Cities, Schools, and Space

Spring 2014

Listed in: Special Seminar, as COLQ-332; Andy Anderson (Section 01)Hilary J. Moss (Section 01)

Questions about research in this course? Contact Dunstan C. McNutt.

  • Databases
  • Reference
  • Full Text
  • Data
  • Primary Sources
  • Web Resources

Databases: Find articles, book chapters, e-books

Alt-PressWatch (1970 to present)
Full-text newspapers, magazines, and journals of the alternative and independent press.

Alternative Press Index (1969 to present)
Covers alternative, radical and left periodicals, newspapers and magazines.

Ethnic NewsWatch (1959 to present)
News and analysis from ethnic popular and scholarly publications.

International Bibliography of the Social Sciences (IBSS) (1951 to present)
Indexes about 3,000 journals and 7,000 books per year.

Search thousands of library catalogs for books and more.

Ancestry Library 
Access to more than 1.2 billion names, primary source documents, census records, and images and a variety of genealogical and historical research features.

Discover: Start here for books, articles & more 
Simultaneously search research databases plus the Five Colleges Libraries Catalog to find full-text articles, books and more.

ERIC (1966 to present)
Covers research documents, journal articles, technical reports, program descriptions and evaluations, and curricular materials in the field of education.

America: History & Life (1964 to present) 
Covers the world's scholarly literature on the history and culture of the United States and Canada.

LEXIS-NEXIS Academic Universe (date coverage varies)
Full-text federal and state laws, international legal materials, and law reviews. Also newspapers and business information.

PAIS International (1972 to present)
Coverage of articles, selected books, government documents, research reports, etc., from a wide range of social sciences.

Political Science Abstracts (1975 to present)
Covers international journals in political science and its complementary fields.


Chicago Manual of Style
Provides answers to style and editing questions.

Encyclopedia of African American History, 1896 to the present
Essays on all aspects of recent African American history: people, events, places, etc.

Gale Virtual Reference Library
70 reference e-books, including multivolume works like the Encyclopedia of Religion, American Decades, and more.

International Encyclopedia of the Social and Behavioral Sciences
Scholarly surveys of all aspects of social sciences.

International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences
Covers scholarship and fields in the social sciences.

Full Text Collections

America's Historical Newspapers (1690-1980) 
Searchable archive of American newspapers including Early American Newspapers, Series 1,2, and 5 (1690-1922) and Hispanic American Newspapers (1808-1980).

Historical Newspapers (ProQuest) 
Combined search of the historic Boston Globe, Chicago Defender, Chinese Newspaper Collection, Los Angeles Times, New York Amsterdam News, New York Times, Times of India, and Washington Post.


Historical Statistics of the United States
Standard source for quantitative information about the U.S., updated and includes 37,000 data series.

Social Explorer (1790 to present)
Access to data from the U.S. Census, American Community Survey, religious congregations, and other sources, with options to create thematic and interactive maps and reports.

Statistical Insight (ProQuest)
Searches U.S. federal government (1974-present), international intergovernmental (1983-present), state government and privately published documents (1981-present) that contain statistics. Many tables are available online as images or Excel files.

Statistical Abstract of the United States 
Provides statistical tables and charts covering various aspects of social, political and economic conditions of the United States.

U.S. Government Information


A good starting place for finding U.S. statistical information by subject, agency, or geography. Take a look at both the mapstats and the statistics by geography from U.S. Agencies sections here!

U.S. Department of Education - National Center for Education Statistics

This page lists various surveys and programs administered by NCES.

U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development

State of the Cities Data Systems (SOCDS)

The SOCDS provides data for individual Metropolitan Areas, Central Cities, and Suburbs.

U.S. Census Bureau's American Fact finder

Source for population, housing, economic, and geographic data for places in the United States.

Primary Sources

Ancestry Library Edition
Access to more than 1.2 billion names, primary source documents, census records, and images and a variety of genealogical and historical research features.

Primary-source collection descriptions from WorldCat records and archival finding aids.

U.S. Congressional Serial Set (1817-1976)
Reports, documents and journals of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives. Preceded by American State Papers.

Primary Sources Research Guide (Frost Library)

Web Resources

State and Local Government Information


Commonwealth of Massachusetts
The home page of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts with links to the web sites of state agencies, and to statistical information on cities and towns in Massachusetts. There is also online access to many of the publications and databases of the Commonwealth, including laws, regulations, and statistics. Some highlights of this web site:
City of Boston
The home page of the City of Boston provides information about the programs and activities of the Mayor's Office, city departments (listed under "city services"), and the City Council.

Boston redevelopment authority website 


City of Cambridge website

Cambridge, MA list of city department websites

HUD State of the Cities Data System (SOCDS), Data for Cambridge

Archives, libraries and information resources for the city of Cambridge

Cambridge Archive Project

This site provides information on archival collections related to the City of Cambridge and the people, places and organizations that have called Cambridge home. The site has two primary functions: First to inform people who are interested in doing research on what collections exist and where they can be found and second to allow people who are interested in making a donation of material to compare the policies and strengths of different institutions to determine what organization will be the best home for their material.

Cambridge Buildings and Architects by Christopher Hail. 
This comprehensive database, created by Hail when he was a librarian at Harvard's Graduate School of Design, lists Cambridge buildings by street, including the style of the building (i.e., three-decker), when it was built and by who, and any structural changes. There is also an alphabetical listing of personal names of architects and the names of buildings. Available for download are high quality, color images of select Cambridge houses and buildings. Also included are Harvard University buildings located outside of Cambridge.

Cambridge Historical Society and its library page

Cambridge Public Library and its genealogy and local history page

MIT Libraries Institute Archives and Special Collections