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HIST 061: Histories of Water (SC)

History 061: From the Ocean to the River: The Indus and the Ganges in Global History - Azfar (Spring 2023)

Dealing with broken links

Broken link? Look for an archived version.

Some uses for the Internet Archive's Wayback Machine:

Searching Web Archives

Web archives (e.g. Internet Archive) can be helpful for researching recent histories, since you can see what particular websites looked like at different points in time.

Some caveats: Not all websites end up included in the Internet Archive, and the archived versions of sites don’t always fully reflect the original version (e.g. interactive elements don't always display).

  • For example, is relatively well-covered. There are two main ‘views’ available:

    • Timeline View

      • Shows when the website was crawled. Allows easy navigation by date.

      • One way to start: Choose two dates, explore the (archived version of the) site as of each date, and compare what you find.

    • Sitemap View

      • Visually represents particular named sections of the site (e.g. press releases, blog posts, about) and how many pages were included in each.

      • Allows for navigating to particular sections by date, and some comparison between the size of sections over time.

      • One way to start: Identify a section (e.g. press releases).
        Explore this section on a specific date: e.g. Narmada press releases as of August 3, 2002.
        Compare to another date, e.g. March 10, 2005.

Web archive crawls follow URLs, and only go so many levels ‘deep’ into a site. That said, you may be able to find a seemingly-unavailable page crawled on a different day, since website creators/managers made changes to their sites at different points in time (re-arranging content, renaming, changing URLs).