This is UCLan's History library page.

For more help and guidance please contact your Faculty Librarians: Julie Hitchen and Francesca Robinson


Search for books and ebooks on the Library Search. It will tell you what we have in stock and where to find it.
Sometimes there may only be a chapter on a specific topic rather than a whole book. To find those, you will need to use one of our ebook databases which allow you to search through the whole text of a book. We have several ebook collections but a good place to start would be Ebook Central.

Other collections relevant to history include:

  • JISC Historic Texts
    Books published prior to 1800 can be accessed from EEBO - Early English Books Online, and ECCO - Eighteenth Century Collections Online which are combined in the JISC Historic Texts Collection.  A selection of 65,000 nineteenth century titles are also included.
  • Oxford Dictionary of National Biography
    Within this resource you can find over 50,000 biographies from the 4th century BC to the year 2000. A breakdown of themes provides a valuable reference to British History with links to relevant biographies.

Special Collections

The library holds several unique collections of material which could also be of use to History Students. These Special Collections include:

  • Livesey Collection - The British National Temperance League collection
  • Local Collection – Material which is related to Preston and the surrounding area is located on the inside of the book ring unit on the first floor.
  • Shepherd Street Mission - A small collection of items from the Mission established in Preston by the Band of Hope in 1876. The mission rescued street children and provided temporary accommodation for homeless adults; one of its original objectives was to "assist children to emigrate".
  • Wainwright Collection - Donated to the University by the Wainwright Conservative Club in Blackpool. The collection comprises largely late Victorian political texts covering topics such as home-rule for Ireland, labour relations and free trade.
  • William Woodruff Collection - The collection of the celebrated Lancashire academic and author William Woodruff, together with 40 articles written by him.

For access to the Special Collections you will need to make an appointment.

Journals and Articles

The Library Search will tell you which print journals we have in stock whilst Journal Finder provides details of our e-journals. However, neither of them will tell you which articles are in each journal: for that, you’ll need to use one of our databases.

Library Search and ProQuest Central are good places to start as they search across lots of different journals and will uncover articles in places you may not think to look.

eResources and Databases

If you want to search for journal articles on a particular topic within the History subject discipline, the main electronic databases to search are:

  • Bibliography of British and Irish History
    Provides bibliographic data on historical writings concerning the British Isles, the British Empire and the Commonwealth from 55BC to the present.
  • Historical Abstracts
    Covering the history of the world (excluding the United States and Canada) from 1450-present, including world history, military history, women's history, history of education, and more. Indexes over 2,300 academic historical journals back to 1955.
  • Humanities International Complete
    Use in conjunction with Historical Abstracts to cover a wider range of material. Journals indexed here include those relevant to the historical study of the United States and Canada.
    An archive of older journal issues covering many relevant areas.
  • Taylor & Francis Journal Collection
    Full text access to Journals in the Arts & Humanities published by Taylor & Francis.         

Other smaller collections, that are either subject specific, or based on a single publishers output, are also worth searching. These include

Journal Archives

Our Journal Archive titles can be found on the Electronic Journal A-Z, but you will need to use the archive to search for content across the whole collection.

  • British Periodicals - These trace the growth and development of the periodical press in Britain from its origins in the seventeenth century to the Victorian age and beyond.
  • Brill - A multi disciplinary archive of over 80 Journals published before 2000
  • Nineteenth Century UK Periodicals Online - Provides access to nearly 100 periodicals for the study of British life in the 19th century - from women, to sport, to children and humour.
  • Periodicals Archive Online Collection - 80 full text journals from 1891-2000, covering a variety of subject areas.
  • Wellesley Index to Victorian Periodicals - An index to the authorship of articles, and a bibliography of articles written by each contributor, and using each pseudonym.

Top Tip! Don't forget - if we haven't got the full-text of an article that you would like to access (in print or electronic format) you can make a request through the Inter-Library Loan/Document Supply Service

Abstract & Indexing Databases

Should you want to undertake a more thorough search for research materials/literature try searching the following abstract and indexing databases. These contain a large number of references from a significant number of subject areas. You will need to choose your search terms carefully to be sure of retrieving the best results. Generally you will only find the abstract or executive summary of articles within these databases. Conference papers are also available too.

News Intelligence 

  • Nexis - a full-text database of news drawn from over 29,000 sources. These sources include local, regional and national newspapers, newsletters, magazines and trade journals, newswires, broadcast transcripts, company news databases, government documents, legislation and legal journals. Coverage of American papers The New York Times (from 1980 full text and from 1969 abstracts only) and The Washington Post (from 1977) can be found here.
    Nexis gives the text of articles only - it does not include photographs or formatting.

