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Databases for West Virginia History Research

WVRHC users may find these databases particularly helpful for their research.
  • WVU students, faculty, and staff can access all of these databases on campus and remotely (login is required for remote access).
  • Non-WVU affiliated users can access all of these databases from the computers in the WVRHC or purchase a Borrower's card to access them on all WVU Libraries' computers. A borrower's card will also allow non-affiliated users to check out books from the WVU Libraries' circulating collection. ArchiveGrid is freely available and may be accessed at the library or from off campus.

A full list of databases available through the WVU Libraries is available on our Databases page. Some databases are also available off campus for WVU Alumni Association members through our Alumni Library Gateway.

Accessible Archives

Primary source material from 18th and 19th century periodicals, particularly useful for civil war and genealogical research. Includes: Godey`s Lady`s Book, The Pennsylvania Gazette, The Charleston Mercury, The New York Herald, Richmond Enquirer, 19th Century African American Newspapers, The 19th Century American County Histories to 1900, The Pennsylvania Newspaper Record: Delaware County, The Industrial Revolution in Delaware County /w Vital Statistics, The Pennsylvania Genealogical Catalogue: Chester County.

America History and Life

Covers North American (US and Canadian) history from prehistory to the present, providing references to journal articles, books, dissertations and reviews. America: History and Life covers over 2,000 journals published worldwide, including all key English-language historical journals and selected historical journals from major countries, state and local history journals.

America's News

Full-text U.S. newspapers, including 26 from West Virginia. Includes staff-written articles, obituaries, editorials, announcements, real estate and other sections.

Ancestry Library Edition

A wide range of resources for genealogical and historical research, including United States Census; military records; court, land and probate records; vital and church records; directories; passenger lists and more.

Archive Finder

A current directory of 5,400 archives and 124,400 collections of primary source material across the US, UK and Ireland, enabling researchers to determine whether a collection contains material useful to their work and find contact information for the repositories. Archive Finder includes the National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections (NUCMC)-- information gathered and indexed by the Library of Congress, covering more than 93,100 collections. It also contains names and detailed subject indexing of over 58,600 collections whose finding aids have been published separately in ProQuest UMI's microfiche series, National Inventory of Documentary Sources in the United States (NIDS). In addition, it provides access to collection descriptions submitted from repositories and links to online finding aids.


ArchiveGrid is a free database that allows searching across hundreds of institutions' special collections records, including the collections of The West Virginia and Regional History Center.

Arts & Humanities Citation Index

Articles from high impact research journals in each field of the humanities, with option for cited reference searching to trace scholarship. (Part of Web of Science)

Chronicling America

Chronicling America provides free access to information about historic newspapers and select digitized newspaper pages, supported by the National Endowment for the Humanities and permanently maintained at the Library of Congress. Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1777-1963 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Users can also access the list of digitized newspapers from West Virginia.

Civil War: Antebellum to Reconstruction, 1843-1877

Primary source documents for research into the American Civil War - provides access to more than 150 newspapers, 50,000 government documents and 4,000 rare broadsides and pieces of ephemera. Extensive local and national coverage of American culture, politics and society during this tumultuous period.

Fold3 (formerly footnote)

Historical documents collections, most never before available before on the Internet, relating to the Revolutionary War, Civil War, WWI, WWII, U S Presidents, historical newspapers and naturalization documents.

HeritageQuest Online

HeritageQuest Online combines digital, searchable images of U S federal census records with the digitized version of the popular UMI® Genealogy and Local History collection. This online database is a collection of unique material for both genealogical hobbyists and professionals.

Find books located in libraries around the world and use links to WVU Library content and services for easy access.