Click here to access your research intro!

Starting out

Gale Virtual Reference Library (eBooks) – password on the green sheet. Remember that “excerpt” refers to a primary source. The UXL Encyclopedia of U.S. History is a good first source.

World Book Online – Basic information. Follow directions on the green sheet.

Exploring American History: 1550 to 1877 – Same username and password as Gale eBooks

The Old West Encyclopedia – Same username and password as the Gale eBooks

Finding books

  1. See our reserve carts. Remember to check the 1800s cart – not just the cart for your class’s topic.
  2. Find books in the collection. Use the app on your iPad. From a computer try:
  • Click on Destiny Library Catalog (on the right) to see if we have a book on your topic.
  • Print your list, or sign in to save your list.
  • If you want to check out a book, write your name on a small post-it and place that in the front of the book. If no one else wants the book, you can check it out the last week of research.
  • Sorry, we won’t be checking out Reference books or the books on the reserve carts.


Menlo Park Public Library Databases: You’ll need your public library card number OR the Library Links number on your green sheet.


Library Links for Education – Most of these are listed above, but you might find something new!

General Websites – Most cover many topics

Digital Public Library of America – Primary Source sets.

America’s Library – from the Library of Congress. Click on your era!

American Memory, from the Library of Congress Lots of amazing primary documents.

More Library of Congress Digital Collections.

EyeWitness to History – “Your ringside seat to History” – eyewitness accounts (primary sources). Choose “Voices” or “History in Motion” for audio and video clips.

Digital History– Various topics. Online textbook, primary sources, multimedia.

History Channel

PBS – The American Experience

National Park Service – Search for your topic

The History Place – Ad-supported but reputable. Main exhibits down the middle, left sidebar has lots more info.

Freedom – A History of US – Click “Webisodes menu.”  Also, LOTS of great links!

Lone Star College Links – Some of their links are a little questionable, but some are amazing!

PBS Learning Media – search for videos,websites and images

Westward Expansion

PBS – The West

PBS – Gold Rush

PBS – Native Americans

Oregon Trail

Native Americans – tons of links – scroll down!

Cherokee Nation  Site – Sidebars on left for Culture, History and Language

Mexican-American War – great images and maps

Alamo, Battle of

Union Pacific Rail Road: History and Photos

Civil War, Slavery & Reconstruction

Civil War Homepage – links to primary documents

Solving a Civil War photo mystery – before there was photoshop, photos were manipulated to make a point!

Africans in America – PBS

Born in Slavery – Slave narratives from the Library of Congress

Lone Star College Links – Click through to find info and primary sources

Becoming a World Power (old topics)

Rise of Industrial America – Library of Congress

Andrew Carnegie – PBS

Child Labor – Deeply moving photos, informative captions.

Tenement Museum of New York– Browse exhibits or click History.

Haven to Home – 350 Years of Jewish life in America.