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History resources

Links to guides to history resources in the Princeton University Library, plus JP and senior thesis help for history majors.

History grad reserves

The reserve reading for history graduate courses is on shelves on the right at the far end of the history reference/reading room. Reserve reading for undergraduate courses can be requested at the Circulation desk on the first floor.

You may check out graduate reserve books at the Circulation desk overnight – see for more information. Overnight loans begin 3 hours before the Circulation desk closes and items are due back one hour after the desk opens the next day. For students not enrolled in the course, a  staff member will make the book available.

Finally, some reserve reading – including readings for HIS 500 -- is available through e-reserves, which you can access through Blackboard.

If you have a problem with the reserve reading – e.g., a book is missing – please go to the Circulation desk and ask for help.

History reference reading room

The history reference reading room (A-7-B) houses a non-circulating collection of reference works and scholarly journals in history, current issues of major journals in history and history of science, and the reserve reading for graduate-level history courses. The room is open whenever Firestone Library is open.

History students often also use materials shelved in the Classics graduate study rooms. These rooms are kept locked, as are some of the other study rooms. Please ask for help at the Circulation desk if you need access to a locked study room.

History graduate study room

The history graduate study contains 80 carrels for history grad students in residence. Priority is given to first-, second- and third-years. If you are in residence but beyond the third year of study, you may be assigned a book locker in Firestone (for which students with DCE status are given priority) or may be assigned a study room carrel if space permits. If you are in absentia, you are not eligible for either a carrel or a locker.

To apply for a carrel, use the form at

Access to the history graduate study (A-8-B) is restricted to students who have assigned carrels in the room, and to other history graduate students. If you are a history grad student and need access, email and ask to be added to the prox card list.

If you have trouble with the prox card lock system, first, update your card at the nearest hotspot, which on the left side of the guard station as you enter the building. If that does not solve the problem, email for assistance.

Carrels must be renewed every year in early June. You will get an email reminder at that time. Please read it and follow the instructions, or you might find yourself homeless in the fall.

House rules

Any library books stored in your carrel or elsewhere in the room must be charged out to you. Books that are not charged out will be removed and returned to the circulation desk by the shelving staff.

Each carrel also has two nearby shelves assigned to it. The shelves are labeled with your name and carrel number. You may not store papers or personal impedimenta on these shelves.

There are additional shelves available for students preparing for generals. Please label each shelf with your name and carrel number.

Please reshelve the dictionaries after use. 

Take good care of the library books. Do not write in them, and if you use post-it notes, remove them before returning the books. Note that there is a substantial fee for lost or damaged materials.

Shelve all library books in good order. Oversized books should be shelved on their spines, not on the fore-edges of the binding.

Do not stack books and other impedimenta on the floor or the top of the bookshelves.  It makes it impossible for the cleaning staff to vacuum, which in turn leads to vermin and the downfall of civilization.

The study room is not the appropriate place to store your personal belongings while you are away from campus for an extended period. Please make other arrangements for storing your files, books, etc.

Abandoned items will be given to the guards at the entrance, who will then forward them to Public Safety's lost-and-found office, See for more information.