Chicago Metro History Fair
The Chicago Metro History Education Center has a detailed website dedicated to all aspects of its annual History Fair. Stop here for everything from logistical details to research help, and to view resources on many Chicago history topics.
Encyclopedia of Chicago
A free, online version of a print reference book from the Chicago History Museum, the Newberry Library and Northwestern University. With articles on thousands of topics related to Chicago history, it is a great early stop for general information.
Library of Congress: American Memory Project
The Library of Congress provides free, digital access to more than 9 million resources documenting American history and culture, broken down into thematic collections. You can search the site for specific topics, or look within a section dedicated to 55,000 photographs from the Chicago Daily News from 1902-1933, provided by the Chicago History Museum.
National Archives Digital Vaults
A collection of more than 1,200 primary source photographs and documents from the National Archives collection. There probably isn't something here for every topic, but it's a site to try for inspiration or to get a feel for history.
Chicago Public Library: Chicago History
The Chicago Public Library has a pathfinder (a web page that points to other resources) with extensive information on Chicago history, including databases, websites, library materials, and several topical sub-sites. It also has a narrower pathfinder dedicated solely to the History Fair.
Chicago History Museum: Chicago History Fair
The Chicago History Museum offers online resources to help with History Fair projects, including general reference materials and specialized sites on popular topics like the Haymarket bombing or the Great Chicago Fire.
Gale Student Resource Center Junior
Offers a broad range of authoritative reference content in an easily searchable format. Provides access to full-text magazines, academic journals, news articles, primary source documents, images, videos, audio files, and links to quality websites on numerous topics.
CPS Explore! Resources
This is a list of links cultivated for different subject areas. While there isn't a section specifically for History Fair, if you scroll down to the Social Science section, there are quite a few high-quality history-based sites.
Books and eBooks
We have a few books here in the library that might be helpful in doing Chicago history research, as well as a number of eBooks from CPS. Both can be found on this list (anything with [electronic resource] in the title is an eBook; the rest are here in the library). Click on the title to find out if a book is available and how to access it.
In addition to the above, anyone with a Chicago Public Library card can access even more databases. The following options could be helpful depending on your topic:
American National Biography Online
Biographies of thousands of deceased Americans, published by Oxford University press. Could be a good starting point for research on famous Chicago figures.
Biography in Context
A collection of more than 600,000 biographies of people across history and disciplines, this Gale resource will provide articles on many notable Chicagoans.
Chicago Defender Historical Archive
Searchable first-hand accounts from 1910-1975 of political and social events on a local, regional and national level. Provided by ProQuest’s Historical Newspapers – Black primary source database.
Genealogical and historical search site from ProQuest that offers access to local primary sources dating back to the 1700s.
Illinois Sanborn Maps
Another ProQuest resource, this site allows students to search historical Chicago maps from the 19th and 20th centuries.
ProQuest One Search
General reference database with access to thousands of titles across popular subjects, including history.
Creating Your Bibliography
A bibliography (also called a works cited page) is an important part of any research project. It lets others find the exact sources you used. They might want to do this to explore your topic more, to make sure what you said was correct, or to double check for plagiarism. MLA format is a good place to start, and it is one of two accepted formats for the History Fair.
There are several websites that can help you format your sources correctly and build a source list, including:
BibMe also has a nice citation guide that helps you format books, newspapers, websites, photographs, and more.