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History Research

This Library Research Guide is designed to provide a starting point for students researching history topics. For further assistance, please visit or contact a reference librarian.

Search the Bentley Library Search & eBook Collections

With over 154,000 books & 8,000 DVDs & Videos in the Bentley University Library's Collection, the Library Search is a great place to find primary and secondary sources for your project. Best practice is to log in first to Library Search before using it.

  • Search tips can help you formulate more relevant search queries.
  • Possible keywords you can use to find primary sources include:
    • Sources,
    • Personal Narratives
    • Diaries
    • Correspondence
    • Documentaries
    • Interview(s)
    • Letters 
    • Testimony.
  • Look in the appendices & exhibits of books to view excerpts of diaries, interviews & facsimiles (primary sources). 
  • Library Search also includes a number of government documents (primary sources).
  • Look in the bibliographies of sources you find, to identify other citations to explore.

Search for Items Beyond Bentley Library

Want to broaden your search to find even more materials? You can search for resources from libraries around the world using

You can also try searching Google Books.

If you find some books (or even just a chapter from a book) as you research that the Bentley Library does not have access to in our collections that would be useful to you, be sure to request them through Interlibrary Loan.

Bentley Library Doesn't Have It? Request it!

If you find an item (book, article, book chapter, etc.) in WorldCat, one of the databases, Google Scholar, or online that the Bentley Library does not own, you can request for that item to be sent here for you to borrow. Use our Interlibrary Loan system to request materials from other libraries.

Interlibrary Loan will not be able to obtain eBooks, the full issue of a journal, reference books, and may not be able to obtain DVD/Videos, audio books, conference proceedings, dissertations, or case studies.

Borrowing from Other Libraries

Did you know that Bentley Library is a member of the Boston Library Consortium? Find out how to borrow materials with a BLC card!