SSC 6615: 20th Century U.S. Presidency

Books in the Main Stacks

To locate books you can borrow, use the Library’s catalog to search for your president as a subject, such as “Kennedy, John F.”

Citing Your Resources

Doing ethical research means citing sources. It is critical to credit writers for their work and their contributions to your research. To not do so is unethical and leads to plagiarism - unintentionally or not. Here are some sources to help you cite properly and to avoid the problem of plagiarism.

  • Citation of Sources
    This lists citation engines which help you create proper citations as well as providing information on different citation styles.
  • Tips on avoiding plagiarism
  • Turnitin
    Turnitin is a service that faculty and students use to detect and avoid plagiarism in their writing.
  • NoodleBib
    NoodleBib is an online resource that will help you format MLA and APA bibliographies, exporting them directly to your word processing program.

Dictionaries & Encyclopedias

Elections and Parties

Kurian, G.T. (1997). The encyclopedia of the Republican party and The encyclopedia of the Democratic party. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, Inc. Everything you’ve ever wanted to know about the parties, including history, issues, and brief biographies of major players. Conventions and elections are included as well. Specific topics are accessible via general, biographical, and geographic indexes. Supplements cover 1996–2000 elections.
Reference JK 2352 .E56 1997 v.1–3

Mieczkowski, Y. (2001). Routledge historical atlas of presidential elections. New York: Routledge, 2001. Created by Dowling College’s own Dr. Mieczkowski, this volume provides an overview of each presidential election and a chart illustrating electoral votes. Elections are presented chronologically from George Washington to George W. Bush’s first term.
Reference JK 524 .M53 2001

Historical and Cultural Background

Brinkley, A., & Dyer, D. (Eds.). (2000). The reader’s companion to the American presidency. Boston: Houghton Mifflin. This collection of essays creates a “narrative history of our chief executives and their administrations against the backdrop of America’s social, cultural, and economic times.” Includes some illustrations and timelines.
Reference E 176.1.R295 2000

Kulter, S.I. (Ed.). (2003). Dictionary of American history. New York: Charles Scribner’s Sons. If you need a quick description of an event or a brief biography, this is the place to get it. Entries cover facts, events, trends, policies, and persons. Some maps, photos, and primary source documents (v.9) are also included.
Reference E 174 .D52 2003 v.1–10

Mancall, P.C. (Ed.). (2003). Encyclopedia of American History. New York: Facts on File. This set provides articles on individuals, events, and topics in U.S. history. Entries are written by historians. Each essay is cross-referenced and includes a short bibliography for further reading. Specific topics can be located via the index.
Reference E 174 .E53 2003 v. 1–11

Ragsdale, L. (1996). Vital statistics on the presidency: Washington to Clinton. Washington, DC: Congressional Quarterly, Inc. This volume provides a “statistical description of the American presidency” arranged in nifty tables. Topics include: presidents and their previous positions; number of public appearances; approval ratings; budget allocations; executive orders; and more. The index can bring you directly to the information you need.
Reference JK 518 .R34 1996

Shade, W.G., & Campbell, B.C. (2003). American presidential campaigns and elections. Armonk, NY: M.E. Sharpe, Inc. This introduction to the electoral process provides a chronology, election highlights, vote counts, and a few primary source documents from the 1788–89 to 2000 elections. General and biographical indexes are included.
Reference JK 1965 .A57 2002 v.1–3

Thompkins, V. (Ed.). (1994-). American decades. Detroit, MI: Gale Research, Inc. Each volume focuses on a decade in American history (from 1900–1999) and highlights significant events, the economy, education, technology, law, politics, and popular culture. This set is useful for providing a context for 20th Century presidencies.
Reference E 169.12 .A419 (10 vols.)

Writing Guides

Rampolla, M.A. (2007). A pocket guide to writing in history. 5th ed. Boston: Bedford/St. Martin’s Press. Rampolla provides good advice for evaluating sources, conducting research, writing a apaper, and properly documenting sources. This volume also includes a list of useful reference resources and web sites for locating primary sources. Reference and Main Stacks D 13. R295 2007

Find Subject Articles

Primary Sources


Microfilm for the following titles are available in the library on the Oakdale Campus:

Business Week: 1929 -

Economist: 1843 - 1997

Nation: 1865 - 1996

New Republic: 1960 - 1996

New York Times: 1950 - 2006 For more articles, see the New York Times Historical Papers database.

Newsweek: 1933 - 2001

Time: 1923 - 2002 For more articles, visit Time magazine’s online archive.

Wall Street Journal: 1965 - For more articles, see the Wall Street Journal database.

Many multi-subject and news databases provide full-text articles from approximately 1980 to present.

Print Indexes

New York Times Index (1851–2005) Available in Oakdale Reference.

Reader’s Guide to Periodical Literature (1890–1992) Available in Oakdale Reference.

Other Primary Sources

Messages and Papers of the Presidents (George Washington to Calvin Coolidge) Reference J 81 .B96g

Public Papers of the Presidents (Herbert Hoover to George W. Bush) Reference J 80 .A283

Papers from the administrations of George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush are also available online.

State of the Union Messages of the Presidents (George Washington to Lyndon Johnson) Reference J 87 .N717

Web Sites

Public Papers of the Presidents Browse or search (by subject or keyword) the papers of George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush.

Presidential Libraries Many presidential libraries have made some research materials available online.

National Archives and Records Administration Here you’ll find access to a variety of online resources and research tools.

Library of Congress: American Memory This collection provides digitized resources organized by topic, including a category related to “Presidents.”

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Last Modified on March 22, 2011, at 08:08 AM by Lisa Esposito

Last updated March 22, 2011, at 08:08 AM by Lisa Esposito