Skip to main content
It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
Historical Context and Background Info
Use the following sources to get historical context and background information on your topic.
Gale Virtual Reference Library
Contains encyclopedias and specialized reference sources for multidisciplinary research. Good place to search for background information on a topic.
Contains the full text of dictionaries, encyclopedias, and companions published by Oxford University Press. A good place to start a research project.
Dictionary of American History
A standard reference work in United States history. Covers prehistory to 2002. Also available in print (SAWYER REFERENCE E174 .D52 2003).
Encyclopedia of African American Culture and History
Covers all aspects of the African American experience from 1619 to the present day in the U.S. and throughout the Western hemisphere. Articles are signed by experts in the field and are accompanied by a selected bibliography. The appendix contains statistical data and a selection of primary source documents.