American and New England Studies

Guide to Reference Sources

This is a selective, not a comprehensive, guide to resources of interest to students of American and New England Studies. The suggestions below reflect the interdisciplinary nature of the program. While this guide help get you started, please do not hesitate to come to the Reference Desk for help finding or using these and other resources. Or contact us at: Gorham, 780-5344; Portland, 780-4272.

Definitions and Background

  • American National Biography. (Por/Gor REF CT213 .A68 1999), and its precursor, Dictionary of American Biography (Por/Gor REF E176 .D563).
  • Dictionary of American History. (Por/Gor REF E174 .D52 1976)
  • Dictionary of Literary Biography. (Por REF PN 451 D5)
  • Encyclopedia of American Studies. (Por REF E169.1 .E625 2001)
  • Historical Statistics of the United States. (Por REF HA215 .D6)
  • St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture. (Por REF E169.1.S764 2000)

Journal and Newspaper Articles

  • America: History and Life. (Mariner) Indexes and abstracts journal articles, book chapters, dissertations and book reviews concerning U.S. and Canadian history, published 1964-present.
  • Art Abstracts. (Mariner) 1984-present. Indexes the journal literature in the visual arts, including architecture.
  • Art Index Retrospective. (Mariner) 1929-1984. Indexes the journal literature in the visual arts, including architecture.
  • Dissertation Abstracts. (Mariner) Indexes doctoral dissertations 1861-present, with abstracts 1960-present.
  • MLA Bibliography. (Mariner) The standard index for literature and folklore, MLA Bibliography indexes books, proceedings, and journal articles from 1963-present.
  • Sociological Abstracts. (Mariner) Provides indexing and abstracts to the sociology literature from 1974-present.

Finding Books

  • URSUS. The catalog of the University of Maine System, URSUS also includes holdings of several public libraries.
  • WorldCat. (Mariner) A combined catalog listing over 48 million books, sound recordings, manuscripts, and other materials held by OCLC member libraries.

Recommended Web Sites

  • American Memory (Library of Congress)

    Another great collection of digitized primary sources (including pamphlets, photographs, transcripts, and sound recordings) from the Library of Congress. Notable collections are the Daniel Murray Collection of pamphlets written by African-Americans between Reconstruction and the early 1900s, the WPA oral histories, and The Evolution of the Conservation Movement, a collection documenting the U.S. conservation movement between 1850 and1920.

  • American Studies Web (Georgetown University)

    Sponsored by the American Studies Association, this site provides indexing of the American Quarterly and dissertations in American Studies, as well as a link to the American Studies Web, a subject-based web directory with pointers to pages on Art and Material Culture, Region and Environment, and Economy and Politics, among other topics.

  • Cultural Maps (University of Virginia)

    An online historical atlas, providing links to several map collections' digitized resources; the collection at the University of Georgia's Hargrett Library stands out.

  • Environmental History in American Studies (Miami University)

    Links to Association for the Study of Literature and the Environment, the John Muir Exhibit, Abbey's Web, and other sites dedicated to nature writing and environmental thought.

  • Making of America (University of Michigan)

    Searchable full-text of approximately 1600 books and 50,000 journal articles published in the 19th Century. This is a remarkable resource for primary source material in American social history.

  • U.S Historic Documents (MidAmerica Nazarene University)

    Arranged chronologically, starting with a letter from Columbus to the King and Queen of Spain and continuing through George W. Bush's speech to Congress on September 20, 2001, this collection includes early state charters, treaties with Native American tribes, and Supreme Court cases, as well as speeches and letters.

For Further Research

  • American Studies: an Annotated Bibliography. (Por REF E169.1 .A6475 1986)
  • New England in U.S. Government Publications. (Por REF Z1251 .E1 C58 1998)

Using the subheading "Bibliography" after any subject heading (ie., "New England History - Bibliography") can help you locate subject-specific bibliographies in URSUS.