Historical and Literary Sources

The sources below will lead to journal articles, chapters in books, books, dissertations, and to articles in newpapers, both current and historic. Many more specialized sources are available in print and on-line. From E-Research, you can identify other useful on-line resources, by using the Subject tab in Find E-Resources. Research guides for book reviews and for newspapers are available.

When you have a reference to an article, use Citation Linker to search for it in Harvard's collections. Enter the citation information you have, and the linker will search the electronic journal collections at Harvard for the text of the articles and will search the HOLLIS catalog for holdings of journals in Harvard libraries. Some links will lead only as far as the journal's entry in the database. If that is the case, use the citation information to search within the publication, once the linker has connected you to the journal.

HOLLIS catalog includes records for all journals, both print and electronic, in the libraries' collections. Select the Journals tab from the search screen. Another means of identifying e-journals is to use E-Research. Select Find E-Journals, to search by title words or by subject.

Core Sources

MLA International Bibliography includes citations to journal articles, chapters in books, dissertations, books, etc. in literature, linguistics, folklore, film. The online version is 1926- present. Book reviews are not included. Use the Find It icon to link to journal articles in full text or to locate journals in Harvard’s collections.

Annual Bibliography of English Language and Literature included in Literature Online's "Criticism and Reference" section. When used through this portal, it provides access to the full text of articles in a number of scholarly journals.

Historical Abstracts (1954- ) includes books, book chapters, journal articles (but not book reviews) for non-North American history, 1450-date.

America: History and Life (1964- ) covers the history of the United States and Canada from prehistory to the present. Includes books, book chapters, journal articles, and dissertations. Includes book and media reviews.

Useful General Indexes

Academic Search Premier

ASP is a multi-disciplinary database that includes citations and abstracts from over 4,700 scholarly publications (journals, magazines and newspapers). Coverage begins in the 1990's. Includes book reviews.

Web of Science Citation Indexes

A multidisciplinary database covering the journal literature of the arts and humanities (1975- ), the social sciences, including history (1956- ) and the sciences (1900- ). It indexes 1,100 of the world's leading arts and humanities journals, as well as covering individually selected, relevant items from over 7,000 major science and social science journals. Because the information stored about each article includes the article's cited reference list (often called its bibliography), you can also search the database for articles that cite a known author or work. Includes book reviews. More information.

Periodicals Index Online (formerly PCI)

A retrospective index to articles in scholarly journals in the humanities and social sciences from their first issues (some from the late 18th century) through 1995. Journals in English and other European languages are indexed. PCI includes the complete table of contents for each issue of each journal. Includes book reviews.

Full Text Searchable General Indexes


This collection includes an extremely useful searchable collection of digitized back files of scholarly journals a wide range of fields, including language and literature, as well as many of interest for literary studies. Its coverage does not include the latest five years.

JSTOR offers full-text of complete runs (up to about 5 years ago) of over 400 journals. Allows simultaneous or individual searching, full-text searching optional, of many historical journals. List of included journals.

Project Muse

Muse is a searchable full-text collection which includes recent years of many of the same journals included in JSTOR, as well as a significant and growing collection of other titles. Very interesting for interdiscipinary work.

ACLS Humanities E-Book Project includes over 2200 largely history titles. Largely 1950-1999, some earlier, later. Full text searchable over whole collection. Browsable and searchable by LC Subject Heading. Links to book reviews in JSTOR, Project Muse and History Cooperative. Linked from HOLLIS records.

PAO Historical Studies Collection includes searchable full text of about 100 journals in history from their inception to 1995. Same journals are indexed in Periodicals Index Online, with links to the full text in PAO Historical Studies Collection, but are not full text searchable there. There are no links from HOLLIS to included journals.

Additional Periodical Indexes

Royal Historical Society Bibliography is a comprehensive bibliography of secondary sources dealing with the British Isles, British Empire and Commonwealth from 55 BC to the present.

CLC/Contemporary Literary Criticism

Excerpted criticism on works of selected novelists, poets, critics, dramatists, short story writers, and other creative writers now living or who died after 1959. Each entry contains a short biography, critical introduction, and excerpts from essays and book reviews taken from books, magazines, literary reviews, newspapers, and scholarly journals, and, if available, interviews with the author. Coverage is mixed, so this is a starting place, rather than an exhaustive source.

Iter Bibliography covers Medieval and Renaissance studies literature, including journal articles (some since 1794), essays, books, and dissertations.

Traditio Classicorum contains a bibliography of secondary literature concerning classical authors to the year 1650.

Bibliography of English women writers 1500-1640

German-language Periodical Indexes

Bibliographie zur Zeitgeschichte (1953- ) covers twentieth century world history, but focus is strongly on Germany and the World Wars in Europe.
LOCATION: History Dept: Ordered--currently received
LOCATION: Law School: ILS D 410.V5 Suppl. 1954-
LOCATION: Widener: HP1.4 v.1-30 HP144.2 v.31-36 WID-LC D421.Z99B53x v.37-

Cumulated in: Bibliographie zur Zeitgeschichte, 1953-1980.
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC D421.Z99 B52 x, 1982 Library has: 3 v.

