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HIST 320A: Founding Farmers: Finding Books & Articles

Finding Books in Van Wagenen Library

1. Choose "Find Books" from the dropdown menu beside the main search box.

2. Enter two or three keywords in the search box. You may need to try different combinations of words to find exactly what you're looking for. Once you've found a book you're interested in, write down the "call number" provided.

Most of our cookbooks and books about food have call numbers that begin with the letters "TX." Some books about the role of particular food in a culture may have call numbers beginning with "GT." Agricultural texts about growing or raising a certain crop or animal will often have call numbers beginning with SB, SF, or SH. Books about similar subjects are grouped together on the shelves.

3. Look for the signs on the ends of the rows to help you find the shelf that has your book.

Library shelf guide signscall number on book spine

If you need help, ask a librarian or staff member at the main desk on the library's first floor.

Online Journals, Magazines, & Databases

The simple search box on the library's main page provides access to hundreds of books, newspapers, popular magazines, trade publications, and scholarly journals. These include online, full-text sources and printed materials available to borrow from the Van Wagenen Library. After conducting a basic search, you can use the "Source Type" box on the left side of your results list to focus on only one type of source material (e.g. academic journals, magazines, trade publications). 


Database Search Tips

  • Select Peer-Reviewed to limit you search to only articles published in peer-reviewed journals.
  • Select Full-Text to see only articles you can read immediately.
  • If the full text of an article isn't available, you can request it for free through InterLibrary Loan (ILLIAD). Articles usually take 24-48 hours to arrive, and are sent to you by email.
  • When you have found an article that is close to what you are looking for, look at the subject headings. Try searching these terms to find relevant articles.
  • Look at the references/citations at the end of an article to find more articles on your topic.