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History 1613: Home

A guide to library resources for History 1613, Western Civilization, taught by Dr. Emily Graham in the fall of 2016

Researchng Medieva History

This guide covers resources for research on medieval history using the BOSS catalog system and a specialized database for journal articles, the International Medieval Bibliography (IMB).

Guide URL:

Finding Books using BOSS

Use the BOSS catalog system ( to search for books in the OSU Library Collection.  Enter your search terms (logging in with your O-Key credentials first to make sure you get all the resources we have in print and e-book format), and then click on the Books and Media tab to limit to books. If you select Subject for your search, you will search for books using terms in the Library of Congress Subject Headings (more precise than keywords).  NOTE: to avoid books of historical fiction, check to make sure the book is in the 940s if a physical book, or click on Details to see the subject headings, and make sure they don't have "Fiction" in them.  Below is a search for books on the history of the Franks/Frankish Kingdom:

For physical books in the Library, click on Get It to find out if they are on the shelf ("Item in place") or checked out, and View It for e-books available online--you will then get the link to click on to access the e-book.  Multiple Versions means we have both physical and e-book copies of that title.

Other book etc., searching resources:

 An extensive-book collection of scanned books, both older public domain books and some newer ones.  Click on the Log In button the upper right-hand side of the homepage and then select Oklahoma State University; log in with your O-Key email and password. You can search for e-books by keyword, author, title, date, etc.  

Searches catalogs of most North American and European libraries. Books we own will be marked, but for others not in our collection, click on the link to the record and go to External Resources: Borrow from Another Library. From there, log in to the ILLiad interlibrary loan system with your O-Key email and password, then the form should be filled out for you.  Click Submit at the bottom of the page.

Has the full text of US dissertations from 1997 to the present, and some older ones as well (OSU dissertations from 1961 to the present).

Contains electronic Masters' theses as well as Dissertations from OSU (Dissertations from 1961 to the present as in Digital Dissertations).


Searching for Articles in Internat'l Mevieval Bibliography (IMB)

The International Medieval Bibliography (IMB) is specialized database for finding scholarly journal articles on medieval history. IMB does not have the full text of articles, but many will be available in full text from other databases to which the OSU Library subscribes. 

To search IMB and see if the full text of an article is available, on the Library homepage go to FIND ARTICLES, click on Databases, and the to to "I" to choose the International Medieval Bibliography. Go then to Advanced Search.  Keep Articles selected at the top (only), and in the search box type the keywords.  IMB will find subject terms they use that match them and will give you suggestions; choose the one most relevant to your topic.  For example, to find articles on King Clovis of the Franks, type Clovis and IMB will give you its subject term:

On the results page, when you see an article that looks promising, click on the "Get Article" button (or click on the title to get more information on the articles, then click on the Get Article button on that page).

A new webpage or browser tab will open from BOSS, and if we have full text from another database, the link will appear there to the database with the article text (click it).

Then another webpage/tab from the other database will open with the article or a link to the full text or the PDF full text of the article.

Some articles will be chapters in books; if we have the book, when you click on the Get Article it will bring up the book catalog record with the call number:

Finally, if OSU does not have the article in a database or in a book we own, click on Get Article, and then the Sign in for More Options link on the page that comes up; then you will be able to access links to interlibrary loan (Request this Article or Request this Book).

Other Databases for Finding Journal Articles, etc.

Below are the key subject databases to search for journal articles (as well as books, book chapters, and other publications) on historical topics.  Many of the databases have full-text journal articles, but if the full text is not available, click on the Article Linker link ().  If another database from the OSU Library has the full text of the article, it will be displayed in a new window or a link to it will appear.  If an article is not available online from another database, you can get a copy of the article from interlibrary loan.  Make sure you are logged in, then click on the "Journal/Article Request" link and go the Interlibrary Services page that comes up (you will also need to log into that system).  The article citation information will automatically appear in the interlibrary loan form.  Click the "Submit" button, and you will receive an email when your article is available, usually within 48 hours.

You will need to log in with your OSU email address and O-Key password to access these databases off-campus.  Click HERE to log in.

Note: You can use the BOSS search engine to search several databases at once (search Everything and select Articles), but its coverage is not complete, so search the individual databases listed below first.