Features full text for more than 1,620 reference books, encyclopedias and non-fiction books. Also includes full text for more than 150 periodicals, nearly 57,000 historical documents, more than 77,000 biographies; more than 113,000 historical photos and maps. Brought to you by the Library of Michigan via the Michigan eLibrary (https://mel.org).

Family history resource including more than 6 billion historical ​records from the United States, Europe, Latin America, and other regions. Includes the full USA federal census (1790-1940); census of England and Wales (1841-1901); U.S. World War II Army Enlistment as well as records of Union and Confederate Civil War soldiers. Brought to you by the Library of Michigan via the Michigan eLibrary (MeL).

Contains over 400 full-text titles from leading academic journals, monographs, related articles from major periodicals and newspapers, and over 1600 biographies of leading historical and contemporary Jews. Brought to you by the Library of Michigan via the Michigan eLibrary (https://mel.org).

Includes full text for more than 1,400 journals, with citations to over 3.5 million articles, including book reviews. Brought to you by the Library of Michigan via the Michigan eLibrary (https://mel.org).

A collection of high-quality full-text books in the humanities and social sciences. Over 4,300 titles and growing annually. 1900 to present.

Provides full text coverage for scholarly journals published in central and eastern European countries. Brought to you by the Library of Michigan via the Michigan eLibrary (https://mel.org).

LGBT Life contains full text for more than 120 of the most important and historically significant LGBT journals, magazines and regional newspapers, as well as more than 150 full-text monographs/books. The database also includes comprehensive indexing and abstract coverage as well as a specialized LGBT Thesaurus.

A comprehensive Spanish-language database including 49,000 encyclopedia entries; 50,000 images; 2,500 health reports; a Spanish-English dictionary and full text for over 100 reference books and dozens of general interest magazines. Brought to you by the Library of Michigan via the Michigan eLibrary (https://mel.org).

ProQuest Central brings together databases across major subject areas including Business, Health and Medical, Language and Literature, Social Sciences, Education, Science and Technology, as well as core titles in the Performing and Visual Arts, History, Religion, and Philosophy. Also includes thousands of full-text newspapers from around the world.

Complete, searchable, full text articles from over 2,100 core scholarly journals. 1878 to the most recent 1-5 years (varies by title).












Digital Online Primary Sources 

This page offers a list of selected internet sites that provide access to collections of digital primary source material. The page is a work in progress. 

Upper Peninsula of Michigan

Cleveland Cliffs Iron Mining Company records  (Central Upper Peninsula and NMU Archives)
This digital collection is comprised of 92 volumes of annual reports (roughly 55,000 pages), 235 maps and plans, and approximately 250 photographs. The collection documents the development of the iron mining industry in the central Upper Peninsula during the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. 

Recorded in Stone (Central Upper Peninsula and NMU Archives)
Recorded in Stone documents the history of immigration to the Marquette Iron Range in the central Upper Peninsula. The website features digital reproductions of oral histories, original documents, and photographs. The site also includes a set of summary histories of significant immigrant groups written by area scholars. 

Anatomy of a Murder (Central Upper Peninsula and NMU Archives)
Created for the 50th anniversary of the premier of the movie Anatomy of a Murder, this online exhibit includes selected digital surrogates of documents from the John Voelker papers. Documents include selections from the original 1952 murder trial and handwritten manuscripts of the novel Anatomy of a Murder.

The Keweenaw Digital Archives (MTU and Copper Country Archives)
A collection of several thousand historical photographs documenting the history of the western Upper Peninsula, particularly Keweenaw and Houghton counties. The site is currently undergoing maintenance and temporarily unavailable. 

Delta County Historical Society (Escanaba)
A database of several hundred historical documents and nearly 4,000 photographs documenting the history of Delta County, Michigan. 

Escanaba Public Library Historical Newspapers
A fantastic database of digital reproductions of historic Delta County newspapers. However, the collection is limited to editions printed in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. The collection is keyword searchable. 


