Historical Association and Society of American Archivists
Drexel University. “The Basics: Frequently Asked Questions About Archives.”
http://archives.library.drexel.edu/basicsfaq 2012.

Harvard University. “Frequently Asked Questions.”
http://hul.harvard.edu/huarc/faq.shtml (Last Modified June 26, 2009).

O'Toole, James M. and Richard J. Cox. Understanding Archives and Manuscripts. Chicago: Society of American Archivists, 2006.

Pugh, Mary Jo. Providing Reference Services for Archives and Manuscripts. Chicago:  Society of American Archivists, 2005.

Schmidt, Laura. Using Archives: A Guide to Effective Research. Society of American Archivists, 2011.  http://www2.archivists.org/sites/all/files/UsingArchives_Final.pdf (accessed October 7, 2014).

Society of American Archivists. "A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology." http://www2.archivists.org/glossary (accessed on October 17, 2014).
Society of American Archivists.  "SAA Core Values Statement and Code of Ethics." http://www2.archivists.org/statements/saa-core-values-statement-and-code-of-ethics (accessed October 7, 2014).
Types of Sources: Primary
Primary Sources

Primary sources are useful because they offer an original viewpoint on an event from a person who was there. Primary sources offer insight into why events occurred or why a person made a particular decision at a given point in time. Be aware that primary sources can be prone to biases or present inaccurate information.

  1. NewspapersEpilogue, 1948
  2. Newsreels
  3. Oral Histories
  4. Maps
  5. Blueprints
  6. Autobiographies
  7. Records of Court Proceedings
  8. Speeches
  9. Church Records
  10. Business Records
  11. Correspondences
  12. Interviews
  13. Websites (in some cases)
  14. Artifacts
  15. Scholarly Journal Articles (in some cases)
Types of Sources: Secondary
Secondary Sources

Secondary sources, based on primary sources, are useful because they expose the researcher to other people's viewpoints on a given event or person. They also provide the researcher with the names, dates and events related to a topic.

  1. Monographs
  2. Scholarly Journal Articles (in some cases)
  3. Second-Hand Accounts of an Event
  4. Biographies
  5. Documentaries
  6. Websites (in some cases)
Drexel University. “The Basics: Frequently Asked Questions About Archives.”
http://archives.library.drexel.edu/basicsfaq 2012.

Harvard University. “Frequently Asked Questions.”
http://hul.harvard.edu/huarc/faq.shtml (Last Modified June 26, 2009).

Society of American Archivists. "A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology." http://www2.archivists.org/glossary (accessed on October 17, 2014).

St. Mary's University of Minnesota. "Primary vs. Secondary Sources."  http://www2.smumn.edu/deptpages/tclibrary/tutorials/finding/primary.php (accessed October 7, 2014).
Steps to Research
The steps below are designed to aid in the research process by providing a method through which information can be found and studied.
  1. Conduct background research on the topic: To gain a sense of the names, places and dates related to the event or person(s) under study. Secondary sources can also be used to identify primary sources.
  2. Determine which archives are most likely to contain relevant information. This involves:Emmanuel Students, 1960-1961
    • Viewing the websites and databases of potential archives. Visit the Search for Primary Documents Page for suggested sources.
    • Reviewing the finding aids of relevant collections.
    • Contacting the archive's staff for further information.
  3.  Plan a visit to the archive. This involves:
    • Reviewing the archive's website to determine when the archive is open.
    • Alerting the staff when you are coming and informing them of the collection you wish to view. Some collections are stored off site and it may take several days for the collection to arrive at the archives for your viewing. Also ascertain if the collection you want to view is on display or is on loan to another institution. Contact the archivist if you are unable to keep your appointment.
    • Determining if there is a limit on the amount of materials you can view at once, as this could affect the amount of time you need for your research.
    • You may want to schedule time for unexpected circumstances.
  4. Guidelines when visiting archives: 
    • Registration: Researchers are asked to complete application forms that aid the archives in learning about patrons and their research topics. Photo ID may be required.
    • Storage of coats and bags:  If a public coat rack or closet is all that is available (versus individual lockers) be sure to place all valuables in your pocket(s). The use of laptops, tablets and cameras is at the discretion of the archives.
    • No food or drink: This is a prohibition used by archives to ensure documents are not damaged from accidential spills. It also discourages bugs and rodents from infesting the archives.
    • Use of pencil: Archivists require pencil when working with documents in case accidental marks are made on primary sources.
    • Request Forms: These forms are used to request material in an archives because (unlike in most libraries) patrons will not be allowed into the archival stacks. These forms will help the archivists retrieve the correct collection and box(s). 
    • Maintain order and handle carefully: Archivists ask that materials are kept in the order in which they are present in the containers as this helps preserve the content and context of the archival materials. In addition, archives request that researchers carefully handle the documents that they view as this will aid in the preservation of the documents for future users.
  5. When viewing archival materials relevant to the topic:
    • Read the materials and take notes on important concepts, viewpoints and ideas. If allowed, transcribe or photograph the document(s) if you wish. Interpret the information you find within the context of your background research.
    • Organize your notes and be sure to write down the collection name, box and folder numbers of the documents you review. You may need to cite and/or refer to the documents at a later date.
Drexel University. “The Basics: Frequently Asked Questions About Archives.”
http://archives.library.drexel.edu/basicsfaq 2012.

