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Martha S. Grafton Library

American History: Books

Guide to resources in American history, including reference works, databases, and websites.

Using books

You have many options when it comes to finding and using books.

Search the Grafton Library Catalog for books we own. 

Search Worldcat for books at any library and request them to be sent to you through interlibrary loan (click on the ILL button).

Search Dissertations & Theses Full Text for Master's and Doctoral theses on your subject.

Find Books

Using Subject Terms

Subject terms describe the intellectual content of the book.  When you find a resource that is relevant to your topic, check to see what subect terms the Library of Congress has associated with that item.  Use those terms in a new searchs to find other items of equal or greater relevance.  Resources often have multiple subject terms to fully describe the content of the book.  You will see that subject terms are strings of words or phrases that combine topics such as places, time periods, events, people, source types, or larger concepts.   Here is a short list of examples:

United States -- History -- Sources

Witchcraft -- Massachussets -- Salem -- History -- 19th century

Japan - Social life and customs -- 1912-1945

New Deal, 1933-1939

Washington, George, 1732-1799 -- Military Leadership

World War, 1914-1918 -- Social aspects

Finding library books

Many books on American History will be in the E and F sections of the library.

  • E: History of the Americas
    • E11-E143: America
    • E151-909: United States
  • F: History of the Americas
    • F1-975: United States local history