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HIST 449W Uncovering Emory's Past

Princeton Guide to Historical Research

Want tips on how to read and write like a historian? Check out Zach Schrag's The History Professor website.

Library Catalogs

Search Tips

Books in libraries are assigned subject headings. When you find a good book on your topic, click on the subject headings assigned to that book in library search to find other titles on that topic. Or, use the subject heading terms in a new search.

You can employ these strategies - and the same subject headings - to search by topic in the WorldCat "mega-catalog" and in most academic library catalogs.

Examples of related subject headings: [NOTE: omit dashes and other punctuation when typing in catalog search terms]:

University--Students--History--20th century

College Students--Political Activity--History

Locating Library Materials in the Stacks

You need three pieces of information from library search to find a book or other physical item:

  • Library:  Woodruff Library is designated as "GENERAL" or "GENERAL LIBRARIES"

  • Call Number:  System of letters and numbers that group materials by subject.  Woodruff Library uses the Library of Congress (LC) call number system.   How to "Read" a Call Number

  • Location: many Woodruff Library materials have a location of "STACKS" (library lingo for "book floors)." Our call number guide (also available around elevators and service points) tells you what call numbers reside on each Stacks floor.


Is the item you need checked out? in Storage? at the Oxford Library? Missing from the shelf?  Info on recalling and requesting library materials