UNB Libraries' Guide to History, African

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Ask a Librarian

  • Photo: Joanne Smyth
  • Joanne Smyth  (profile)
  • Reference Librarian
  • jsmyth@unb.ca
  • 506-453-3516
  • My office is in HIL, Room 316B
  • Subject Specialties:
    History; Political Science; Religious Studies; Catholic Theology; Renaissance College; Human Rights, GRID
  • UNB Libraries

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Primary Sources

There are a number of ways of identifying and locating primary sources for African history. Here are a few:

  1. Use UNB WorldCat's advanced search screen, and combine a keyword search for the event or place along with a subject search for the terms sources, narratives, diaries, or correspondence.
  2. The multi-volume General History of Africa (HIL-GOV TU33 G326ha) inlcudes excellent essays that describe written sources for African history. Use this to identify titles and authors to search for.
  3. Each volume in the Cambridge History of Africa inclues a Bibliographic Essay (near the end), which provides a detailed chronicle of contemporary sources.
  4. A number of free online archives include documents for African history. Some are listed under the Internet Sites tab of this guide.
  5. UNB Libraries have purchased access to a number of online repositories of primary materials. These include:
    1. Medieval Travel Writing
    2. Slavery, Abolition and Social Justice, 1490-2007 
    3. Empire Online
    4. Black Thought and Culture
    5. House of Commons Parliamentary Papers
    6. Oral History Online
    7. ProQuest Historical Newspapers
    8. Times Digital Archive

Find Articles

When searching for journal articles, an indexing and abstracting database or print index is usually the best place to begin. Below are some recommended print indexes and databases for research in African History. For other databases, check the Articles and Research Databases tab on the library website.

Key Resource

  • Historical Abstracts (EBSCO) info

Additional Resources

  • Academic Search Premier info
  • JSTOR Archival Collection info
  • Periodicals Archive Online (PAO - ProQuest) info
  • America: History and Life (EBSCO) info
  • Worldwide Political Science Abstracts info
  • Public Affairs Information Service (PAIS) International and Archive info

How To Guides

How to Search Historical Abstracts and America: History & Life Simultaneously

How to Limit a Search in Historical Abstracts or America: History & Life by Event Date

How to Use Search History to Build Up a Complex Search

How to Use UNB WorldCat to Find Journal Articles

How to find journal articles in JSTOR

Selected e-Journals:

UNB Libraries subscribe to many online and print journals in African History. The following list includes some of them. For others, use the catalogue, UNB WorldCat.

African Archaeological Review

African Economic History

African Historical Studies

French Colonial History

History in Africa

International Journal of African Historical Studies

Journal of African History

Journal of Religion in Africa

Muziki

Reference Sources

When researching a new topic it is often necessary to get an overview, explanations of unfamiliar terms, or brief factual information. The print and electronic resources listed below include selected reference materials (dictionaries, encyclopaedias, handbooks, guides, and standards) for the field of African History. To find additional reference materials, check UNB WorldCat (the library catalogue) or our Reference Materials database. If you would like to try a quick search using Reference Universe, use the box here:

Key Resources

  • General history of Africa [HIL-GOV TU33 G326ha] info
  • Cambridge Histories Online info
  • Cambridge encyclopedia of Africa [HIL-REF DT3 .C35 1981]
  • Encyclopedia of Africa [HIL-REF DT3 .E53 2010] info
  • New encyclopedia of Africa [HIL-REF DT2 .N48 2008] info
  • Encyclopedia of precolonial Africa : archaeology, history, languages, cultures, and environments [HIL-REF DT2 .E53 1997] info
  • Africa and the Americas: culture, politics and history: a multicultural encyclopedia [HIL-REF DT31 .A43 2008] info
  • African political facts since 1945 [HIL-REF DT30 .C594 1991]
  • Africana: the encyclopedia of the African and African American experience [HIL-REF DT14 .A37435 1999] info
  • Encyclopedia of twentieth-century African history
    see also [HIL-REF DT29 .E53 2003] info
  • Historical Dictionary of Civil Wars in Africa [HIL-REF DT21.5 .A76 2008] info

Additional Resources

  • Key events in African history : a reference guide [HIL-REF DT20 .F35 2002] info
  • ARTstor info
  • Smithsonian Global Sound® for Libraries info
  • Blackwell Reference Online info
  • Encyclopedia of African religion [HIL-REF BL2400 .E53 2009] info
  • Credo Reference (formerly Xreferplus) info
  • International Historical Statistics: 1750-2000 [HIL-REF HA155 .M575 2003 ]
  • Oxford Reference info
  • Encyclopedia of African history info

Find Books

To search for books at UNB Libraries, first use the library's online catalogue, UNB WorldCat, which contains materials held at the Harriet Irving, Science and Forestry, Engineering, and Law libraries, as well as the HW Klohn Learning Commons in Saint John. 

Books and other materials not available at UNB may be available for loan from another institution through our document delivery service. To search for materials not held by UNB Libraries, try UNB World Cat, and change the default "UNB Libraries" to "Libraries Worldwide." Once you have identified a title that is not locally held, select the "Request Item through Document Delivery" link.