Harvard University. “Frequently Asked Questions.”
http://hul.harvard.edu/huarc/faq.shtml (Last Modified June 26, 2009).

Heck, Barbara, Elizabeth Preston and Bill Svec. "A Survival Guide to Archival Research." Perspectives on History, American Historical Association, December, 2004. http://www.historians.org/publications-and-directories/perspectives-on-history/december-2004/a-survival-guide-to-archival-research (accessed October 8, 2014).

Koford, Amelia. University of Texas at Austin, Center for Women and Gender Studies. "Tutorial for Archival Research on Women's Human Rights." https://liberalarts.utexas.edu/cwgs/special/echri/archival-research-tutorial/index.php (accessed October 7, 2014).

National Archives and Records Administration. "Getting Started Overview." http://www.archives.gov/research/start/ (accessed October 8, 2014). 

Schmidt, Laura. Using Archives: A Guide to Effective Research. Society of American Archivists, 2011.  http://www2.archivists.org/sites/all/files/UsingArchives_Final.pdf (accessed October 7, 2014).

Society of American Archivists. "A Glossary of Archival and Records Terminology." http://www2.archivists.org/glossary (accessed on October 17, 2014).
Researching Historiographies
General Information about Historiography General Considerations
  • Who are the major historians for your topic?
  • How can these historians be organized into schools of approach or methodology?
  • How has the historiography of your topic evolved over time?
  • How did the various historians explore the topic through a political, social, or economic lens?
Example searches:
  • historiography "French Revolution"
  • historians "Mao Zedong"

Example searches:
  • historiography and "Australia"
  • historians and "Slave Tade"
  • “historiographical-evolution” and "Aztecs"
  • Additionally, conduct searches on the topic (e.g., "French Revolution") and note who is cited in the bibliography.
Recommended databases:

Restricted Resource = Emmanuel Faculty, Staff & Students only

Searching Archives

Archive Grid
Contains over 3 million records from over 1,000 institutions that cover historic documents. Archive Grid aids in the search of primary sources.

Library of Congress
Explore the Digital collections.

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) Research Page
Links to research tools available through the National Archives.

Historical Newspapers Online
"Website directory of U.S. historical newspapers organized by state. Van Pelt Library, University of Pennsylvania."

Newspaper Archives/Indexes/Morgues
Website directory for both international and U.S. news archive resources. Library of Congress.

NewspaperCat: Catalog of Historical Newspapers
"[A] tool that facilitates the discovery of online digitized historical newspaper content from newspapers published in the United States and the Caribbean." George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida

Search for content available in libraries around the world. It aids in locating printed primary and secondary sources.

