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How do I Find Primary Sources?: Search Library Catalogs

Search for Books!

Use the Kraemer Library Catalog to find books, ebooks, DVDs, streaming movies, CDs, and streaming music owned by the library. You cannot find articles in the catalog! Need articles for your assignment? Search in a database or use the OneSearch search box on the library homepage

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Kraemer Library Catalog Search


Advanced Search

Is our copy of a book checked out? Not enough books about your research topic at UCCS?

Use Prospector to search the catalogs of other libraries in Colorado! If an item you want is available, place a request and it will be delivered to Kraemer Family Library. You'll get an email when the item arrives.

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Prospector: Classic Catalog

Search Prospector:

Advanced Search

 Not enough material for your research topic in Prospector? Use WorldCat to search the catalogs of other libraries around the nation and the world. Identify relevant materials and order them through Interlibrary Loan. Rare and archival materials are usually not loanable. If you need assistance, check with a librarian.

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Phone: 719-255-3295

Text(sms): 719-344-2381

Email: Send an email

What Can I Find in the Catalog?

Print Books (Ain't broke? Don't fix it!)

E-books (Like print, but online.)

Movies (DVDs and streaming)

Music (CDs and streaming)

Search the Library Catalog

A Keyword search allows you to search for any word(s) in the subject, title, author, and content notes for all item records in the catalog. 

A Keyword search allows you to:

  • locate items on your topic if you don't know the subject heading.
  • create searches that combine search terms.
  • identify chapters in books about your topic.

Here are a couple of tips to keep in mind when doing a keyword search:

  • use quotation marks to surround a phrase.Only use quotation marks around words that have to stay together.

Correct example of when to use quotation marks: "north america"

Incorrect example of when to use quotation marks: "soldiers in north america"

This search should instead be: soldiers AND "north america"

  • to search terms with multiple endings, use an asterisk  * at the end of the root word.

Example: indian* will search for any word that begins with "indian," including indians, indian, Indiana, and Indianapolis

When you do a Subject Search you search a controlled vocabulary, in our library we use the Library of Congress Subject Headings. Subject searches are much more specific than Keyword searches and only look at the subjects that are assigned to materials.

*A subject search WILL NOT search the abstract, title, or chapter information in a catalog record.*

A Subject search allows you to:

  • identify all items in the collection about that subject.
  • narrow your search through subject subdivisions.

For example in the image below you can see that Indians of North America History is a broad subject that narrows to Indians of North American History 16th Century, Indians of North America History 17th Century, etc. Each of this subject headings, broad and narrow, is a link that you can click to see that materials that have that specific heading.

** The easiest way to find these subject headings is to link to them from a catalog record. So once you find one book that looks promising for your topic, look at the subject headings and click the best fit subject heading to your topic to get to the Subjects list like you see below.**

An Author Search allows you to search for materials written by a specific person.

Once you identify persons who played a role in the event or time period you are studying, do an author search to see if the library owns anything written by them.

* Notice that when doing an Author Search you should enter the author's name LASTNAME, FIRSTNAME.*

If you know what type of primary source material you are looking for, you can search by material type.

You will need to search for these material types as SUBJECTS, not Keywords.

To do this, use the Advanced Search option in the catalog and use the top search box that is set to Any Field to type in your topic keywords (ie slavery and "United States") and use a separate search box that is set to Subject to type in your desired material words (ie narratives OR diaries).

Some other words that you can use to search by material types are:

  • sources
  • personal narratives
  • correspondence
  • diaries
  • interviews
  • early works
  • maps
  • public opinion
  • pictorial works
  • photograph


If you are looking for primary source documents about a specific period or point in time, there are some specific tools you can use to sort or filter your results by date. You will do this differently depending on whether you are doing a Subject search or a Keyword search.

Filter your results by date with a Subject Search:

For a Subject search you can use the Advanced Search screen to filter your results by date. On the left hand side of the Advanced Search screen select SUBJECT from the row of buttons. Enter the subject heading that you have already found for relevant results about your topic (see the Search by Subject tab on this page for more information about finding a relevant subject heading). Then SORT by Oldest first.


Filter your results by date with a Keyword Search:

For a keyword search you will use the Advanced Search screen but will leave the selection on "Advanced Keyword". Enter your search terms in the search boxes and then set the years you want to see results from in the Year portion of the Add Limits box.



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