Available online from 1996 to present. Adjust the menu of one field to Bibliogr. z. Zeitgesch.

About the Bibliographie zur Zeitgeschichte.  Note some of the links in this article do not work

DigiZeitschriften provides full text of German journals back to their inceptions.

Jahresberichte für deutsche geschichte (1925-40, 1949- ) is a list of new publications on German history. Covers Antiquity through World War II. The online version of Jahresberichte für deutsche Geschichte includes from 1974 forward. Issues from 1925-1938 are also available online.
LOCATION: Widener: Ger 55.64.15

Continues: Jahresberichte der Geschichtswissenschaft, 1878-1913.
LOCATION: Microforms (Lamont): Film SC 416 Microfilm. 1.-36. Jahrg. (1878-1913)
LOCATION: Widener: H 8.78.3

About the Jahresberichte für deutsche geschichte.

French-language Periodical Indexes

PERSEE is the French equivalent of JSTOR, providing full text from their inceptions to 5 years ago. The word "scientific" means "scholarly" here.

Bibliographie annuelle de l'histoire de France du cinqième siècle à ... (1953- ) is the most important index to French historical writings.

For earlier articles see:
Repertoire bibliographique de l'histoire de France, 1920-1931
Bibliographie des travaux publies de 1866 a 1897 sur l'histoire de la France de 1500 à 1789

French17 is an annual bibliography of French seventeenth century studies.

Bibliographie en langue francaise d'histoire du droit (1957- ) is a bibliography of books and periodical articles on French social history from 987 to 1875. Print version.

Book History Sources

Bibliographies and Indexes

Book History Online (1970- ) is a database in English on the history of the printed book and libraries and contains titles of books and articles on the history of the printed book worldwide. Print version:

Annual Bibliography of the History of the Printed Book and Libraries. The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff, 1970 -
Widener | BP 109.8
--Contains scholarly books and articles relating to the history of the printed book, book production, distribution, conservation, description and analysis and libraries. Also included are articles referring to the history of the arts, crafts, techniques, and equipment in relation to books, and to the book and library in their economic, social and cultural environment.

Wolfenbutteler Bibliographie zur Geschichte des Buchwesens im deutschen Sprachgebiet 1840-1980

Print version:
Wolfenbutteler Bibliographie zur Geschichte des Buchwesens im deutschen Sprachgebiet 1840-1980, by E. Weyrauch. Munchen; NY: K.G. Saur, 1990 -1999.
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z315.Z99 W49 1990x F Library has: 12 v.
--Includes periodical articles. Subject arrangement; author index.

Internationale Bibliographie des Buch- und Bibliothekswesens mit besonderer Berücksichtigung der Bibliographie, 1926-1940
LOCATION: Widener | B 6.26.55
LOCATION: Widener | B 6.26.5

Bibliographie des Bibliotheks- und Buchwesens, 1904-1925 (suspended 1912-1922).
LOCATION: Widener | B 6.26

An index to bibliographical papers published by the Bibliographical Society and the Library Association, London, 1877-1932, George Watson Cole. 1933.
LOCATION: Houghton: Reading Room HRR 14 99
LOCATION: Widener: BP 2.1.8

Indexes Library Association and Bibliographical Society publications, together with The Library and Bibliographica.

Continued by:

Index to selected bibliographical journals, 1933-1970. Bibliographical Society publication for the years 1969 and 1970. 1982.
LOCATION: Houghton: Reading Room HRR 14 99 2 F Addenda in pocket at end.
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z1002.I573 1982 F


  • Bibliotheck
  • Book Collector
  • Edinburgh Bibliographical Society Transactions
  • Journal of the Printing Historical Society
  • The Library
  • Oxford Bibliographical Society Proceedings and Papers
  • Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America
  • Records of the Glasgow Bibliographical Society
  • Studies in Bibliography
  • Transactions of the Cambridge Bibliographical Society

Continued by:

An index to selected bibliographical journals, 1971-1985, by John Feather. Occasional publication / Oxford Bibliographical Society; no. 23. London: Oxford Bibliographical Society, Bodleian Library, 1991.
LOCATION: Houghton: Reading Room HRR 14.99.3 F
LOCATION: Widener: BP 15.6.10 no.23


  • Bibliotheck
  • Book Collector
  • Journal of the Printing Historical Societ
  • The Library
  • Publishing History
  • Transactions of the Cambridge Bibliographical Society

Bibliographie der Buch- und Bibliotheksgeschichte: BBB, 1980- .
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z4.Z599 B52x

International (originally emphasized the German literature) list of books, articles and reviews on bibliography and the history of books and libraries

Dokumentationsdienst Bibliothekswesen: DOBI (1991- ). Print version:
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z666.F33x (1984- )
--International coverage, but with emphasis on German publications. Indexes 288 journals, with abstracts and full-text links.

