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A Guide to American History

This page brings together various information resources on the subject of American History.

Reference Sources

St. Louis (Mo.) -- Biography - encyclopedia and biographical dictionaries

William Hyde and Howard L. Conard, eds. Encyclopedia of the History of St. Louis: A compendium of history and biography for ready reference (New York; Louisville: The Southern History Company, 1899). Volumes 3&4 have been digitized. SLPL has a copy that can be borrowed. 

Stevens, Walter B. (Walter Barlow), 1848-1939. St. Louis, the fourth city, 1764-1909 (St. Louis : S.J. Clarke Pub. Co., 1909; reprinted by Salem, MA: Higginson Book Co., 2003).

A. N. Marquis, The Book of St. Louisans: A biographical dictionary of leading living men of the city of St. Louis and vicinity 2nd ed. (St. Louis: The St. Louis Republic, 1912).

Cecil Morrison Baskett, Men of Affairs in Saint Louis: A newspaper reference work (St. Louis: Press Club of St. Louis, 1915).

St. Louis (Mo.) -- Bibliography

Gosebrink, Jean E. Meeh, ed. Saint Louis: An annotated bibliography on the city & its area (St. Louis, MO: St. Louis Area Studies Center, St. Louis Public Library, 1991).

Missouri -- Encyclopedias

Encyclopedia of Missouri 2nd ed (St. Clair Shores, MI: Somerset Publishers, 1997) - 2 vols.

Secondary Sources - books and journal articles


Subject Librarian's personal favorites 

McConachie, Alexander Scot, 1942- . The "Big Cinch": A business elite in the life of a city, Saint Louis, 1895-1915 PhD. diss. (St. Louis: Washington University, 1976).

Berger, Henry W. St. Louis & Empire: 250 years of imperial quest & urban crisis (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 2015). eBook or print; fits very well with the course focus on nation-building, especially the middle chapters 

Subject Headings 

St. Louis (Mo.) 

Louisiana Purchase Exposition (1904 : Saint Louis, Mo.)



Missouri Historical Society

The Bulletin, v. 1-36 (Oct. 1944-July 1980); Gateway Heritage journal, v. 1-25 (summer 1980-2005); Gateway magazine, v.26-27 (2005-2007) 

State Historical Society of Missouri

 Missouri Historical Review (Oct. 1906-present)

St. Louis Catholic Historical Society

St. Louis Catholic Historical Review v. 1-5 (Oct. 1918-Oct. 1923)


America: History & Life - a complete bibliographic reference to the history of the United States and Canada from prehistory to the present.

Historical Abstracts - coverage of the world from 1450 to the present (excluding the United States and Canada), from over 2,000 journals published worldwide.


Google Scholar



Primary Sources

WUSTL Libraries Special Collections

1904 World's Fair & Olympics research guide; their 1904 World's Fair collection 

Bound, Print Anthologies

St. Louis (Mo.) -- History -- Sources


St. Louis Post-Dispatch (1874-1922) - St. Louis's longest-running, daily newspaper

St. Louis Argus (digitized, 1915-1926) - African American weekly; microfilm (1915-1996)

St. Louis Republic - 1888-1919; digitized 1900-1905

St. Louis Labor - (1893-1895; 1901-1902; 1907-1930) published by the Socialist Labor Party of Missouri 

Other U.S. newspaper sources

Early American Newspapers - over 1000 U.S. historical newspapers published between 1690 and 1922, including titles from all 50 states, have been digitized. 

Historical American Newspapers (ProQuest) - includes the Atlanta Constitution, Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, Hartford Courant, Los Angeles Times, The New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, St. Louis Post-Dispatch, The Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post. - historical newspapers from the early 1700s into the early 2000s. It contains a diverse blend of well-known regional and local newspapers in the US and other countries, including the St. Louis Globe Democrat (published 1852-1986; digitized 1863-1963).


St. Louis Public Library

Digital Collections 

Special Collections - St. Louis Room (see Adele Heagney or Kirwin Roach), Genealogy Department, and Rare Books and Manuscripts.

fold3 History & Genealogy Archives - especially valuable for Gould's Directories (1863-1923), an early phone directory

Missouri Historical Society

Louisiana Purchase Exposition - online photo collection

State Historical Society of Missouri - St. Louis Research Center

World's Fair Photograph Collection

Research Guides

Mercantile Library

Digital Collections


Hathi Trust a large-scale collaborative repository of digital content from research libraries including content digitized via Google Books and the Internet Archive digitization initiatives, as well as content digitized locally by libraries.

Empire Online - documents relating to Empire Studies. The images are sourced from libraries and archives around the world, including a strong core of document images from the British Library.

Sabin Americana - Works about the Americas published throughout the world from 1500 to the early 1900's. Included are books, pamphlets, serials and other documents that provide original accounts of exploration, trade, colonialism, slavery and abolition, the western movement, Native Americans, military actions and much more. Over 6 million pages from 29,000 works.

Indigenous Peoples: North America - traces the history of Native Peoples in North America from colonial relations in the 1600s to twentieth-century issues such as civil rights. Includes manuscript collections, rare books and monographs, newspapers, periodicals, census records, legal documents, maps, drawings and sketches, oral histories, and photos.