Spotlight on: FBI Files

This is part of an occasional series highlighting some of the digital resources available at the Library that will be of interest to students and staff in History, Classics and Archaeology.

Federal Bureau of Investigation [Public domain]

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) was formed in 1908 by then Attorney General, Charles Bonaparte, under President Theodore Roosevelt. Initially known as the Bureau of Investigation (it added “Federal” in 1935) over the next 110 years the FBI’s remit and influence grew considerably and they are synonymous with American cultural, social and political history in the 20th century and beyond.

The FBI have been involved in a large number of famous, not so famous and infamous cases dealing with organised crime, terrorism, civil rights, white collar crime, espionage, violent crime and more. And did you know that through the Library you have access to a range of digitised files from the FBI?

FBI Files in Archives Unbound

Through the Library’s subscription to Archives Unbound (an enormous digital primary source database) you have access to over 20 collections of digitised material direct from the FBI, covering over 70 years of American history. You’ll spot some famous cases and names within these but possibly also some less known. However, between them they provide a fascinating insight into the political, cultural and social climate of the United States in the 20th century.

FBI File: Julius and Ethel Rosenberg

Julius and Ethel Rosenberg were a nondescript couple accused in 1950 by the U.S. government of operating a Soviet spy network and giving the Soviet Union plans for the atomic bomb. The trial of the Rosenbergs, which began in March 6, 1951, became a political event of greater importance than any damage they may have done to the United States. It was one of the most controversial trials of the 20th century. Their guilt and the harshness of their sentences continue to be vigorously debated to this day. Continue reading

On trial: Archives of Sexuality & Gender

Thanks to a request from staff and students in HCA the Library currently has trial access to the Archives of Sexuality & Gender from Gale. This fully searchable digital archive spans the 16th to 21st century and is the largest digital collection of primary source material relating to the history and study of sex, sexuality and gender.

You can access this digital resource via the E-resources trials page.
Access is available both on and off-campus.

Trial access ends 18th March 2019.

Archives of Sexuality & Gender include documentation covering social, political, health and legal issues impacting LGBTQ communities around the world, as well as rare and unique books on sex and sexuality from the sciences to the humanities, providing a window into how sexuality and gender roles were viewed and changed over time. The types of documents covered include periodicals, newsletters, manuscripts, government records, organizational papers, correspondence, posters, books and other materials. Continue reading

New to the Library: The Baltimore Afro-American

I’m happy to let you know that the Library now has access to the digital archive of The Baltimore Afro-American (1893-1988) from ProQuest Historical Newspapers. Founded in 1892 it is the most widely circulated black newspaper on the Atlantic coast and the longest-running family-owned African American newspaper in the United States.

You can access The Baltimore Afro-American (1893-1988) via the Databases A-Z list and Newspapers & Magazines database list. You can also access the title through DiscoverEd* Continue reading

On trial: Argentina, 1975-1980: The Making of U.S. Human Rights Policy

Thanks to a request from student in HCA the Library currently has trial access to Argentina, 1975-1980: The Making of U.S. Human Rights Policy, just one of the primary source collections from Digital National Security Archive (DNSA) published by ProQuest. This collection chronicles the development of U.S. policy as it attempts to deal with the tragedy experienced in Argentina during the critical, formative period of the late 1970’s.

You can access the database via the E-resources trials page. Access is available both on and off-campus.

Trial access ends 19th December 2018.

It was a turbulent and traumatic time in Argentina in the late 1970s, featuring a political collapse verging on civil war; a military coup; and massive illegal detentions, torture and kidnappings. Argentina, 1975-1980 comprises 2,429 documents and these documents show U.S. officials grappling with human rights violations on a scale never heard of in the Western Hemisphere, underscored by the dramatic disappearance of tens of thousands of people at the hands of the security forces. Continue reading

First World War: through our Library resources

This weekend, Sunday 11th November, marks the 100th anniversary of the end of the First World War. In this week’s blog post I have pulled together just a small selection of Library resources, digital and physical, that will help you explore the First World War, the events leading up to it and the aftermath.

“Armistice Day: The Scene outside Buckingham Palace after the End of the Fighting Had Been Announced.” Illustrated London News [London, England] 16 Nov. 1918: n.p. Available from Illustrated London News Historical Archive.

What did the papers say?

