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Ramping Up Your Research: Tips and Resources for Historical Fiction Writers: Best History Sites

Searching for Old Books and Documents

If you are looking for a book or a document that is out of copyright (older than 75 years), there is a good chance you will find it on one of these sites:

Internet Archives

Project Gutenburg

Hathi Trust

Where to Start?

On this page, you will find some  examples of the types of web sites good for historical research.  Many national libraries, historical societies, and museums,  now offer extensive digital collections.  Other web sites are specialized in specific historical periods or topics.  These are just a few examples; thousands of amazing sites are available.  Go  to the section "GOOGLE SEARCHING TIPS" to learn how to find good web sites on your topic using Google.

General 

Best of History Web Sites (Organized by periods and topics)

Medievalists.net

The Labyrinth (Resources for Medieval Studies)

Early Modern Web

Cold War International History Project

American History

From Revolution to Reconstruction

The African American Mosaic

Densho Digital Archive (Japanese American Internment Camps)

Valley of the Shadows: Two Communities in Civil War America

Anti-War and Radical History Project

Immigration to the United States 1789-1930

European History

British History Online

The British Empire

VictorianWeb.org

French Revolution Digital Archive

Liberty, Equality, Fraternity:  Exploring the French Revolution

Seventeen Moments in Soviet History

Holocaust Memorial Museum

Africa:

Transatlantic Slave Trade Database

Slavery Images:  A Visual Record of the African Slave Trade and Slave Life in the Early African Diaspora

Asia:

The East Asian Collection

Historical Photographs of China

 

Web Research ABCs

A:  AUTHORITY
There so much  questionable information on the web.  Always make sure to check who is responsible for the information on a web page.  Check for "About Us" or "Who We Are".  If you cannot figure out who is behind the page, don't use the information!

B:  BIAS​
There's plenty of opinions about who did what and why.  You might be looking for a particular bias.  Just make sure it's the right one

C:  CURRENCY
Our knowledge of history changes with new research, new viewpoints.  Make sure your research has current information.

Fun Sites

FoodTimeline.org
Find out what people were eating in the 14th century, or discover when potato chips were invented!

Fashion Era
Explore fashion history and costumes through the ages