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African American History

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Finding African American Material in DELCAT Discovery

  • DELCAT Discovery uses the term African Americans when referring to black citizens of the United States and blacks when discussing black people internationally.
  • When searching DELCAT Discovery, always start by conducting a keyword search for your specific historical topic, and then broaden your search to find additional material. For example, if you were researching Nat Turner's rebellion, you could search DELCAT Discovery for Nat Turner OR Southampton Insurrection. For additional materials, you could search for slave insurrections.
  • To obtain book-length autobiographies and biographies search DELCAT Discovery using the individual's name as a subject. For example, to locate books about Frederick Douglass, you would type su: douglass frederick
  • To limit your search to primary source materials, conduct a keyword search using words that pertain to the format of the material. Format terms include: correspondence, diaries, letters, manuscripts, narratives, papers, sources and speeches. A sample keyword search: women slaves AND narratives.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

You may browse DELCAT Discovery using specific subject headings related to your topic.. For assistance in selecting headings to locate books, refer to the Library of Congress Subject Headings or use Ask the Library chat service. Below are sample subject headings you might use:

African American soldiers
African American women--Biography
African Americans--Biography
African Americans--Civil rights
African Americans--Politics and suffrage
African Americans--Social conditions
Antislavery movements
Black Panther Party
Black power
Racially mixed people
Segregation in education
Slave insurrections
Slave trade
Slavery in the United States
Slavery in the United States--Condition of slaves
Slaves--Emancipation--United States
Slaves--United States--Biography
Underground railroad
United States. Colored troops
Women slaves