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HIST 091: Senior Research Seminar (SC)

History 091: Senior Research Seminar (Megan Brown and Bob Weinberg) Fall 2024

About this Guide

This research guide suggests databases, books, primary sources, and other resources for your History 091 project.

Start Here:

Research Consults & Questions

You can get help with finding primary and secondary sources, citations, and organizing your research.

Simon Elichko (they/them)
Social Sciences & Data Librarian

Access Swarthmore College Special Collections

Swarthmore College Special Collections is a department within the library where manuscripts, archives, rare books, historic photographs and images, and other special materials are held. There are four units within the department, each with a distinct mission to collect items within their subject area:

Students are welcome and invited to use Special Collections. Our materials are only available in our Reading Room, and an appointment is required, but Swarthmore students can easily book a Special Collections appointment online.  The Special Collections Reading Room is located in McCabe Library, to your left as soon as you enter the building (room #130).

If you have any questions, please reach out to Celia Caust-Ellenbogen (she/her) at

A few key tips for History 91

  1. Start early.
    Give yourself extra time to explore, read, and write during the fall semester. Starting early could include thinking about your potential research question, possible primary sources you could use, and/or looking at relevant secondary sources (e.g. scholarly books, journal articles).
  2. Reach out + ask questions
    Scholarship is often envisioned as a solitary pursuit, but a key part of the History 91 involves expanding your knowledge and research skills by benefiting from the expertise of others. Talking with other people about your work is essential and will help you clarify your thinking, identify useful resources, and stay on track with your project. (Some of the people you might talk to include Professor Dorsey, Professor Weinberg, your faculty advisor, librarian Simon Elichko, other librarians, WAs, and RIAs)
  3. Search strategically.
    You might find good scholarly sources through keyword searches in JSTOR, but finding primary sources involves using different databases and search strategies. Spelling, word choice, and geographic names may have been different during the time period you're researching.  Keep this in mind when you're searching for primary source documents. (And don't hesitate to reach out if you need help navigating this process.)