HIST 101: What you need to know

Locating Primary Sources

There are many access points to the vast collections of primary sources available to you.

Certain words and phrases will find primary sources in library catalogs.  You can use these in OskiCat or Melvyl:

advanced keyword search -correspondence
-sources
-diaries
-personal narratives
-interviews
-speeches
-documents
-archives
-early works to 1800
-newspapers

For specific search strategies, see the Library's guide to Finding Historical Primary Sources.

Your searches will be more successful if, in your preliminary research, you identify specific:

  • names of relevant individuals and organizations
  • dates of events
  • places
  • what terminology was used at the time by participants and observers? (ex:  negro or colored instead of african american)

 

  • Online Archive of California (OAC)
    A searchable and browseable resource that brings together historical materials from a variety of California institutions, including museums, historical societies, and archives. Contains over 120,000 images; 50,000 pages of documents, letters, and oral histories; and 8,000 guides to collections. Images are organized into thematic and institutional collections, such as historical topics, nature, places, and technology.
  • ArchiveGrid
    Searchable descriptions of nearly a million historical documents, personal papers, and family histories kept in libraries, museums, and archives worldwide. Includes information on how to examine and order copies.
  • Archive Finder (including ArchivesUSA and NIDS UK/Ireland)
    Directory which describes tens of thousands of collections of primary source material housed in thousands of repositories across the United States, the United Kingdom and Ireland.
  • Center for Research Libraries Online Catalog
    CRL acquires and preserves newspapers, journals, documents, archives, and other traditional and digital resources from a global network of sources. UC Berkeley Library students, faculty, and other researchers have liberal access to these rich source materials through interlibrary loan, electronic delivery, and a growing collection of digitized material.

Newspapers and Microforms Collection

If the library location in OskiCat says "Newspapers and Microforms" it is referring to the Newspapers and Microforms Collection, 40 Doe Library.

Check the hours of the unit before you go. The unit is not open on weekends, and microfilm cannot be checked out.

Be sure to bring a flash drive so you can save scanned copies of the microfilm to your disk. Scanning is free, but there is a charge for printing from the microfilm.  You MUST use your Cal1 card to pay for printing.

In the News/Micro collection, microfilm rolls and microfiche cards are shelved with their own numbering system; click here for a PDF of the collection's floorplan.

Don't hesitate to ask for help! The News/Micro staff are experts in the use of the machines.

U.S. History Microfilm Collections

World History Microfilm Collections

Newspapers on Microfilm

microfilm reel

Because of their fragility as they age, newspapers have traditionally been preserved by microfilming them.

Microfilm is located in the Newspaper and Microfilm Room in 40 Doe Library and in Bancroft Library.  Newspaper films are arranged geographically within the News/Micro collection [floorplan.pdf]

Reader/printers allow you to read the films and those in News/Micro allow you to save pages to flash drives in .jpg and .pdf format.

Most newspapers do not have indexes.  How do you find articles by subject? By knowing the approximate date of the event you are studying.  If you don't know the date, you can use the index to a different newspaper as a way to find out.

To determine whether we have microfilmed newspapers for the city or region of interest, try these search techniques in OskiCat.

SUBJECT SEARCHING: Select "Subject Heading" as the search type and enter your search using one of the structures suggested below:

African American newspapers
Mexican Americans--Illinois--Chicago--Newspapers
Warsaw (Poland) --Newspapers
Paris (France)--Newspapers

KEYWORD SEARCHING: Combine search terms with AND and OR. Use * (truncation symbol) to search for multiple word endings. For example:

newspaper* and (poland or polish)
newspaper* and mexic*
(soviet or russia*) and newspaper*

NOTE: these searches will produce results including both newspapers and books about newspapers, unless you limit your search to Newspapers/Microforms.

 

Last Update: June 03, 2014 14:47