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History: Books

This guide is intended to provide you with assistance in completing assignments in historical research, most specifically at Elizabeth City State University, using ECSU and open source resources.


Can't find what you are looking for?

InterLibrary Loan Picture

Interlibrary loan (ILL) is a borrowing service for ECSU students, faculty, and staff that supports scholarly research. Through this service you can request books, articles, and other materials that are not available at the ECSU Libraries.

ILL Request Form


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  • If you are looking for a specific topic or title, try doing a subject search on the term(s) in the search box above.
  • If you are looking for a general topic or title, try doing a keyword search on the term(s) in the search box above.
  • Limiting your search using Boolean can help give you better search results. Try connecting two search terms with AND or OR. Also, you can use NOT to limit your searched by ruling out certain search terms.

G.R. Little Library utilizes the Library of Congress classification system. You will find that most books and films related to History and related topics and issues will be shelved under call numbers beginning with C, D, E, and F.  Use the breakdown provided below to browse the shelves and/or help guide your search for  history related materials at the G. R. Little Library.

C - Auxiliary Science of History          DU - History of Oceania

D - General History                          DX - History of Romanies

DA – DR -  History of Europe            E - History of America and the US

DS  - History of Asia                        F - History of US

DT - History of Africa

Keywords helpful in finding primary sources in the library catalog

You can search the library catalog to find direct references to primary source material. Perform a keyword search for your topic and add one of the words below:
(these are several examples of words that would identify a source as primary)

  • charters
  • correspondence
  • diaries
  • early works
  • interviews
  • manuscripts
  • oratory
  • pamphlets
  • personal narratives
  • sources
  • speeches
  • letters
  • documents

-Source: Princeton University Libraries, accessed 10/23/2015 crh

Keywords + Connectors = Search

Keywords are the most basic words that define your topic. Don't type normal sentences into a database search box; just use the keywords.

Boolean connectors are words like AND, OR, and NOT. These words specify the relationships between your words.

Phrase Searches

Often keywords are more than one word. Databases let you put quotation marks around these so that only results with the exact phrase are listed.

"rap music"


Shortening a keyword to its basic root and adding a special character (usually an asterisk "*" or "?") at the end will tell the computer to search for variations on the word.

Searching for politic* will find: 


Note: Check the database's help screens to see which truncation symbol it recognizes.


Combines concepts and techniques. The database will search for what's grouped or nested inside the parentheses first.

("rap music" OR "hip hop") AND censorship


Set up a Refworks account to keep track of the article and books your discover in databases.

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G.R. Little Library

Elizabeth City State University