If you prefer to browse the Stacks, the following call number ranges may be helpful to know:

Subclass DT

 

DT1-3415

History of Africa

DT7-12.25

Description and travel

DT15-16

Ethnography

DT17-39

History

DT43-154

Egypt

DT154.1-159.9

Sudan. Anglo-Egyptian Sudan

DT160-177

North Africa

DT179.2-179.9

Northwest Africa

DT181-346

Maghrib. Barbary States

DT211-239

Libya

DT241-269

Tunisia (Tunis)

DT271-299

Algeria

DT301-330

Morocco

DT331-346

Sahara

DT348-363.3

Central Sub-Saharan Africa

DT365-469

Eastern Africa

DT367-367.8

Northeast Africa

DT371-390

Ethiopia (Abyssinia)

DT391-398

Eritrea

DT401-409

Somalia. Somaliland and adjacent territory

DT411-411.9

Djibouti. French Territory of the Afars and Issas. French Somaliland

DT421-432.5

East Africa. British East Africa

DT433.2-433.29

Uganda

DT433.5-434

Kenya

DT436-449

Tanzania. Tanganyika. German East Africa

DT449.Z2

Zanzibar

DT450-450.49

Rwanda. Ruanda-Urundi

DT450.5-450.95

Burundi

DT468-469

Islands (East African coast)

DT469.M21-.M38

Madagascar

DT469.M39

Mascarene Islands

DT469.M4-.M495

Mautitius (Ile de France)

DT469.M4975

Mayotte

DT469.R3-.R5

Reunion

DT469.S4-.S49

Seychelles

DT470-671

West Africa. West Coast

DT477

Upper Guinea

DT479

Lower Guinea

DT491-516.9

British West Africa

DT507

Ashanti Empire

DT509-509.9

Gambia

DT509.97-512.9

Ghana (Gold Coast)

DT515-515.9

Nigeria

DT516-516.9

Sierra Leone

DT521-555.9

French West Africa. French Sahara. West Sahara. Sahel

DT541-541.9

Benin. Dahomey

DT543-543.9

Guinea

DT545-545.9

Côte d'Ivoire. Ivory Coast

DT546.1-546.49

French-speaking Equatorial Africa

DT546.1-546.19

Gabon (Gaboon, Gabun)

DT546.2-546.29

Congo (Brazzaville). Middle Congo

DT546.3-546.39

Central African Republic. Central African Empire. Ubangi-Shari

DT546.4-546.49

Chad (Tchad)

DT547-547.9

Niger

DT548

West Sahara

DT549-549.9

Senegal

DT551-551.9

Mali. Mali Federation. Sudanese Republic. French Sudan

DT554-554.9

Mauritania

DT555-555.9

Burkina Faso. Upper Volta

DT561-581

Cameroon (Cameroun, Kamerun)

DT582-582.9

Togo. Togoland

DT591-615.9

Portuguese-speaking West Africa

DT613-613.9

Guinea-Bissau. Portuguese Guinea

DT615-615.9

Sao Tome and Principe

DT619-620.9

Spanish West Africa

DT620-620.9

Equatorial Guinea (Spanish Guinea)

DT621-637

Liberia

DT639

Congo (Kongo) River region

DT641-665

Zaire. Congo (Democratic Republic). Belgian Congo

DT669-671

Islands

DT671.C2

Cape Verde

DT1001-1190

Southern Africa

DT1251-1465

Angola

DT1501-1685

Namibia. South-West Africa

DT1701-2405

South Africa

DT2421-2525

Botswana. Bechuanaland

DT2541-2686

Lesotho. Basutoland

DT2701-2825

Swaziland

DT2831-2864

British Central Africa. Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland

DT2871-3025

Zimbabwe. Southern Rhodesia

DT3031-3145

Zambia. Northern Rhodesia

DT3161-3257

Malawi. Nyasaland

DT3291-3415

Mozambique

Find Internet Sites

Internet Sites

Internet African History Sourcebook

Africa Focus, a digitization project of The University of Wisconsin

Belgian Congo Records, from the American Museum of Natural History

Olaudah Equiano: The Interesting Narrative of the Life of Olaudah Equiano, or Gustavus Vassa, the African

Primary Reader in African History, from The University of Virginia

WWW-VL History:

Lists of Primary Sources on African History:

Citing Your Sources

Accurate, properly formatted footnotes, reading lists, and bibliographies are hallmarks of good academic research. Through citing, you acknowledge the source of any ideas you mention in your writing, document your research, and provide the information your readers need to track down your sources.

Numerous citation styles exist, and each specifies what elements are required (title, author, journal name, etc.) and how the citation should be formatted. The standard citation style for History is Chicago, but your instructor may require or recommend that you use another. Consult your course syllabus or check with your instructor to be sure of using the correct citation style for your assignment.

 

Ask A Librarian

Joanne Smyth
Reference Librarian
jsmyth@unb.ca@unb.ca | 506-453-3516
My office is in HIL, Room 316B
Subject Specialties: History; Political Science; Religious Studies; Catholic Theology; Renaissance College; Human Rights, GRID

  • Last modified:  Sep 02, 2014 15:30:30 | Edit Guide