Searching Harvard Collections: Our Major Resource Hubs



This is the key to the kingdom here at Harvard. If you bookmark just one library address, we suggest

Our 2-in-1 "discovery system," HOLLIS combines the extensive contents of our library catalog, the record every item owned by every Harvard Library with those of another, large and multidisciplinary database of journal, newspaper, and magazine articles. 

By default, you search both databases at once ("Catalog & Articles"), though you can separate the catalog results out separately. 

A robust system of limiters (facets) can help you refine and better target relevant results if you end up with very large results sets.  

Key search techniques for creating good HOLLIS queries are  identified in the image at right.

Most of these are also are used in library subject database searching.  Check out our detailed HOLLIS user guide for more.

Library Databases

From this page, you can search for databases of scholarship, primary sources, data, news (current and historical), video, and more.  Most of the resources you discover here are licensed by the library -- which means they're only available to affiliates and you'll use your Harvard ID to open them. 

To facilitate discovery, the Databases page allows you to search by keyword, see a list of the heavily used resources, browse broad subject categories or pair a subject category with a content type.  

Keyword searches will typically provide you with 3 "suggested resources" on the horizontal axis below the search box, chosen by librarians.  Up to 10 "Best Bets for ..." resources display on the right side vertical axis of the page. 

Harvard for Archival Discovery 

A place for surfacing the finding aids, collection guides, and item inventories of 31 Harvard repositories of special collections archives in the Harvard Library system. Descriptive materials can be searched by keyword, at the collection level, or limited to digitized materials. 


A special site for finding digitized images from across libraries, special collections, museums, and Harvard Archives.  View search tips and repository information.


DASH (Institutional Repository)

DASH hosts a wide range of Open Access Harvard-affiliated scholarly works, including pre- and post-refereed journal articles, conference proceedings, theses and dissertations, working papers, and reports. You can keyword search, browse by  researcher "communities," author names, titles, FAS department,and dates.  To learn more about the impact of DASH world-wide, see Dash Stories

Harvard Dataverse

An open source web repository designed to store, preserve, and cite research data across the humanities, sciences, and social sciences. As a central repository for this material, the Dataverse aims to promote data sharing, discovery, exploration, replication, and analysis. Getting Started with Dataverse.

Harvard Libraries Home Page

Our virtual front door, it's best used for news, announcements of exhibits and events, and other high- level general information about collections, services, and people.