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History: Step 3: Gathering Secondary Sources

A guide to help both history majors and students enrolled in history courses jump-start their research.


You will need your 14 digit barcode from your ID Card  in order to gain access to any journal or e-book in the library's electronic resources.


Library of Congress Classifications for History

Library Call Numbers tell us where to find books about a specific subject.  The first letters of a call number tell you the primary subject of the book and where to physically find it.  For history, you can anticipate searching under the letters D, E, and F which are all on the third floor.  For your consideration, here is the classification breakdown:

D - History, general

D-DR European History

DA - History of England

DB - History of Austria

DC - History of France

DD - History of Germany

DE - Greco-Roman history

DF- History of Greece

DG - History of Italy


DS-DX - History of Asia, Africa, Australia, New Zealand

E-F - American History

Example: DA565.F67 M94 is a book entitled At her majesty's request: an African princess in Victorian England.  If all I knew was the call number, I could guess that the subject would be the history of England.  The "DA" tells me so.

If you want to take a closer look at call number designations, check out the Library of Congress Classification outlines.


When searching for books there are three resources available to you: 

1) William C. Jason Library Catalog: You can search for books physically located in the library building by clicking here: Jason Catalog 

2) WorldCat is an online catalog shared by libraries in more than 170 countries. If you search by keyword and discover a book not held by DSU, you can submit a request for an inter-library loan and we'll work to get it to you. Simply click the blue "Request item through Inter-library loan" button underneath the item you want to borrow.  Once you submit a request, you'll typically receive the item within two weeks or less.  Check it out here: WorldCat 

3) Ebooks: You can also take advantage of access to full-text, online Ebooks through our databases. To get started, take a look at some of the ebook databases listed under "E" in the A to Z database list.  


These are recommended databases when searching for journal articles (and also ebooks):