Online Primary Sources

Primary Source Databases and Websites

American Archives: Documents of the American Revolution, 1774-1776
Northern Illinois University Libraries

American History 1493-1945 Restricted Resource
Module 1: Settlement, Commerce, Revolution and Reform: 1493-1859 Sources from the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, New York. Contains books, diaries, correspondence, newspapers, photographs, military documents, pamphlets, broadsides and other ephemera. “The majority of the collection is unique manuscript. It is an extensive resource for scholars, educators and students and is considered one of the finest archives for material on the revolutionary, early national, antebellum and civil war eras.”  Module 2: Civil War, Reconstruction and the Modern Era: 1860-1945 Includes documents on slavery, the Civil War, and secession.

American Indian Histories and Cultures Restricted Resource
Contains manuscripts, artwork, photographs, rare printed books, and maps related to the historical and personal stories of the colonization of the Americas from early contacts between European settlers and American Indians  to the modern era, and “told against the backdrop of the 19th century expansion into the ‘Western Frontier’ right through to the civil rights movement of the mid-twentieth century.” Sources from the Edward E. Ayer Collection at The Newberry Library, Chicago.

American Presidency Project
Contains more than 100,000 documents "related to the study of the Presidency."  John Woolley and Gerhard Peters,  University of California, Santa Barbara.

American Slavery Debate: Revolution and Abolition in Haiti, 1791-1865
Office of Resources for International and Area Studies (ORIAS) at the University of California, Berkeley 

Archives of American Art
Includes all of the Archives of American Art records. Provides access to primary sources that document American visual arts. Sources from the Smithsonian Institution, Washington, D.C.

The Avalon Project at the Yale Law School:Documents in Law, History and Diplomacy
Browse by century or document collection. The text comparison feature allows readers to view two versions of the same documents simultaneously. Maintained on Yale Law School's Lillian Goldman Law Library web site.

Black Abolitionist Archive
A collection of speeches and editorials from the antislavery movement. Some items in the collection are available in mp3 format. University of Detroit Mercy.

British History Online
British History Online is the digital library containing some of the core printed primary and secondary sources for the medieval and modern history of the British Isles. Created by the Institute of Historical Research and the History of Parliament Trust, it aims to support academic and personal users around the world in their learning, teaching and research. (Covers 11th – 19th centuries)

Brown Digital Repository
Provides access to primary resources produced via the scholarly, instructional, research, and administrative activities at Brown. Providence, RI.

"University of California's free public gateway"" to primary documents ""selected from the libraries and museums of the UC campuses" and their partners statewide.

"America's First Immigration Center." Search passenger records from 1820 through 1913. The Battery Conservancy.

Center for Human Rights Documentation and Research
"[T]he official repository for the archives of major human rights organizations such as Amnesty International USA, the Committee of Concerned Scientists,  Human Rights First, and Human Rights Watch." Columbia University Libraries.

A Century of Lawmaking for a New Nation: U.S. Congressional Documents and Debates 1774-1875
Includes Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, Statutes and Documents, Journals of Congress, and Debates of Congress. Library of Congress.

Contagion: Historical Views of Diseases and Epidemics (Open Collections Program, Harvard University Library)
Digitized historical, manuscript, and image resources selected from Harvard University’s libraries, archives, and special collections that contribute to the understanding of the global, social–history, and public–policy implications of diseases and offer important historical perspectives on the science and the public policy of epidemiology today.

The Complete Works of Charles Darwin Online
Explore Complete Publications, Private Papers & Manuscripts, and Supplementary Works, which includes a bibliography of works cited. Darwin Online project  was founded by Dr. John van Wyhe, University of Cambridge.

Credo, Special Collections and University Archives
Collections include the "Horace Mann Bond Papers" and "W. E. B. Du Bois Papers."  University of Massachusetts, Amherst.

The Decisive Day is Come: the Battle of Bunker Hill
Includes eyewitness accounts of the Battle of Bunker Hill, a timeline of events, contemporary maps, and more. Massachusetts Historical Society.

Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project
Created to "preserve the testimonies of Japanese Americans who were unjustly incarcerated during World War II before their memories are extinguished," Densho maintains a Learning Center, a multimedia Densho Encyclopedia, and a digital archive of primary sources (video oral histories and historical images); the latter requires free registration.

Digital Archive of the Documents on Japanese Foreign Policy
Note: Use Google Translate to navigate the page. Supplied English translation will take you to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Japan home page and not a search page.

Digital Collections, Columbia University Library
Offers access to “photographs, posters, drawings, objects, ephemera, and manuscripts as well as other archival material from Columbia's rare and special collections.” New York, NY.

Digital Collections, Harvard University
Access botanical studies primary resource materials such as, specimen databases, images, and other links.

Digital Collections, University of Washington Libraries

Digital Collections, Yale University Library

Digital Collections, UC Berkeley Library
Includes much of US Berkeley Library’s archival materials, as well as “born digital” materials, hosted through Calisphere.

ULS Digital Collections
An array of primary source materials covering both the humanities and the sciences from the University Library System (ULS), University of Pittsburgh.

Digital Collections, Duke University Libraries
The digital collections of Duke University Libraries provides access to a growing collection of their archival materials, including both Full Text and Images.

Early Americas Digital Archive
Gateway to primary source material “written in or about the Americas from 1492 to approximately 1820.” Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH), University of Maryland, College Park.

Eighteenth Century Collections Online
Full-text, searchable primary documents from the 18th century; over 180,000 titles: books, pamphlets, essays, broadsides and other material in all subject areas, published in the UK and elsewhere. Includes an image gallery.

Ellis Island – Free Port of New York Passenger Records Search
Search passenger records from 1892 through 1924. Requires free registration to access the passenger records. The Statue of Liberty-Ellis Island Foundation, Inc.

EuroDocs: Primary Historical Documents From Western Europe, Selected Transcriptions, Facsimiles and Translations
Directory of internet sites. Richard Hacken, European Studies Bibliographer, Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah, USA.

Family Search
Search by name, with the option to filter by criteria including location, record type, or year of birth, death, or marriage. Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints.

First World War Digital Poetry Archive
"An online repository of over 7000 items of text, images, audio, and video for teaching, learning, and research. The heart of the archive consists of collections of highly valued primary material from major poets of the period, including Wilfred Owen, Isaac Rosenberg, Robert Graves, Vera Brittain, and Edward Thomas." University of Oxford.

French Revolution Digital Archive
"The French Revolution Digital Archive (FRDA) is a multi-year collaboration of the Stanford University Libraries and the Bibliothèque nationale de France (BnF) to produce a digital version of the key research sources of the French Revolution and make them available to the international scholarly community."

French Revolution Pamphlets
Digital Media Repository, Ball State University Libraries

The General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
To find a specific Chapter or Section number of Massachusetts General laws use the The General Court of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts: Search General Laws page.

Hillsborough Independent Panel
This site discloses documents related to the Hillsborough sporting disaster of April 15, 1989.

History of France Primary Documents: France: 1789 - 1871
Harold B. Lee Library, Brigham Young University

Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930 (Open Collections Program, Harvard University Library)
Digitized historical materials and image resources exploring immigration to the United States between 1789 and 1930. Materials selected from Harvard University's library, museum, and archive collections.

Internet Archive
Search for Vital Records and [Town or City] and limit to Texts.

The Living Room Candidate: Presidential Campaign Commercials 1952-2012
"[A]n online exhibition presenting more than 300 television commercials from every election year since 1952, when the first campaign TV ads aired." Museum of the Moving Image.

The Making of America (MOA)
"Digital library of primary sources in American social history from the antebellum period through reconstruction."  Cornell University. See also University of Michigan's Making of America.

The Mark Twain Papers & Project
Select marktwainproject.org to search for letters, writings and images. Also, explore the Online Exhibitions in the left drop down menu. The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley.

