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HIST 206: Victorian America: Finding Journal Articles (Primary & Secondary)

Articles: a step-by-step guide

Articles: A Step-by-Step Guide

1.) Look for citations and articles

  • Gather citations with Indexes and Databases
  • Find citations in books and articles with Bibliographies

2.) Locate the journal when you have a citation

  • Title search on Title of the Journal to locate article in a Full Text Database

3.)  WestCat - Western Michigan's catalog  (finds the journal at WMU -- you must go there to retrieve it, whether it's print or online)

4.) Interlibrary Loan

Scholarly or Popular?

Types of Periodicals

Scholarly Journals (American Journal of Chinese Studies)

  • Authors are scholars or researchers in their fields.
  • Authors cite their sources in footnotes, endnotes, and bibliographies.
  • Individual issues have little or no advertising.
  • Articles must go through a peer-review process.
  • Articles usually report original scholarly research.
  • Most illustrations are charts, figures, or graphs.
  • Authors use the specialized language or jargon of the discipline.

Popular Magazines (Newsweek or Time)

  • Authors are free lance writers or magazine staff members.
  • Authors may mention sources, but rarely cite them in notes or bibliographies.
  • Individual issues contain many advertisements.
  • There is no peer review process. Articles are reviewed by editors or publishers.
  • Illustrations are numerous and colorful.
  • Articles are meant to inform and entertain an educated audience.
  • Language is written for the general adult audience (no specialized jargon).

    Scholarly or Not?
    Use Ulrich's Online
    Document Type MUST say "Academic/Scholarly Publication" to be considered scholarly!

Indexes and Databases - Secondary Sources


Indexes lead you to article citations that include author, article title, journal title, volume number, publication date, and page number. Citations do not include the entire article. You must locate the journal once you have a citation.

America: History and Life

Social Sciences Abstracts Full Text

Sociological Abstracts

Scholarly academic journals. How to search JSTOR

Project MUSE
Scholarly academic journals

Proquest Research Library
Can limit to scholarly academic journals


Indexes and Databases - Primary Sources

Artwork Image Database NOTE: You must have registered for an Artstor an account from a computer on the Kalamazoo College campus to take advantage of off-campus access. (Click on 'Enter Artstor Digital Library' to access registration box).

Scholarly academic journals. How to search JSTOR

New York Times (1851 to 3 years ago)
PDF version of the historical New York Times. Looks exactly like a copy of the paper.

Readers' Guide Retrospective (1890-1982)
Readers' Guide Abstracts indexes and abstracts general interest and popular periodicals published in the U.S. and Canada.

Kalamazoo Gazette Historical
Full-text coverage of the weekly and daily versions of the Kalamazoo Gazette, 1837-1922.

Harper's Weekly
Full text with illustrations of Harper's Weekly from 1857-1889, searchable by keywords, by literary genre, by occupations and role in society, and browseable by date.

Accessible Archives
This database provides full text access to a diverse range of primary source materials from 18th & 19th century America. The collection includes:letters, advertisements, editorials, sketches, county records, complete runs of important periodicals and much more. Titles of interest include: The Pennsylvania Gazette, the Virginia Gazette, The South Carolina Gazette, Godey's Lady's Book (1830-1845, and The North Star.

American Antiquarian Society Historical Periodicals The Library subscribes to Series 3 (1838-1852) and Series 5 (1866-1877)


Older Popular Magazines in print in the K Library

Older Popular Magazines in owned by the K Library

Links go to the magazine's record in Ariadne


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