Skip to Main Content

History: Introduction

Discipline and Department Research Guides identify and define standard information retrieval tools for a specific department or discipline. Each guide was created and is maintained by the library liaison for that department. We encourage you to recommend

Clio: The Muse of History

History Web Sites

A set of collections of public domain and copy-permitted historical texts, maps, and articles on a wide variety of historical areas and subjects. Compiled by Prof. Paul Halsall at Fordham University.
Extensive directory of history resources, sorted into research methods, topics, eras and epochs, and regions. Hosted by European University Institute in Florence, Italy, and maintained with help from researchers at the University of Kansas, US.
A selection of stories about historic people and events.
A collection of links to articles on various history subjects from ancient history to modern times.
Scholarly initiative to create a comprehensive interactive electronic historical world atlas combining mapping, imagery, and texts. Aims, technology, scope, themes, news, membership, conference.
Articles, books, and links for historical texts from several countries.
Categorized history articles, features, thumbnailed picture gallery, discussion board, and special events and exhibits.
Aspires to put news in historical context by publishing articles written by historians on current events topics. Published by the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University.
Source for history, original content, including multimedia exhibits, as well as links to other sites. Topics include world history, American history and current events.
Provides a way to view history by time period, event or person.
Contains narrative world history, quizzes, and interactive world history timelines.
A history Web site development firm specializing in historic preservation and historical documentaries.
Provides an overview of Western history from ancient Sumeria to the present, including profiles of major figures, timelines, photos, and interactive features.
Internet-based subject gateway to scholarly relevant information in history, maintained at the State and University Library at Göttingen, Germany. Searchable by subject and by source type.
Catalog of journals, catalogs, and other scholarly resources in German and English.
Research on history, geography and logistics of communication, pilgrimage, and trade routes of Eurasia and Africa 10,000 BCE to circa 1820 CE.
Gallery of reconstructed portraits of key figures from world history, without anachronisms, respecting contemporary style, and based on historical sources.
An overview on weirder history with a link to videos on the topic.
A collection of links to various sites related to historical events and institutions.


Welcome to the History Department Libary Guide, compiled and edited by Michael Lorenzen, liaison to the History Department. 

History Library Guide

College students have a lot to consider when starting their research. Finding and verifying the credibility of resources is an important part of the process, especially when it comes to topics like history. To assist college students, this guide serves as an introduction to the history resource guide available through Western Illinois University Libraries.


The purpose of this guide is to provide college students with an overview of the resources available through WIU Libraries for researching historical topics. Students will learn what criteria to consider when selecting credible web and print resources, as well as some of the best examples for each type of resource.

The topics covered in this guide include credible web resources, print resources, and best practices for researching history. This guide provides an introduction for college students who are just getting started with their research and who may not have a lot of experience with finding and verifying sources.

Credible Web Resources

When researching historical topics, it is important to consider the credibility of web sources. College students should look for sources that are reliable, accurate, and up-to-date. They should also consider the source’s authoritativeness and objectivity.

Some of the best web resources for researching historical topics include: Google Scholar, Wikipedia, and The National Archives. Google Scholar is a great starting point for research as it provides access to scholarly articles, books, and other sources. Wikipedia can also be a great resource as long as students take the time to verify its accuracy. The National Archives is a great resource for primary sources such as documents, photographs, and audio recordings.

Print Resources

Print resources can also be great for researching historical topics. When selecting print materials, college students should consider the author’s credentials, the publisher’s reputation, and whether or not the material has been revised recently.

Some of the best print resources for researching history include: textbooks, encyclopedias, dictionaries, biographies, and bibliographies. Textbooks provide a comprehensive overview of a particular subject and are often revised regularly to ensure accuracy. Encyclopedias provide concise summaries of topics and are often organized alphabetically for easy reference. Dictionaries provide definitions of terms related to a particular subject. Biographies provide detailed accounts of individuals and their contributions to history. Bibliographies provide lists of books that are related to a particular topic.


This guide serves as an introduction to the history resource guide available through WIU Libraries. College students should now have an understanding of what criteria they should consider when selecting credible web and print resources, as well as some of the best examples for each type of resource. It is also important to remember that when researching historical topics, best practices include verifying sources, using multiple types of sources, and citing sources properly.

Professor, University Libraries

Profile Photo
Dr. Michael Lorenzen
Leslie F. Malpass Library 638
1 University Circle
Macomb, IL 61455-1390
309-298-1939 (Office), 309-298-2717 (Archives)

History News Network

Loading ...