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Slavery and the Slave Trade

Great Things to Know

Welcome to the Slavery and the Slave Trade Research Guide!

We would like to thank Holly Snyder, Ph.D., Curator of American Historical Collections and North American History Librarian at Brown University for allowing us to use her guide as a resource for this guide.

This space is maintained to help students, faculty, and researchers find resources in education. 

Some things to know about the guide:

  • To the left is the Navigation Menu. Use this to jump between the pages and find what you need.
  • Your subject specialist is Tahirah Akbar Williams. For more information on how to contact Tahirah, please see the "Subject Guide" box on the left.
  • Some pages have tabs (see image below). You can easily navigate between tabs by clicking on them.

Picture of the tab interface on this page with arrows indicating that the tab title shows up in the content box, and you can click any tab to see more info about a topic


How does borrowing, access, and requesting work?

The University of Maryland Library System is full of resources--learn all about them!

The Library's page on Access, Borrow, Request will provide details about access to facilities, electronic resources, and physical materials (including what can be borrowed and for how long). 

Find resources on ILL, Requesting, Course Reserves, and more! On this guide, we have highlighted some of these services in the tabs above, but the Library's Access, Borrow, Request page lists many more.

What if I want to suggest materials to the library?

To suggest a video, film or DVD not held by the UM Libraries, complete the Materials Request Form.

If after checking the catalog, you discover that the UM Libraries does not have a particular book you are looking for, please visit Suggestion of a Title for Purchase to recommend the title.

Nonprint Media Services provide access to information in most film and video formats, including more than 800 hours of video-on-demand programming to the campus through the Films@UM digital research collection. You can search the catalog for videos and other nonprint resources.

Interlibrary Loan (Things We Don't Own)

Interlibrary Loan is used to get materials (books and journal articles) not owned by the UM Libraries. This service is offered to all UM College Park faculty, staff, and students.

Article Request (Books and Journals Already in Library)

The Article Request service allows you to access chapters or sections of books that we have in our catalog or request them directly from Interlibrary Loan (ILL).

  • You may request one article per journal issue or one chapter per book. (This is done through the ILL platform- look for the button that says "Article Request".)
  • Interlibrary Loan Services delivers digital copies of journal articles and book chapters to you within 1-4 business days of your request.

  • This service is free of charge and available to UMD students, faculty, and staff.

That's all there is to it! You will be notified via email when the article is available.

Course Reserves

Course Reserves provide you with access to essential readings and media for your classes as requested by your instructor. It exists to serve two kinds of users: those who learn and those who teach. For students, all your course readings are in one convenient place. For instructors, it is a platform for sharing course materials.

What about when I study off-campus?

Did you know that even if you are off-campus, you can still access all of UMD's amazing resources as if you were on campus? All you need is UMD's Reload Buttton.

Add the "Reload @ UMCPbutton to your browser's bookmark toolbar (see instructions below), and whenever you come across a journal you think you should be able to access, click the button to reload the page through the UMD Libraries proxy.


Reload @ UMCP



Drag the button to the bookmarks toolbar or right click and select the "Bookmark This Link" option.

Chrome or Safari
Drag the button to the bookmarks toolbar. If the bookmarks toolbar isn't visible, press Ctrl + Shift + B (in Chrome).

Internet Explorer
Right click the button and choose the "Add to favorites..." option. You may get a warning about adding unsafe links. While it's good practice to be wary, we believe this link is safe.

*Note: Reloading the page through the proxy still won't give you access if it's a resource we don't subscribe to. To verify access, look up the journal or database in the main library site's Database Finder.

Citation Finder

Looking for something specific? Use UMD's Citation Finder to search for articles, journals, eBooks, etc. using specific search criteria. Narrow down the results you'd otherwise get by using this helpful tool.

Research and Learning

The University's Research and Learning department compiles services supporting high level research under one umbrella, expanding the boundaries of the traditional library. Its goal is to connect researchers with virtual services and to bring them together in developing spaces.

You can schedule a one-on-one consultation with a subject specialist through the library directory, or email your subject librarian directly (Tahirah Akbar-Williams, to set up an in-class introduction to research session.

The Research and Learning department also offers several other services that may be of use.

Data Services - offers services such as data archiving and data management. Librarians will help provide you with expert advice and tools needed to properly manage, archive, or cite your data, depending on your needs.

Collection Development and Purchasing - if you wish for the UMD Library to add a specific item to their collection, feel free to suggest it here!

Events and Workshops - the UMD Library offers several talks and workshops covering a variety of topics which may be of interest. Use the link for information on what events and workshops are being offered and the topics being covered.

DRUM (Digital Repository at the University of Maryland) - a digital repository for collecting and preserving work done by university researchers that can be shared all over the world.

Open Scholarship Services - this program offers both consultation and services to help the creation of scholarly works. These services include metadata, marketing, preservation, and more.

Reserve a Room

Looking for a place to study?

You can reserve a room at the library. Go to the Library's Room Reservations page to book a room in any of the libraries.

And, if study carrels are your go-to choice for studying, check out the Library's page on Study Carrels.

Terrapin Learning Commons

Need to borrow some equipment (chargers, headphones, computers, etc.)? Need a 3D printer? Looking for a collaborative study space? The Terrapin Learning Commons has got you covered. 

Get your research questions answered through chat, email, phone, drop in at the Information desk or make an appointment.

You can also schedule a one-on-one consultation with a subject specialist through the library directory, or email your subject librarian directly (Tahirah Akbar-Williams, to set up an in-class introduction to research session.

LibX is a really useful toolbar that can enhance and aid your library experience. The UMD guide to LibX can be found here.