Skip to Main Content


United States history

  • United States history: a bibliography of the new writings on American history. Compiled by Louise A. Merriam and James W. Oberly. Manchester; New York: Manchester University Press; New York, NY.
    History Reference (SH). Firestone Z1236 .M47 1995
  • The state of U.S. history. Edited by Melvyn Stokes. Oxford; New York: Berg, 2002.
    History Reference (SH). Firestone E175 .S73 2002
  • Reader's guide to American history. Editor, Peter J. Parish. London; Chicago: Fitzroy Dearborn Publishers, 1997.
    History Reference (SH). Firestone Z1236 .R43 1997
    Essays that describe the major work by historians on a topic and, in the process, provide a good introduction to the historiography. Particularly useful to the student trying to decide what to read first.

Embedded historiography

Most doctoral dissertations in history begin with a discussion of previous work on whatever the topic may be, so it may be helpful to search Dissertation Abstracts (ProQuest Digital Dissertations) for a recent dissertation on your topic. In general, dissertations written after 1995 will be available in full text.

A good textbook or introduction to a topic may have a bibliographic essay -- sometimes at the back, under the title "Further Reading." When well done, this can be extremely helpful in getting oriented to the literature on your topic.