Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.

History 200: Doing History (Prof. Gomez): Getting Started

This research guide has been created to specifically help students enrolled in Prof. Gomez's History 200 course. For additional information on navigating library resources during the Spring 2020 COVID-19 pandemic, please go to Remote Access to Library Services and Resources.  Please don't hesitate to ask for research help!

Using Subject Encyclopedias

Encyclopedias and other reference resources are excellent places to start your research! You usually can expect to find the following important information in articles in subject encyclopedias:

  • An overview of the topic, with key individuals and events identified, and often some mention of how the topic has been studied (historiography)
  • Cross references to give you a sense of the boundaries of the topic and its relationship to other topics
  • Identification of primary source materials
  • Bibliographies of key secondary literature (books and articles) on the topic
  • Scholarly editions of primary sources may be listed in the bibliography

Tip:  Specialized encyclopedias sometimes include excerpts of primary source materials!  

Browse Subject Encyclopedias

Broad Overviews: U.S. History

Both of the subject encyclopedias listed below are the standard reference resources for U.S. history.



Subject Encyclopedias: Specific Themes and Topics

The following list is just a sampling of the specialized subject encyclopedias available to you.  Ask Peggy Burge for recommendations if you can't find what you need.

Online Subject Encyclopedia Collections

Each collection listed below includes hundreds of volumes of specialized reference resources.


Biographical Resources

Guides to History Research & Writing

Subject Guide

Peggy Burge's picture
Peggy Burge
Collins Library 119

Work with a Peer Research Advisor!

Spring 2021

Hannah Turner and Allie Highsmith are your Peer Research Advisors for 2020-21!
Virtual Drop-in Hours 
(Spring Semester hours begin on Sunday, January 24)
Sunday through Wednesday:  6:30 to 8:30 pm PST (Pacific Standard Time)
We use Google Meet: 
Meeting Phone Numbers: (‪US‬)‪+1 262-457-9538‬, PIN: ‪254 151 924#‬
Please be signed in to Puget Sound's Google Suite for Education.



Allie and Hannah are also available for individual appointments, beginning the week of January 25. Go to our Schedule a Research Appointment page, click the request button, and select either Hannah or Allie from the drop-down menu to see what appointment times they have available.