Research Guides

A-Z Databases

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The following databases are newly acquired or being evaluated for a future subscription.
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Focusing predominantly on Atlanta, Chicago, New York, and towns and cities in North Carolina this resource presents multiple aspects of African American communities through pamphlets, periodicals, correspondence, official records, reports and in-depth oral histories.
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Featuring manuscript and early printed material, illustrated maps and documents, diaries and ships' logs, this collection highlights key events in the history of European maritime exploration from c.1420–1920.
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Primary source collections from Adam Matthew Digital spanning the 15th to 21st centuries and containing millions of pages. Collection themes include area studies, cultural studies, empire and globalism, ethnic studies, gender and sexuality, history, literature, politics, theatre, and war and conflict.
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Over 60,000 primary source documents including correspondence, diaries, government documents, business records, books, pamphlets, newspapers, broadsides, photographs, artwork and maps, documenting American history.
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Documents relating to American Indian history in the United States, Canada and Mexico, including treaties, speeches and diaries, historic maps and travel journals, and artwork.
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Nearly 200 years of Indigenous print journalism from the United States and Canada.
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Features printed books, journals, historic maps, broadsides, periodicals, advertisements, photographs, artwork and more, documenting westward expansion in America from the early-18th to the mid-20th century.
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British government files spanning 1948–1980 including previously restricted letters, diplomatic dispatches, reports, trial papers, activists’ biographies and first-hand accounts of events from the history of South Africa’s apartheid regime.
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Manuscript sources, rare printed texts, visual images, objects and maps connected to the trading and cultural relationships that emerged between China, America and the Pacific region between the 18th and early 20th centuries.
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Rare pamphlets c. 1750–1929 on China and the Chinese in the Western world, mostly in English.
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English-language primary sources relating to China and the West, 1793–1980
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Documenting missionary work from the 19th to the 21st century, the periodicals include news, journals and reports offering a unique perspective on global history and cultural encounters.
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Covering 1606 to 1822, this collection consists of the original correspondence of the American colonial governments with the British government, and addresses 17th- and 18th-century American history and the early-modern Atlantic world.
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These papers range from single-page letters or telegrams to comprehensive dispatches, investigative reports and texts of treaties, covering the modern period of European colonisation of the African continent from the British Government’s perspective.
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Documents from the British government for Central and South America and the Caribbean. Topics include slavery, immigration, relations with indigenous peoples, wars, fall of the Brazilian monarchy, business, industry, the Panama Canal, and the rise to power of populist rulers.
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Documents from the British government for United States, Canada, and English-speaking Caribbean. Topics include slavery, Prohibition, the World Wars, racial segregation, territorial disputes, League of Nations, McCarthyism and the nuclear bomb.
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Original British source material concerning history, literature, sociology and education from a gendered perspective.
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Collection of India Office Records from the British Library, containing royal charters, correspondence, trading diaries, minutes of council meetings and reports of expeditions, this resource charts the history of British trade and rule in the Indian subcontinent and beyond from 1599 to 1947.
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Over 2,500 British plays, including almost every play submitted for licence 1737-1824, with contextualizing primary source documents. Includes The London Stage 1660-1800, a database of every traceable performance with interactive data visualizations and tools for illustrating trends across years, between theatres and works performed, roles enacted and actors. Also includes Biographical Dictionary of Actors etc. 1660-1800.
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Journals printed c.1685–1835, illuminating 18th-century social, political and literary life. Topics covered include colonial life, provincial and rural affairs, the French and American revolutions, reviews of literature and fashion throughout Europe, political debates, and London coffee house gossip and discussion.
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Material in the collection spans across the globe and over five centuries, from the explorations of Columbus and other Europeans, through to de-colonisation in the second half of the 20th century and debates over American Imperialism.
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Monographs, pamphlets, periodicals and broadsides addressing 19th- and early 20th-century political, social and gender issues, religion, race, education, employment, marriage, sexuality, home and family life, health, and pastimes.