Massachusetts Digital Commonwealth
"Digital Commonwealth is a Web portal and fee-based repository service for online cultural heritage materials held by Massachusetts libraries, museums, historical societies, and archives."

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA): DOCTEACH
A selection of thousands of documents held by the National Archives and Records Administration that cover the period from 1754 to the present.

National Historical Geographic Information System
"[P]rovides population, housing, agricultural, and economic data, along with GIS-compatible boundary files, for geographic units in the United States from 1790 to the present."

New York State Archives: Digital Collections
Collections and images from the New York State Archives, NYS Museum, NYS Library.

The Newberry Publications and Digital Resources
The Newberry is a "world-renowned independent research library in Chicago."

Princeton University Digital Library
Princeton, NJ.

Primary Documents in American History: The American Revolution and The New Nation, 1775-1815
Resource Type: Web Site Library of Congress

Rare Books & Manuscripts Department Collection
Boston Public Library.

Library Catalog Digital Collections
Cornell University Library

Religion and the Founding of the American Republic
Library of Congress exhibition of manuscripts, letters, prints, and more exploring the role of religion in early American history.

September 11 Digital Archive
Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media, George Mason University and American Social History Project, City University of New York Graduate Center.

State Library of Massachusetts Digital Collections
The State Library of Massachusetts supports the research and information needs of government, libraries, and people through innovative services and access to a comprehensive repository of state documents and other historical items.

Statistical Abstract of the United States, 1789 - 2012
Contains "statistics on the social, political, and economic organization of the United States." Continues annually as ProQuest Statistical Abstract of the United States, beginning with 2013.   REFERENCE HA 202 .S73  [Check Availability]

The Statistical Abstract: Law Enforcement, Courts, & Prisons
See Section 5: Law Enforcement, Courts, & Prisons. U.S. Census Bureau.

The Thomas A. Edison Papers Project
Text and images covering Edison's career and inventions. Best viewed with Internet Explorer or Firefox. Sponsored by Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey, the National Park Service, the New Jersey Historical Commission, and the Smithsonian Institution.

Thomas Jefferson Digital Archive
University of Virginia Library.

Vietnam Center and Archive
"[C]ollects and preserves the documentary record of the Vietnam War, and supports and encourages research and education regarding all aspects of the American Vietnam Experience." Texas Tech University.

The Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database
Explore the Voyages Database, Assessing the Slave Trade interactive estimates page, and the African Names Database. Sponsored by the National Endowment for the Humanities, W.E.B. Du Bois Institute (Harvard University), and Emory University.

The Valley of the Shadow
Documents and images detailing the Civil War experience of one Union and one Confederate community at opposite ends of the Shenandoah Valley. Parts of the site are searchable. Maintained by Edward L. Ayers, Professor of History at the University of Virginia.

Witness to the Early American Experience
"The digital images of historical documents in this archive preserve the words of hundreds of eyewitnesses to the American Revolution in and around New York City." New York University Libraries and New-York Historical Society.

Women Working, 1800-1930 (Open Collections Program, Harvard University Library)
Digitized historical, manuscript, and image resources selected from Harvard University's library and museum collections that explore women's roles in the US economy between the beginning of the nineteenth century and the Great Depression.


Library of Congress: Map Collections
Library of Congress.

Charting North America: Maps from the Lawrence H. Slaughter Collection and Others
Digital Gallery, New York Public Library.

Harvard Map Collection: Digital Maps

Norman B. Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library
The Boston Public Library's map and atlas collection surpasses 200,000 physical items. The Digital Collections portal grants access to over 8,000 digitized maps from all over the world dating from the 15th century.

Maps Etc.: An online service of Florida's Educational Technology Clearinghouse
Resource Type: Web SiteBrowse Galleries or Search Database for "over 5,000 maps representing many different time periods."Florida Center for Instructional Technology, College of Education, University of South Florida.

Perry-Castañeda Library Map Collection
University of Texas Austin.