Fachbibliographischer Dienst: Bibliothekswesen, 1965-
LOCATION: Widener: B 7605.74 (1966-81)

Internationale Bibliographie des Buch- und Bibliothekswesens mit besonderer Bercksichtigung der Bibliographie, 1926-1940.
LOCATION: Widener: B 6.26.55

Bibliographie des Bibliotheks- und Buchwesens, 1904-1926
LOCATION: Widener: B 6.26

No abstracts.

Forschungs dokumentation zu Handschriften und Seltenen Drucken (Bayerische Staatsbibliothek)
--Bibliography of secondary literature on manuscripts, personal papers, and rare books.

Index to reviews of bibliographical publications, 1976-1985.
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC PR83.Z99 I52x

British library history: bibliography, 1969- .
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z791.A1 K432 x [1969-1972]
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z791.A1 K433 [1973-1976]
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z791.A1 B76 1983 [1977-1980]
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z791.A1 B77 x, 1987 [1981-1984]
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC Z791.A1 B78 1991x [1985-1988]

JSTOR offers full-text of complete runs (up to about 5 years ago) of over 400 journals. Allows simultaneous or individual searching, full-text searching optional, of many historical journals. List of included bibliographical journals.

Research Guide

A Bibliographic History of the Book: An Annotated Guide to the Literature.
Metuchen, NJ: Scarecrow Press, 1995.
Widener | WID-LC | Z4 .R69 1995

History of Books and Printing: A Guide to Information Sources.
Detroit: Gale, 1979.
Widener | WID-LC | Z117 .W54

Book History Literature

Brenni, Vito Joseph. The Art and History of Book Printing : A Topical Bibliography.
Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1984.
Widener | WID-LC | Z117 .B82 1984

Dictionary Catalogue of the History of Printing from the John M. Wing Foundation in the Newberry Library.
Boston,: G. K. Hall, 1961.
Reproduction of catalog cards of one of the most extensive American libraries of the history of printing.
Houghton | B 4400 605 F* Photographic reproduction of the card catalogue of the Wing foundation.

Dictionary Catalogue of the History of Printing from the John M. Wing Foundation in the Newberry Library, 2d Supplement.
Boston, Mass.,: G.K. Hall, 1981.
Houghton | B 4400 605.3 F*

Periodical History

Annual Review of Work in Newspaper and Periodical History. In: Media history, Vol. 4, no. 1 (June 1998)-
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC P87.M43x Current Issues: Periodicals Reading Room Stacks

Studies in newspaper and periodical history, 1993-95
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC PN4801.S785

Journal of newspaper and periodical history, 1984-1992
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC PN4801.J68x

Unannotated world-wide list.

Selected List of Current Scholarship on American Periodicals, 1991- . In: American periodicals: a journal of history, criticism, and bibliography.
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC PN4877.A485

Unannotated list.

Victorian periodicals, an annotated bibliography, 1971- . In: Victorian periodicals review, 1979-
LOCATION: Widener: WID-LC PN5124.P4 V52x Current Issues: Periodicals Reading Room Stacks

Annotated list, by author, of books, articles, reviews, and dissertations about periodicals that were published between 1800 and 1914 in the U.K. and its colonies, and to some extent elsewhere in the English-speaking world.

Cumulated in: L. K. Uffelman's The nineteenth-century periodical press in Britain: a bibliography of modern studies, 1972-1987.
LOCATION: Widener: RR 655.312.2.

Earlier references may be found in: L. Madden's The nineteenth-century periodical press in Britain: a bibliography of modern studies, 1901-1971.
LOCATION: Widener: RR 655. 312

Periodicals of Interest for Book History

Book History University Park, PA: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1998 -
Widener | WID-LC | Z4 .B66x

Bulletin of the Bibliographical Society of America, Cambridge: The University Press, 1907 - 1909; Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1909-1913.
Widener | BP
This title was succeeded by the following:

Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America. Chicago, Ill. : University of Chicago Press, 1913-
Houghton | *AP9.B4712 v.1-73 [Earlier bound volumes only.]
Houghton | Reading Room HRR 14.68 v.74- 
Widener | BP 1.3.1 [Current Issues: Periodicals Reading Room Stacks]

The Library. London, New York: Oxford University Press, 1889-
Houghton | Z761 .L69
Houghton | *EP85.L6166 ser. 1, v. 1-ser. 5, v. 33 Later issues in Stacks and Houghton Reading Room (Z671.L69)
Widener | BP 184.2.4 Current Issues: Periodicals Reading Room Stacks

Printing History. (New York, American Printing History Association), 1979-
Houghton| *HRef-151
Widener| WID-LC Z119 .P74x [Current Issues: Periodicals Reading Room Stacks]

Studies in Bibliography: Papers of the Bibliographical Society of the University of Virginia. Charlottesville: The Society, 1949-
Houghton | *AP9.B4713 v.2-
Widener | BP 22.4

Transactions of the Bibliographical Society. London: The Society, 1893 - 1920.