SBS 363 Library Guide

Historical Methods

Research process

Information Literacy Tutorials for U.S. Histories & Democratic Participation:

Peer Review & Primary/Secondary Sources Tutorial

This tutorial will introduce you to the peer review process and how it contributes to the reliability of knowledge. You will also learn to recognize the structure of typical scholarly journal articles and learn to distinguish between primary historical evidence and secondary historical sources.

Using Library Databases & Evaluating Sources Tutorial

This tutorial will help you learn how to search for and retrieve relevant, peer-reviewed sources on a research topic. You will learn to choose relevant library databases and combine keywords and synonyms to develop a search strategy. You will evaluate information sources using several important criteria to help you establish the credibility of the source and its author(s).

Additional help on specific topics, or related to specific CSUMB courses is available via:

How Do I ...

"How Do I ..." provides help on how to look for and use various library resources and services.

Course Guides

This link provides access to an index of web pages related to Library Instruction and library resources for specific courses at CSUMB.

Durable / Persistent / Stable Links

Links to Books and E-books

The catalog record for each item in the CSUMB Library Catalog displays a URL toward the bottom labeled "Persistent Link to this Record." Right click on that link and copy the link address.

If you want to link directly to an E-book, go to the record in the CSUMB Library Catalog, right-click on the link labeled "Electronic version of this book" and copy the link address.

Links to Articles

Follow these instructions and tips for creating or finding durable links to the full-text of articles in library databases.

Ask a librarian

Eddy Hogan, Coordinator of Collection Development, is the Library's liaison to Social, Behavioral & Global Studies. Once your senior capstone project has been approved, you may request a one-on-one, in-person consultation with Mr. Hogan to explore relevant information resources. Pre-capstone research assistance from a librarian is available in a variety of ways.

See also

See also the CSUMB Library's research guides on: Anthropology & Archaeology, Business, California & Local History, Ethnic & Cultural Studies, Economics, Education, Gender Studies, Geographic Information Systems, Government Information, History, Media Studies & Journalism, News & Current Events, Political Science and Law, Psychology, Public Policy, Social Work, Sociology & Social Issues, and Statistical Information.


Books in the CSUMB Library

Use the links below for quick lists of books and videos on:



oral history

primary sources in history

Books at other libraries

MOBAC Monterey Bay Regional Libraries - search library catalogs in the Monterey Bay region

Melvyl - search library catalogs of the University of California

WorldCat - search library catalogs from around the world.

CSUMB students, faculty and staff may use the ILLiad Interlibrary Loan Request Form to borrow books found using the catalogs above.

Reference E-books

American Decades, 2000-2009. 2011

Ancient Europe 8000 B.C. to A.D. 1000: Encyclopedia of the Barbarian World. 2003

Concise Encyclopedia of the Great Recession, 2007-2010. 2010

Constitutional Amendments: An Encyclopedia. 2012

Dictionary of American History. 2003

Encyclopedia of African History. 2004

Encyclopedia of American Disability History. 2009

Encyclopedia of European Migration and Minorities From the Seventeenth Century to the Present. 2011

Encyclopedia of Latin American History and Culture. 2008

Encyclopedia of Middle East Wars: The United States in the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, and Iraq Conflicts. 2010

Encyclopedia of Russian History. 2004

Encyclopedia of Social Movement Media. 2011

Encyclopedia of the American Indian Movement. 2013

Encyclopedia of the Great Depression. 2004

Encyclopedia of the Mexican-American War. 1999

Encyclopedia of the Sixties: A Decade of Culture and Counterculture. 2012

The Encyclopedia of the Vietnam War: A Political, Social, and Military History. 2011

Encyclopedia of Twentieth Century African History. 2002

Europe 1450 to 1789: Encyclopedia of the Early Modern World. 2004

Gale Encyclopedia of U.S. Economic History. 1999

New Dictionary of the History of Ideas. 2005

Oxford Encyclopedia of the Civil War. 2011

The Renaissance: An Encyclopedia for Students. 2003

Revolts, Protests, Demonstrations, and Rebellions in American History: An Encyclopedia. 2011

Social History of Crime and Punishment in America: An Encyclopedia. 2012

St. James Encyclopedia of Labor History Worldwide. 2004

What Happened?: An Encyclopedia of Events That Changed America Forever. 2011

See also

See also the CSUMB Library's guides on: Finding Primary Sources and Citing Your Sources.