Michigan Memories
Michigan Memories provides access to digital collections from archives and special collections throughout the state of Michigan. The site is a state "hub" of the Digital Public Libraries of America (DPLA) 

Seeking Michigan
This site provides access to digital surrogates of original archival records created by the state government of Michigan. The hard copy originals are maintained by the Archives of Michigan (state archives of Michigan) in Lansing. 

Digital Michigan Newspaper Portal (Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University)
A nearly comprehensive collection of historical newspapers published within the state of Michigan. The collection is alphabetically by county and city. 

Clarke Digital Collections (Clarke Historical Library, Central Michigan University)
A collection of digitized documents and publications documenting the history of Central Michigan University, the upper lower peninsula of Michigan, and the state of Michigan. Documents are searchable by keyword. 

Bentley Image Bank (Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan)
A repository of over 25,000 digital images maintained by the Bentley Historical Library. 

Polar Bear Expedition Digital Materials (Bentley Historical Library, University of Michigan)
A collection of digitized records documenting the history of Michigan soldiers who participated in the United States invasion of the Soviet Union in 1918. 

Regional History Digital Collections (Western Michigan University Archives)
A collection of records, papers, and publications documenting the history of the Kalamazoo and western Michigan region. The site includes an excellent collection of Civil War era letters and diaries. 

Digital Archives, Eastern Michigan University (EMU Archives)
A collection of digital material largely documenting the history of Eastern Michigan University.

United States

Library of Congress Digital Collections
A vast collection of digital materials document United States history.

National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)
NARA does not have a specific web page devoted to primary source material (except for Teachdocs.org). One has to search the NARA catalog and limit the search to digital material.

New York Public Library Digital Collections
A stunning collection of nearly 1 million digital records documenting the broad scope of United States history. 

Smithsonian Libraries Digital Collections
A collection of over 35,000 digital publications and historical manuscript collections. 

North Carolina Digital Heritage Center
DigitalNC is a statewide digitization and digital publishing program housed in the North Carolina Collection at the University of North Carolina's Wilson Special Collections Library. The Digital Heritage Center works with cultural heritage institutions across North Carolina to digitize and publish historic materials online.

General Digital Primary Source Websites 

Best History Websites
An excellent resource that provides links to over 1,200 internet sites with access to digital primary source material, including ancient, European, and modern history. 

Internet Modern History Sourcebook (Fordham University)
The Internet Modern History Sourcebook is one of series of history primary sourcebooks. It is intended to serve the needs of teachers and students in college survey courses in modern European history and American history, as well as in modern Western Civilization and World Cultures.

Early Modern Web
EarlyModernWeb is a cluster of websites providing access to digital resources and research concerning the early modern period (c.1500-1800 CE). The sites are maintained by Sharon Howard.


This link will take you to the site where you can download Zotero.  Zotero is a free research manager which helps you collect, organize, and manage your sources. This application works with Google Chrome, FireFox, & Safari web browsers, and integrates with word processing programs such as MS Word & Google Docs. 

Using Archives: A Guide to Effective Research (Society of American Archivists)

This guide outlines and explains the functions and procedures of archives and is designed both for first time archives users and scholars who have already conducted research in archives.

Learning to do Historical Research: A Primer

Created by Dr. William Cronon (University of Wisconsin, Madison). The site provides a basic introduction to historical research methods and the analysis and interpretation of primary sources. 


Tropy is a free software tool that allows researchers to manage digital images of research material. It is essentially a note taking program for research use in archives and special collections. 

Chicago-Style Citation Quick Guide
A brief guide with examples illustrating citations according to the the Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS). Pick from the notes and bibliography style or the author-date style (both acceptable in CMOS). There also is a sample bibliography (for the notes and bibliography style) or examples of in-text citations (for the author-date style). Links to appropriate sections of the online manual are provided throughout for more details.

Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS)
The entire 17th edition (2017) of the manual online.

CMOS Formatting and Style Guide
Written and maintained by the Purdue Online Writing Lab (OWL). The navigation to the left can be used to locate specific types of sources (books, periodicals, websites, etc.) as well as sample papers and resources that help answer common questions regarding Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS).

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