Skip to main content

History Department Research Module: Citation Guide: Home

General Citation Advice

  • When citing page numbers, use the ones from the original work. If the article is in html, leave out page numbers.
  • Ignore the "cite" features in databases. They may not have the style you need and it's likely that the citation will not be accurate according to current standards.
  • Zotero can be a helpful tool when citing. Training dates and times will be posted as available on the main Zotero page in addition to online training.

How to Cite Sources for History

The purpose of using citations in your writing is to identify the origin of different information so that your reader can know what is original, what comes from another source, and where to find that same source. 

Each scholarly field has a citation system that it employs, and historians almost universally employ the Chicago-Turabian citation style of footnotes and endnotes. Once you learn how to read footnotes or endnotes, they are like a code that tells you what kind of material it is and how to find it.

Professional historians typically employ footnotes and endnotes when they need to cite a quotation or idea from a source, rather than putting these page references in parentheses.  Your professor should indicate what style of citation the assignment requires.  Most word processors enter these footnotes/endnotes automatically and can be moved or updated automatically when making any changes. 

For Microsoft Word, depending on the edition, this is usually under “Insert” or “References."  If you are having trouble, search online for instructions or go to the help section of your word processor.  This video walks you through an example of how to insert citations from an article in JSTOR.  Click here for PDF of these steps (you'll have to scroll down to the correct PDF).  This video discusses strategies for avoiding plagiarism and using footnotes or endnotes to enhance the content of your writing.

Your professor should indicate whether you need a bibliography or works cited page at all, and which kind he or she requires.  Both of these use the exact same formatting, the main difference is that works cited pages only include what is cited in the essay itself, and bibliographies can include materials that were consulted but not necessarily directly referenced in the essay.

The following are examples of citations for the most typical types of information you might cite.  For others, see The Chicago Manual of Style itself (available at the Ready Reference Collection near the Reference Desk), or its website Click here for a PDF that points out the different parts of these citations (you'll have to scroll down to the correct PDF).

You only use the full citation information for the first endnote or footnote for a source; after that, you use an abbreviation.

 

Books (one author)

First footnote/endnote:

1. Jess Hollenback, Mysticism: Experience, Response, Empowerment (State College: Pennsylvania State University Press, 1996), 25.

 

Subsequent footnotes/endnotes:

 

2. Hollenback, Mysticism, 3.

 

Bibliography or Works Cited Entry (alphabetized, indent second and subsequent lines):

Hollenback, Jess. Mysticism: Experience, Response, Empowerment.  State College: Pennsylvania State University

         Press, 1996.



Edited Book

First footnote/endnote:

 

1. Mark W. Chavalas and K. Lawson Taylor, Jr., eds. Mesopotamia and the Bible (New York: T & T Clark International, 2003), 9.

 

Subsequent footnotes/endnotes:

 

2. Chavalas and Taylor, 9.

 

Bibliography or Works Cited Entry (alphabetized, indent second and subsequent lines):

 

Chavalas, Mark W. and K. Lawson Taylor, Jr, eds.  Mesopotamia and the Bible.  New York: T & T Clark          International, 2003.

 

Journal Articles

First footnote/endnote:

1. Victor Macias-Gonzalez, “Masculine Friendships, Sentiment, and Homoerotics in Nineteenth-Century Mexico: The
Correspondence of José María Calderón y Tapia, 1820s-1850s,” Journal of the History of Sexuality 16.3 (2007), 420.

 

Subsequent footnotes/endnotes:

2. Macias-Gonzalez, “Masculine Friendships,” 425.

 

Bibliography or Works Cited Entry (alphabetized, indent second and subsequent lines):

 

Macias-Gonzalez, Victor.  “Masculine Friendships, Sentiment, and Homoerotics in Nineteenth-Century Mexico: The

         Correspondence of José María Calderón y Tapia, 1820s-1850s.” Journal of the History of Sexuality 16.3 (2007),

         416-35.

 

Essay in a Collection

First footnote/endnote:

1. Ariel Beaujot,“‘The Beauty of Her Hands’: The Glove and the Making of the Middle-Class Body,” in Material Women:
Consuming Desires and Consuming Objects, 1750-1950, ed. Maureen Daly Giggin and Beth Fowkes Tobin (Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Company, 2009), 169.

 

Subsequent footnotes/endnotes:

2. Beaujot, “Beauty of Her Hands,” 169.    

 

Bibliography or Works Cited Entry (alphabetized, indent second and subsequent lines):

 

Beaujot, Ariel. “‘The Beauty of Her Hands’: The Glove and the Making of the Middle-Class Body.”  In Material Women:

          Consuming Desires and Consuming Objects, 1750-1950, edited by Maureen Daly Giggin and Beth Fowkes Tobin,

          167-184. Aldershot: Ashgate Publishing Company, 2009.