Contemporary Newspapers

Arts and Letters Daily, a service of The Chronicle of Higher Education
Provides essays on criticism, philosophy, aesthetics, literature, language ideas, culture, music and art.

Boston Business Journal Restricted Resource
Includes business newspapers specific to 39 other areas of the U.S.

Boston Globe from Proquest (1980 - present) Restricted Resource
Text-only articles, no page reproductions.  Does not inlcude content such as advertisements, charts, classified ads, graphs, most images, and non-staff written items.  Content is updated daily by 8 a.m.

Christian Science Monitor (1995 - present)

New York Times (1980-present) Restricted Resource

The Pilot

ProQuest US Newsstream Restricted Resource
National and local newspapers, newswires, blogs, and news sites' transcripts including U.S. major dailies, CNN, Meet the Press and hundred's more. Current coverage and back files will vary.

Regional Business News Restricted Resource
Regional U.S. and Canadian business publications; some foreign coverage.

Wall Street Journal, Eastern Edition (1984 - present) Restricted Resource

Historical Newspapers

Boston Globe Archive (1872-1987) Restricted Resource
Courtesy of the BPL. Requires a BPL e-card. Sign up for one at https://www.bpl.org/ecard/
Note: Scroll down to Historical Newspapers section

Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers
Options include All Digitized Newspaper Pages from 1789 to 1963 and U.S. Newspaper Directory, 1690 - Present.  Library of Congress
Note: Scroll down to Historical Newspapers section

ProQuest Historical Newspapers Restricted Resource
This collection of historical newspapers includes: The Hartford Courant (1764-1993); The New York Times (1851-2015); The New York Tribune (1841-1922); The Wall Street Journal (1889-2002); The Washington Post (1877-2002)

New York Times Archive (1851-2015) through ProQuest Restricted Resource
Full-text and full-page images of the New York Times from the newspaper's first issue. 

Wall Street Journal Archive (1889 - 2002) Restricted Resource

Washington Post Archive (1877- 2002) Restricted Resource

U.S. Presidential Libraries

George H. W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
College Station, TX.

George W. Bush Presidential Library and Museum
Dallas, TX.

Jimmy Carter Library & Museum
Atlanta, GA.

William J. Clinton Presidential Library and Museum
Little Rock, AR.

Calvin Coolidge Presidential Library and Museum
Northampton, MA.

Dwight D. Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum
Abilene, KS.

Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and Museum
Grand Rapids, MI.

Herbert Hoover Presidential Library and Museum
West Branch, IA.

LBJ (Lyndon Baines Johnson) Presidential Library
Austin, TX.

John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum
Use the Library's internal search engine to find unabridged files and explore the interactive exhibits: Boston, MA.

Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum
Springfield, IL.

William McKinley Presidential Library and Museum
Canton, OH.

Nixon Presidential Library & Museum
College Park, MD.

Ronald Reagan Library & Museum
Simi Valley, CA.

Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum
Hyde Park, NY.

Harry S. Truman Presidential Library & Museum
Independence, MO.

Woodrow Wilson Presidential Library & Museum
Staunton, VA.


American History in Video Restricted Resource
Provides the largest and richest collection of video available online for the study of American history, with 2,000 hours and more than 5,000 titles on completion.

A collection of government hearing, speeches and ceremonies from around the world with a particular emphasis on the United States. Also included are C-SPAn produced documentaries.

Internet Archive: Moving Image Archive
"[C]ontains digital movies uploaded by Archive users which range from classic full-length films, to daily alternative news broadcasts, to cartoons and concerts."
  • Feature Film Collection of more than 3,900 films in the public domain, searchable by title, topic, genre, publication date
  • LibriVox Free Audiobook Collection of more than 8,700 audio books, searchable
  • Live Music Archive, more than 147,000 items browsable by year, artist, publication date
  • Old Time Radio, more than 2,400 historical radio programs, searchable by title, topic, date

Open Vault
Access material created by WGBH for television and radio.

See also: Research Guide History  and the College Online Catalog for further resorces.