Screenshot of front page from The Daily Mirror, Wednesday, August 5, 1914. Available from UK Press Online.

During the war the British Government tried to strictly control reporting on events, particularly from the front line. Legislation was passed in 1914 which allowed the War Office to censor the press and at first journalists had to go undercover to try and report on what was happening. Even when the Government relented and agreed to send accredited British war correspondents to the front line their reports were still heavily censored and were often overt propaganda, with actual facts about events never being reported (see reporting or non-reporting on the Battle of the Somme as an example).

The Library subscribes to a large number of digitised newspaper archives that will allow you to see what events were being reported on at the time and how they were being reported. Read full text articles, compare how different newspapers were covering the same issues and stories and track coverage of the First World War from the escalating hostilities prior to the outbreak to its conclusion and aftermath. Continue reading

On trial: African American Newspapers and Times-Picayune

Thanks to a request from a student in HCA the Library currently has trial access to two newspaper databases from Readex, African American Newspapers, Series 1, 1827-1998 and New Orleans Times-Picayune (1837-1922). Between them giving you access to around 170 years of newspaper archives and useful if you’re looking at African American history, American history, the Antebellum South, the Civil Rights movement and more.

You can access both databases via the E-resources trials page. Access is available both on and off-campus.

Trial access ends 30th November 2018. Continue reading

On trial: Women’s Magazine Archive

Thanks to request from a student in HCA the Library currently has trial access to ProQuest’s Women’s Magazine Archive, collection I and II. This unique database comprises archival runs of leading women’s consumer magazines of the twentieth century.

You can access the database via the E-resources trials page.
Access is available on-campus. For off-campus access you must be connected to the VPN.

Trial access ends 14th November 2018. Continue reading

New to the Library: Service Newspapers of World War Two

I’m really pleased to let you know that following a successful trial the Library now has access to Service Newspapers of World War Two from Adam Matthew Digital, a brand new digitised primary source collection just released this year. This resource gives you unique insight into the story of war as told by the newspapers and magazines that brought information, entertainment and camaraderie to the forces.

You can access Service Newspapers of World War Two via the Databases A-Z list and Newspapers & Magazines database list. You can also access it through DiscoverEd.

Service Newspapers of World War Two contains an extensive range of both rare and well-known wartime publications for soldiers serving in major theatres around the world. Publications are included from many key nations involved in the conflict, such as the US, Canada, New Zealand, India, and the countries of Europe, Africa and the Middle East. Both Allied and Axis publications are presented, offering a broad view of the war and the experiences of those on its front lines. Continue reading

New to the Library: The SHAFR Guide Online

Thanks to a request from staff in HCA the Library now has access to The SHAFR Guide Online: An Annotated Bibliography of U.S. Foreign Relations since 1600. This is a near-comprehensive, 2.1 million-word online annotated bibliography of historical work covering the entire span of U.S. foreign relations.

You can access The SHAFR Guide Online via the Databases A-Z list, History database list and other relevant subject database lists. You’ll soon also be able to access it via DiscoverEd.

The SHAFR Guide Online covers all eras in U.S. history from colonial days onwards.

It also includes four new thematic chapters—on economic issues; non-governmental actors; domestic issues, the Congress, and public opinion; and race, gender, and culture.

Created by the Society for Historians of American Foreign Relations (SHAFR), entries in the guide are drawn from many sources, from collections of government documents to biographies, monographs, book chapters, journal articles, web sites, and more.

Access The SHAFR Guide Online via the Databases A-Z list, History database list and other relevant subject database lists.

Access is only available to current students and staff at the University of Edinburgh.

Caroline Stirling – Academic Support Librarian for History, Classics and Archaeology

New to the Library: New York Amsterdam News

I’m delighted to let you know that following a successful trial in 2017/18 the Library has now purchased access to the New York Amsterdam News (1922-1993) from ProQuest Historical Newspapers. Founded in 1909 this is one of the leading Black newspapers of the 20th century and the oldest and largest Black newspaper in New York City.

You can access New York Amsterdam News (1922-1993) via the Databases A-Z list and Newspapers & Magazines database list. You can also access the title through DiscoverEd*

The Amsterdam News was founded over 100 years ago by James H. Anderson and was named after the street where he lived and where the first issues were produced and sold. It was one of only 50 Black newspapers in the United States at that time. Continue reading