Topics in the History of Science and Technology: The Darwinian Revolution

Semester and Year: 
Spring 2020
Course number: 
HST 496/586
Crowe, Nathan

Special Collections

Randall Library's Special Collections contains some early editions of Darwin's books, as well rare books on evolution, eugenics, and other Darwinian Revolution issues. To use Special Collections materials, search their catalog and then contact Special Collections staff to make an appointment.

Primary Sources Online - Darwin

Darwin Online

Database of searchable publications, personal manuscripts, images, and private papers related to or written by Charles Darwin.

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Darwin Correspondence Project

Resource for letters written to and from Charles Darwin with additional transcription and contextual writings.

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Charles Darwin's Library

A digital and virtual reconstruction of the surviving books owned by Charles Darwin from the Biodiversity Heritage Library. Resource also provides original annotations and notes from Darwin's books.

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Primary Sources Online - Historical Scientific Publications


Archive of selected scholarly journals in anthropology, art, art history, communication studies, criminology, ecology, economics, education, English, film studies, foreign languages and literatures, geography, geology, history, mathematics, music, philosophy, political science, public and international affairs, religion, social work, sociology, statistics, theatre, and other humanities and social sciences.

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The geology of North America is covered from 1669 to the present, and global coverage dates back to 1933. Over 3,500 journals are reviewed for indexing in the GeoRef database as well as books, maps, government reports, conference papers, theses and dissertations.

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Zoological Record

Zoological Record is the world's oldest continuing database of animal biology. It is considered the world's leading taxonomic reference, and with coverage back to 1868, has long acted as the world's unofficial register of animal names. It is part of Web of Science.

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Nineteenth Century Collections Online (NCCO)

Primary source collections of the “long” nineteenth century. Content includes monographs, newspapers, pamphlets, manuscripts, ephemera, maps, statistics, and more.

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Try navigating to the Science, Technology, and Medicine collection, and then scrolling down to the bottom to get to the Evolution and the Origin of Species sub-collection.

Primary Sources Online - The Victorian Context

British Library Newspapers

A comprehensive range of regional and local newspapers in Britain between the mid-eighteenth and mid-twentieth centuries, providing a range of publications to reflect the social, political and cultural events of the times. The British Library Newspapers' collections feature London national newspapers, English regional papers, home country newspapers from Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales, and titles in specialist areas such as Victorian radicalism and Chartism

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Making Of The Modern World

Provides digital facsimile images of primary sources that track the development of the modern, western world through the lens of trade and wealth. Full-text searching across millions of pages of works from the periods 1450-1850, 1851-1914, and 1890-1945 provides researchers access to material for research in the areas of history, political science, social conditions, technology and industry, economics, area studies and more. Includes books, serials, pamphlets, essays and more.

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Nineteenth Century Collections Online (NCCO)

Primary source collections of the “long” nineteenth century. Content includes monographs, newspapers, pamphlets, manuscripts, ephemera, maps, statistics, and more.

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Victorian Popular Culture

An essential resource for the study of popular art, art history, and entertainment in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Consists of four components: Spiritualism, Sensation and Magic; Circuses, Sideshows and Freaks; Music Hall, Theatre and Popular Entertainment; and Moving pictures, optical entertainments & the advent of cinema. Includes full-text, full-color reproductions of books, ephemera, handbills, pamphlets, photos, posters, programs, scripts, and other types of materials.

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Victorian Web

"[O]ne of the oldest academic and scholarly websites," Victorian Web is an index of primary resources related to the Victorian-era Great Britain."

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Times (London) Digital Archive

The Times Digital Archive, 1785–2006 makes 221 years of this highly regarded resource available for students and researchers of 19th-, 20th-, and early 21st-century history, literature, culture, business, art, art history, architecture, and more. Every complete page of every issue is full-text searchable — every headline, article, editorial, announcement, image and advertisement.

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New York Times (ProQuest Historical Newspapers)

Resource provides searchable archive for the New York Times dating back to 1851. Contains digital reproductions of every page from every issue in downloadable PDF files.

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Primary Sources Online - The Aftermath/Public Opinion

Along with the below, if you are interested in the public response to Darwin or the theory of evolution, you might want to search newspapers and magazines for terms such as "Darwin" or "evolution" from the era that you are interested in. To check to see if Randall Library has a particular magazine or newspaper, go to the UNCW Library Catalog (, change the drop-down to "Journal Title," and type in the publication title (e.g. New York Times, Newsweek, Time). 

Chronicling America - Darwin's Theory of Evolution

This guide provides access to primary source materials related to "Darwin's Theory of Evolution” in the Chronicling America digital collection of historic newspapers.

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The Evolution Controversy in North Carolina in the 1920s

This website "presents a selection of primary source materials documenting the statewide debate over the teaching of evolution in public schools in the 1920s." It comes from Wilson Library at UNC Chapel Hill.

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Internet History of Science Sourcebook

Resource uses various sources/external links to create a timeline of the history of science and scientific progress.

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The largest collection of poll data anywhere—1935 to present, all US polling firms, broad topical coverage of opinions and behavior on social issues, politics, pop culture, international affairs, and more. International and US datasets available for immediate download.

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History Librarian

Kiana Webster

Social Sciences & History Librarian
Phone Number: 

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