How to Find Digitized Publications – Part II

In our post on “How to Find Digitized Publications”, we promised to  share more recommendations from our reference specialists about where to find digitized publications. The following sources point to a wealth of  publications from across Canada and from specific regions.

CANADA-WIDE SOURCES

Internet Archive – Text Archive [http://archive.org/details/texts]
The Internet Archive Text Archive contains a wide range of historical texts, academic books, government publications, fiction, popular books and children’s
books. The Internet Archive includes many digitized federal government and parliamentary publications from Library and Archives Canada’s collection.

  • Tip:
    Once you have found a work of interest, you can then use full-text searching options provided by the website.

Canadiana Discovery Portal [http://search.canadiana.ca/]
The Canadiana Discovery Portal allows you to search the digitized collections of libraries, archives and museums from across Canada. The Portal includes a
wide range of historical materials such as books, journals, newspapers, government documents, photographs, and maps.

Our Roots: Canada’s Local Histories Online [http://www.ourroots.ca/]
Our Roots is a wonderful resource for family history research. This extensive collection of digitized local histories, including historical publications,
from across the country permits full-text searches for family names, place names and events.

REGIONAL SOURCES

Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec – Digital Collection
[http://www.banq.qc.ca/collections/collection_numerique/index.html?language_id=1]
Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec offers extensive collections of digitized materials including newspapers, magazines, municipal directories,
books and musical scores, reference works, maps and plans, and images.

  • Tip:
    The Municipal Directories collection
    [http://www.banq.qc.ca/collections/collection_numerique/index.html?categorie=1]includes the Lovell’s Montréal directories starting in 1842.

Peel’s Prairie Provinces [http://peel.library.ualberta.ca/index.html]
Peel’s Prairie Provinces is an indispensable research resource on Western Canada and its history. It includes a bibliography with over 7000 fully searchable digitized books [http://peel.library.ualberta.ca/bibliography/], many dating back to the earliest days of exploration in the region.

Island Archives.ca at the University of Prince Edward Island [http://islandarchives.ca/]
A growing repository of records and images held in Prince Edward Island’s libraries and museums. Of particular interest are the digitized newspapers [http://islandarchives.ca/inewspapers] and maps [http://islandarchives.ca/imaps].

Questions or comments? We would love to hear from you!

How to Find Digitized Publications

Now, more than ever, you can access print publications online. The trick is finding them. So, our reference specialists at Library and Archives Canada (LAC) offer the following tips to help you discover published works that are just a click away!

Library Search

Get started with our Library Search tool. Just follow these easy steps to find Canadian published materials digitized by LAC and other libraries across the country.

  1. Go the Library Advanced Search screen.
  2. Select the Title Keyword search option and enter keywords from the title of a book that interests you.
  3. Search in: Canadian Libraries.
  4. From the Format dropdown menu, select Online.
  5. Click the Submit button. This will open a new page with your search results.
  6. Select any relevant search result to access the full record with the description of the book.
  7. Click on the link in the description to access the digitized version of the book.

Early Canadiana Online

Our reference specialists recommend the Early Canadiana Online (ECO) [www.eco.canadiana.ca/?usrlang=en] digital library as the go-to source for 19th century published material. Offering a vast online collection, ECO not only lets you search for specific works, but it also allows full-text searching. Some of the digitized content in ECO is only available to subscribing institutions, so ask your local library.

Here are a few tips for searching the ECO collection:

  1. Use the Advanced Search screen to narrow your search.
  2. To find specific titles, select the title option from the Search in drop-down menu.
  3. From the Find documents matching drop-down menu, select the option all terms in close proximity when searching the full-text of the digital library. This ensures that your search terms occur close together, not on separate pages of the full document.

Our next post on How to Find Digitized Publications will cover the following sources:

Also, stay tuned to find out about some regional digitization initiatives that provide access to provincial and local materials.

Do you have any sources you like to use? If so, share them with us!

Questions or comments? We would love to hear from you!

How to Consult Material that Is Not Yet Available Online

For Archival Material – Use Archives Search

When searching for archival material (i.e., diaries, photographs etc.), use Archives Search. You will be able to search database records, known as “archival descriptions”. Sometimes the contents of the record have not yet been digitized. When this is the case, use one of the following methods to consult the material:

For Published Material – Use Library Search/AMICUS

When searching for published material (i.e., books, newspapers, etc.), use either our Library Search or, for more search features, use our AMICUS catalogue. The search results will often be database records (known as “bibliographic records”) and not full-text online documents. There are three ways you may consult the material:

Questions or comments? We would love to hear from you!