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Yale Library

HIST 108J: Infrastructure and Ecosystems in Modern U.S. History: Home

This page is intended for students in Taylor Rose's seminar and provides an overview of resources in the Yale Library for your research papers this semester.

Yale Library Search Tools

The main search tools for finding books, articles, databases, archival collections, and more at Yale (and beyond) can all be found on the "Find, Request, and Use" page of the library's website. Here are a few quick refreshers, but be sure to visit the page for a full overview:

Guides to Historical Research & Writing

Resources from class meeting on September 28th

The following are the resources that were demonstrated or mentioned during the library research session on September 28th (some of them are also linked on other parts of this guide, e.g. ProQuest News and Newspapers under "Primary Source Databases," etc.):


Academic journal databases:


Historical newspaper databases:


Government documents:


Finding archival materials at Yale and beyond:


Freely available web resources:


Paleography resources:

Background resources

Background or "reference" sources are a great place to start in building your bibliographies. These are scholarly encyclopedias, handbooks, bibliographies, and similar sources that will often contain lengthy essays with background information on a topic and overviews of the relevant scholarship. Citations to the secondary literature will always be included, and often so too will citations to primary sources.


Oxford Research Encyclopedia in American History

A scholarly encyclopedia of potentially great use in the early stages of your research project. Each article has a discussion of the literature, including primary sources -- often a great starting point for finding more sources. A few examples of potentially useful articles are the following:


Oxford Research Encyclopedia of Environmental Science


The Oxford Handbook of Energy Politics

This and other Oxford Handbooks are useful sources for getting started on research projects. You will find informative overviews on topics and helpful lists of suggestions for further reading in each chapter.


Oxford Bibliographies
This is a large collection of bibliographic “articles,” each containing numerous bibliographic annotations, often of both primary and secondary sources.


The Environmental History Bibliography


Gale in Context: Environmental Studies

Secondary Sources/Subject Databases

Subject-specific databases are a key resource for finding secondary literature, including the latest scholarly journal articles in the field, and the main subject databases for finding historical literature are:

  • America: History and Life Provides historical coverage of the United States and Canada and indexes over 2000 historical journals. A key resource if you are searching for historical scholarship related to your research project.
  • Historical Abstracts Provides historical coverage of the world, not including the United States and Canada, from the 15th century to the present. Indexes thousands of journals in multiple languages.

Additional subject databases for finding scholarly literature that may be helpful are:

Searching these databases will allow you to check for the latest scholarly articles, reviews of books, citations to book chapters, and more in a wide array of historical journals. Please note: the full text of articles will not always be available in these databases. If you see the "YaleLinks" icon instead of a PDF, click on the icon to discover whether we have online access to the article.

Library contact

James Kessenides, Kaplanoff Librarian for American History, james.kessenides@yale.edu

Click here for a list of subject specialists in the Yale Library