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This resource is comprised of primary source documents in four thematic modules: "Personal Experiences," "Propaganda and Recruitment," "Visual Perspectives and Narratives," and "A Global Conflict."
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British government files on events and issues dealing with China, Hong Kong and Taiwan, beginning with the overthrow of the millennia-old imperial system, heralding decades of turmoil in the region.
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British government files on events and issues in South Asia (including Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Nepal, Bhutan, Sikkim, and Maldives), from shortly before Indian partition and independence up to 1980.
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Formerly restricted British government files on events and issues dealing with Anglo-Japanese ties during a time of shifting alliances, incorporating the Taishō to the Shōwa periods.
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Including complete runs of Foreign Office files, this collection reveals the UK’s exhaustive interest in the Middle East during the 1970s.
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Personal papers, as well as government, business and legal documents, ranging from 17th century to the mid-point of the 20th century, documenting existence and consequences on the various frontiers that arose from the movements of Europeans to Africa, Australasia and North America.
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Primary sources from 19th century to present documenting changing representations and lived experiences of gender roles and relations, including pamphlets, speeches, newsletters, diaries and correspondence. Visual material is also featured, including photographs, illustrations, posters, scrapbooks and objects.
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Broad range of materials exploring the history of fifteen major commodities, examining how they have changed the world: chocolate, coffee, cotton, fur, opium, oil, porcelain, silver and gold, spices, sugar, tea, timber, tobacco, wheat, and wine and spirits.
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These accounts of the English abroad (including women travelers), c1550-1850, highlight the influence of continental travel on British art, architecture, urban planning, literature and philosophy. Also a source on the history of travel and on daily life in the 18th century.
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Diaries, official and private papers, letters, paintings and original Indian documents containing histories and literary works concerning the history of South Asia between the foundation of the East India Company in 1615 and the granting of independence to India and Pakistan in 1947.
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Archive relating to the business operations of one of the oldest and biggest advertising agencies, along with complete account files of nine prominent brands. Also includes a selection of about 1,500 ads from about 115 brands/clients from the US market.
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Personal letters, scrapbooks, and autobiographies, as well as papers and records of organizations, showing the communal and social aspects of Jewish identity and culture, whilst tracing Jewish involvement in the political life of American society as a whole.
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Guidebooks and brochures, periodicals, travel agency correspondence, photographs and personal travel journals explore the expansion, accessibility and affordability of British and American working class tourism c.1850 to 1980, touching on every continent on the globe.
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Complete facsimile images of 190 manuscripts of 17th and 18th century verse.
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Manuscripts, correspondence, and other materials by and about 15 authors including Emily Brontë, the Brownings, Joseph Conrad, Dickens, George Eliot, Hardy, Henry James, Ruskin, and Tennyson.
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Document themes cover the early book trade, the printing and publishing community, the establishment of legal requirements for copyright provisions, the history of bookbinding, and the history of the governance of London.
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Rare books, ephemera, maps and other materials relating to 19th and early 20th century London, emphasizing rare or unique material, particularly in ephemera and street literature, and visual material.
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Complete coverage of Cabinet minutes and memoranda of UK Prime Minister Harold Macmillan’s government.
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The complete market research reports of Ernest Dichter, the era’s foremost consumer analyst, market research pioneer and widely-recognised ‘father’ of Motivational Research. Documents can be browsed by industry. Includes an ad gallery.
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A pioneering social research organisation, Mass Observation was founded with the aim of creating an 'anthropology of ourselves.' This resource covers the original Mass Observation project, 1937–1967, offering insight into everyday life in Britain at the time.
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Primary source material including military, scientific, professional, and personal perspectives on medicine during conflicts across the globe from 1850–1927.
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This resource contains the five major letter collections that exist from 15th-century England, covering topics including family, business, relationships, trade, politics and community, as well as supporting material such as wills, deeds, account books, etc.