Find articles

Databases That Focus on Topics in History

America: History & Life - U.S. and Canadian history

Historical Abstracts - world history

JSTOR Retrospective Journal Collection - anthropology, archaeology, area studies, economics, education, geography, history, political science, sociology, statistics

Opposing Viewpoints Resource Center - viewpoint articles and topic overviews on social issues

Project Muse - humanities, including history

Sage Journals - social sciences, including history

Interdisciplinary Databases

Academic OneFile - useful for all topics

Academic Search Premier (Ebsco) - useful for all topics

Dissertations in Full Text - including history

Google Scholar - indexes a large proportion of the scholarly literature in a wide range of research areas

Reference and Statistical Databases

CountryWatch - information, data and news on all countries

International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences - abstracts only, see Ref H41.I58 2001 for text

New York Times Historical (1851-2009)

RAND California - statistical information on California economic and public policy issues

See also

See also the CSUMB Library's guides on: Distinguishing Scholarly Journals from Other Periodicals, Find Journals by Title, and How to Cite Electronic & Print Resources.

Archives & websites

Local historical collections and archives

Colton Hall Museum

351 Pacific, Monterey

(831) 646-5640

Materials pertaining to 1849 California Constitutional Convention, Monterey City records, other files on Monterey history. Colton Hall materials have been cataloged by Monterey Public Library, and are now included in the MPL online catalog.

Henry Meade Williams Local History Department

Harrison Memorial Library Park Branch Corner Mission and 6th, Carmel

(831) 624-1615

Books, photos, periodicals, ephemera, manuscripts and other items dealing with the history of Carmel-by-the-Sea and the Monterey Peninsula. Free lecture series every winter-spring. Non-circulating collection.

Monterey County Agricultural & Rural Life Museum

San Lorenzo Park

1160 Broadway King City, CA 93930

(831) 385-8020

Buildings, artifacts and historical materials depict the history of agriculture in Monterey County from the late 19th century on.

Monterey County Free Libraries - Administrative Offices & Californiana collection

188 Seaside CircleMarina, CA 93933

(831) 883-7573

Extensive collection of books, photographs, other materials on California and Monterey County history. Note: collection has been dispersed to branch libraries. Call for information on specific materials.

Monterey County Historical Society - Boronda Adobe History Center

333 Boronda Rd., Salinas

(831) 757-8085

Collection includes photographs, newspapers, and municipal and county court records. Extensive subject and surname files on Monterey County pioneer families.

Monterey Public Library

625 Pacific at Madison, Monterey


California History Room

Numerous books, magazine articles, maps, photographs and other historical resources pertaining to the City of Monterey, and the Monterey Peninsula. Long runs of California History/California Historical Society Quarterly, with indexes. Noncirculating; to use materials, sign in and leave ID at the reference desk. Extensive clipping file from local newspapers, through 1994; index to Monterey County Herald from 1995 on is available via their online catalog.

National Steinbeck Center Museum

1 Main St., Salinas

(831) 796-3833

Archives and museum celebrating the life and works of John Steinbeck. Call for appointment to use Steinbeck archives, which contain over 30,000 items including rare editions, manuscripts, correspondence, periodical articles, scripts, posters, photographs, recordings, films, newspaper clippings, biographical material, criticisms and memorabilia.

Pacific Grove Heritage Society - Ketchum's Barn, Laurel Ave. & 17th St.

Pacific Grove,

CA P.O. Box 1007, Pacific Grove, CA 93950

(831) 372-2898

Collections consist of historical materials, documents, photos, and oral histories pertaining primarily to Pacific Grove.

Salinas Public Library

350 Lincoln, Salinas


Extensive local history clipping files and collections of photos, family histories, newspapers and other materials. Some oral histories available online on website Salinas Stories.

San Benito County Historical Society Museum

498 Fifth St.


(831) 637-5315

Indexed oral history collection with some transcriptions; surname and historical subject files. Museum houses vital records, photographs, and artifacts related to San Benito County history, including some materials on the Steinbeck family.

Many other local history archives are described in the Monterey County Local History Directory.

Local history sites

California Views

The Pat Hathaway Historical Photo Collection, established in 1970, this archive of historical photographs focuses on Monterey and the Central Coast.

Cannery Row Foundation

The purpose of this non-profit organization is to perserve and foster historical study and interest in Cannery Row, located in Monterey.

Costanoan-Ohlone Indian Canyon Resource

Provides historical, cultural and political information relevant to the region. Images, video and audio files are provided.