Newspaper archives

  • The Guardian and The Observer Historical Archive - Every page as published. The Guardian from 1821-2003, The Observer from 1791-2003
  • Times Digital Archive - Every page as published from 1785-2011
  • New York Times Archive - The New York Times (1851-2008) with Index (1851-1993) provides easily searchable first-hand accounts and unparalleled coverage of the politics, society and events of the time
  • Daily Mail Historical Archive - More than 100 years of this major UK national newspaper can be viewed in full digital facsimile format, with advertisements, news stories and images that capture 20th century culture and society.
  • Economist Historical Archive - Digitised archive from 1843-2006
  • British Newspapers 1600-1900 - 3 million pages of historic newspapers, newsbooks & ephemera. The Burney Newspaper Collection and 19th Century British Newspapers are included in this service.
  • Illustrated London News Historical Archive - The entire run of the paper from 1842-2003
  • Picture Post Historical Archive - Picture Post’s innovative use of photo-journalism captured the imagination of the British people. In the era before television, it became the window on the world for ordinary people, bringing the major social and political issues of the day into popular consciousness.
  • The Telegraph Historical Archive (1855-2000) – More than 100 years of this major UK national newspaper can be viewed in full digital facsimile format, with advertisements, news stories and images that capture 19th -21st century culture and society.

Top Tip! To search across a collection of the newspaper archives that the library holds use Artemis Primary Sources. From here you will be able to cross search some of our newspaper archives.

Television, Film and Sound

  • Alexander Street Video
    Videos, films, documentaries and training materials in history related areas
  • Box of Broadcasts provides access to off air TV and radio programmes in an expanding archive with no expiry date.  It also allows you to create clips from programmes for sharing with others.
  • Foreign Broadcast Information Service, 1974–1996, is a multidisciplinary resource consisting of translated broadcasts, news agency transmissions, newspapers, periodicals, and government statements from nations around the globe.


  • John Johnson Collection - the digitised collection of more than 65,000 items drawn from the Bodleian's John Johnson Collection of printed ephemera.
  • Burney Newspaper Collection - Also includes pamphlets, newspapers and books collected before 1817
  • British Labour History Ephemera (Microfilm) - 1880-1926 - A collection of more than 2000 pamphlets, leaflets and other ephemera of British labour history. A full list of the contents can be viewed by searching on the library catalogue. This gives a link to the index which has been scanned. Access to the collection is available on request.
  • Papers of the American Board of Commissioners for Foreign Missions (Microfilm) Missions to Asia, 1812-1919. This collection provides primary source material from the missions to India in the 19th century. Access to the microfilm is available on request. Most of the papers are also freely available from the Digital Library for International Research.
  • 19th Century British Pamphlets - Over 26,000 pamphlets from seven collections covering subjects such as politics, industry, colonial affairs, slavery, Ireland, poor law. Access is via JSTOR. Browse by subject, then history, then Pamphlets to see the different collections

Government and Legal Information

  • HeinOnline English Reports - (1220-1867) - A collection of the decisions of the English Courts prior to the commencement of the Law Reports in 1865
  • House of Commons Parliamentary Papers - Fully indexed and searchable full-text House of Commons Parliamentary Paper from 1715 to present. Some supplementary material back to 1688.
  • Proceedings of the Old Bailey -  transcripts of the trials from 1674-1913 are easily accessed from this resource.  They provide information on a huge range of topics - crime, justice and punishment; community histories; gender roles; transport; cost of living in London and more.

Our Electronic Resources section provides details of all our online resources and includes an E-Databases A-Z list.

Web Pages

  • People’s History Museum. Located in Manchester the People's History Museum collections relate to the history of working people in Britain. These include 18th and 19th century political cartoons, 1500 political posters relating to the Spanish Civil War and to the Labour Party, some 3000 badges from a variety of organisations and an important collection of political tokens and medals. Search the collections and find out more about the museum through the website.
  • Queen Victoria's Journals. Princess Victoria of Kent began the first volume of her Journal, or detailed diary, in 1832, and continued writing them until her death in 1901. As well as detailing household and family matters, the journals reflect affairs of state, describe meetings with statesmen and other eminent figures, and comment on the literature of the day. They represent a valuable primary source for scholars of nineteenth century British political and social history and for those working on gender and autobiographical writing. It is freely available to users within the United Kingdom.
  • Charles Booth's London. LSE has just launched Charles Booth’s London, a website making available the famous poverty maps and the descriptively rich police notebooks arising from Booth’s ground-breaking study Inquiry Into the Life and Labour of the People in London (1886-1903).
  • Slavery in American and the World - Includes every statute passed by every colony and state on slavery, every federal statute dealing with slavery, and all reported state and federal cases on slavery.
  • The Ireland Collection (or Digital Library of Core E-Resources on Ireland0. This collection from JSTOR provides access to a comprehensive, multi–disciplinary digital library of research materials relating to Ireland, spanning the 18th century to present. Here is the full list of titles.

Maps, Census and Population Information

  • The National Archives - provides a searchable index of census reports from 1841-1911. However there is a charge to download and view full transcriptions.
  • The Lancashire Library Service has a subscription to Ancestry.co.uk, which you can access if you join the Lancashire Library Service. You can use this within any Lancashire Library - but you will need to book a computer at the library. This service provides access to all the Census records.
  • Digimap - an online service that allows users to view and create maps of any location in Great Britain using Ordnance Survey map data. Users can also download Ordnance Survey map data for use in other software packages, such as Geographical Information Systems (GIS), drawing software and CAD. Also included are the Historic, Geology, Marine, Environment, Aerial and Global collections.

Julie Hitchen

Faculty Librarian for Culture and the Creative Industries

01772 892267

Francesca Robinson

Assistant Faculty Librarian for Culture and the Creative Industries

01772 895132