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Manuscripts of some of the most important works of European travel writing in fact and fantasy from the 13th to 16th centuries, focusing on journeys to the Holy Land, central Asia and the Far East. Original documents are in languages including French, Latin, German, Spanish, Dutch and English.
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Papers and collections of Edward Sylvester Morse, one of the first Americans to live in Japan, documenting life there before it was transformed by Western modernization. Morse made notes on subjects diverse as shop signs, fireworks, hairpins, agricultural tools, artists’ studios, music, games, printing, carpentry, the Ainu, gardens, household construction, art and architecture.
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Collections from 26 archives, libraries and museums exploring the movement of peoples from Great Britain, Ireland, mainland Europe and Asia to the New World and Australasia, across two centuries of mass migration.
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UK government papers, primarily top-level Anglo-American discussions and briefing papers during the period. Also material on social conditions, domestic reforms, trade, culture and the environment.
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"Perdita" means "lost woman" and the quest of the Perdita Project has been to find early modern women authors who were "lost" because their writing exists only in manuscript form. Manuscripts in this site were written or compiled by women in the British Isles during the 16th and 17th centuries.
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Printed and manuscript sources, visual material, ephemera and video clips documenting the societal changes of the period in areas including music, politics, fashion, and youth culture.
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Printed sources including rare books, pamphlets, trade cards, and advertising ephemera documenting the history of ‘popular’ remedies and treatments including trends such as phrenology, herbal medicine and hydrotherapy.
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Speeches, reports, surveys and analyses from the Race Relations Department and its annual Institute (Fisk University 1943-1970), including those by Institute participants including eminent sociologists, civil rights activists, anthropologists, industry leaders, and others.
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Working notebooks, verse manuscripts and correspondence of William Wordsworth and his fellow writers of the Romantic period. Also includes fine art and maps.
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Over 200 titles from key nations across the globe, keeping troops informed and connected. Titles from all key theatres are featured, including some non-English material.
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These prompt books tell the story of Shakespeare’s plays as they were performed in theatres throughout Great Britain, the United States and internationally, between the seventeenth and twentieth centuries.
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Documents and collections from libraries and archives across the Atlantic world, with close attention given to the varieties of slavery, the legacy of slavery, the social-justice perspective and the continued existence of slavery today.
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Documentaries, newsreels and features showing the world as seen by Soviet, Chinese, Vietnamese, East European, British and Latin American filmmakers, ranging from the early 20th century to the late 1980s, covering all aspects of the socialist experience from everyday life and society to culture, the Cold War, memory and current affairs.
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Highly illustrated trade catalogs display domestic consumerism, life and leisure in America between 1850 and 1950, documenting the evolution of distribution and communication systems as well as changing commercial tastes and fashions.
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Women's diaries, correspondence, photographs, etc. from global travels in the early 19th to late 20th centuries. Topics covered include: architecture, art, British Empire, climate, exploration, family life, housing, language, monuments, natural history, politics and diplomacy, race, religion, science, shopping, and war.
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This resource is comprised of four modules: "Circuses, Sideshows and Freaks," "Moving Pictures, Optical Entertainments and the Advent of Cinema," "Music Hall, Theatre and Popular Entertainment," and "Spiritualism, Sensation and Magic."
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This project presents the more than 3,000 items of the Ferrar Papers, relating to the Virginia Company of London's establishment of colonial settlements in North America during the 17th century.
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This collection consists of two elements: a finding aid to women's studies resources in The National Archives; and original documents covering the campaign for women's suffrage in Britain, 1903–1928, and the granting of women's suffrage in colonial territories, 1930–1962.
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Official records, monographs, publicity, artwork and artifacts for over 200 fairs. Documents focus on fairs from the ‘golden age’ of expositions, 1880-1920. However, the first fair represented was in 1851, the latest case study is Montreal's Expo 1967, and there are documents as recent as 2015.
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