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FRE 385: Roseau

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Searching with Google

There are many more archives in the world than there are digital archives. Digitizing materials takes a long time and certain materials are prioritized over others. That being said, digital archives also tend to be a part of traditional memory institutions — universities, museums, archives, historical societies, etc.

Google is an amazing search tool, but often it can be more difficult to find obscure resources. That being said, it can definitely help in your search for Digital Archives. Below are some strategies that can help:

  • Topical searches — If you have a general area of interest for your topic, it will not be enough to search just for the subject term. Many librarians from around the world create online "LibGuides" for university classes that specialize in specific topics. Including "libguide" as a search term with your topics can help you discover a more curated list of academic resources. Including terms like "digital archive," "digital library," or "special collections" can also be helpful.
  • Search for memory institutions — Many times geographic proximity is a good indication of who has the records for a specific person or on a specific topic. With that in mind, you can search for universities, museums, historical societies, etc. around the specific area you are interested in or where the people might have lived. This is only a general rule of thumb and sometimes papers land in unexpected locations.
  • Search for names of individuals — If you are interested in doing research on someone famous or important to a historical event, many times their writings or papers will be donated to a specific institution. When searching for names include other terms like "papers," "collection," or even "project" to help find potential online versions of their works.

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