Fort Ord Historical Images

Collection digitized by the CSUMB Library, located on the Online Archive of California website

Local History Links

On the Monterey Public Library's California History Room website.

Monterey County Local History Directory

Hosted on Monterey County Free Libraries website, descriptions of many local archives and collections

Ohlone/Costanoan Esselen Nation

This site has information about the name, homelands, history, and current status of "The First People of the Monterey Bay Area, California."

Santa Cruz Public Libraries Local History Site

More than 240 articles on Santa Cruz County history are available on this site, plus more than 400 full-text, local newspaper accounts. Many of the articles are illustrated with historical photographs.

UCSC Library Regional History Project

The Regional History Project has been documenting the history of the Central Coast of California and the institutional history of UC Santa Cruz since 1963, through oral history. This Web site includes the complete catalog of the collection, a photo gallery of historical images of the Central Coast of California, Oral History resources, and links to other oral history sites on the Internet.

California history sites

African Americans in California

From the Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley, this site features a searchable catalog of Bancroft's holdings of materials by and about African Americans, with an emphasis on items relating to California and the West. Also includes a timeline and links to related sites.

Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley

Rich, heavily used special collection on California history. Information on collections, hours, access. Descriptive information on specific items in the collection is available electronically and some materials have been digitized (see California Heritage links, below), but most materials must be viewed onsite.

"California As I Saw It": First-Person Narratives of California's Early Years, 1849-1900

From the American Memory Collection of the Library of Congress: full texts and illustrations of 190 works documenting the formative era of California's history through eyewitness accounts.

California Historical Society

Links to information on events, publications, exhibits, and the collections of the North Baker Research Library. Listing of historical agencies and museums by county.

California Missions Foundation

The Foundation is the only statewide organization dedicated to the preservation and study of the California Missions and their related historical sites. It merged with the California Mission Studies Association in 2016. Website includes annual reports and an archive of the Foundation's quarterly electronic newsletter, Correo.

California Pioneer Project

Part of the California Genealogy Web websites (, the California Pioneer List is a listing of settlers who migrated to or were born in California prior to 1880.

California State Archives

Information about early California land grants, documents and other records, including those stored at the former capital, Monterey.

California State Historic Landmarks

From the California Office of Historic Preservation, a listing by county of historic places and landmarks.


The University of California's gateway to thousands of digitized primary source items that "reveal the diverse history and culture of California."

The Chinese in California, 1850-1925

Maintained by the Bancroft Library, this online compilation illustrates nineteenth and early twentieth century Chinese immigration to California through about 8,000 images and pages of primary source materials.

CSU Long Beach Virtual Oral/Aural History Archive

A searchable collection of oral history interviews, primarily focusing on Southern California history. Listen to segments online rather than reading transcripts.

Early Arrivals Records Search (EARS)

This database, a joint project of UC Berkeley and NARA, covers investigations of people who tried to immigrate to America via San Francisco during the period of the Chinese Exclusion Act, 1882-1943.

Early California History: an Overview

A special presentation in the "California As I Saw It" web site (see above) containing text and illustrations which summarize California history from its earliest times to the turn of the 20th century.

Echoes of Freedom: South Asian Pioneers in California, 1899-1965

An illustrated history of early Indian immigrants to California, featuring photographs, documents, and publications from the South/Southeast Asia Library at UC Berkeley.

Gold Fever! The Lure and Legacy of the California Gold Rush, at the Oakland Museum

A virtual tour of the Oakland Museum's exhibition which chronicles the impact of the 1848 Gold Rush on California's economy, population, environment and cultural diversity. Contains a special section on the Native American, Californio, and immigrant experience of the Gold Rush.

H-California Internet Resources for California History

A major section of the H-California web site which lists Internet resources on California history.H-California Network ( is an international electronic discussion group for scholars and teachers of historical demography.

Japanese American Relocation Digital Archives (JARDA)

From the California Digital Library, this project indexes the holdings of several California repositories which document the experience of Japanese Americans in World War II internment camps. Includes over 10,000 digital images and over 20,000 pages of electronic transcriptions of documents and oral histories.

Land of Golden Dreams: California in the Gold Rush Decade 1848-1858

This Web presentation of the Huntington Library's remarkable collection of Gold Rush manuscripts, drawings, and rare printed materials allows the people involved to tell their own true stories and bring this unique event to life.

Online Archive of California

Part of the California Digital Library, this site contains online inventories, registers, indexes, or guides to collections held by major California archives and manuscript repositories, libraries and museums.

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