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Guidelines for getting started with historical writing

Citation Guide for Historical Writing: Download here for pdf version or see below

In the field of history, scholars follow the Chicago Manual of Style (also known as “Turabian” Style) Rules for citation formatting.

NOTE: Chicago Style differentiates between footnote citations and bibliographical citations in key ways. Below, you will find examples of the most common source citations in Chicago Style for both of these formats.


If you do not see what you’re looking for, visit http://www.chicagomanualofstyle.org/home.html for a searchable database of all your citation-writing needs.


Style Guide for Footnotes and Bibliography:

Book with One Author

Bibliography

Woodthrush, John R. Songs My Father Taught Me. New Haven: Birdwatchers Press, 1985.


Footnote

¹John R. Woodthrush, Songs My Father Taught Me (New Haven: Birdwatchers Press, 1985), 212-24.


Book with Two Authors

Bibliography

Unwin, L.P., and Joseph Galloway. Peace in Ireland. Boston: No Such Press, 1984.


Footnote

2L.P. Unwin and Joseph Galloway, Peace in Ireland (Boston: No Such Press, 1984), 19.


Book with an Editor, Compiler, or Translator

Bibliography

Wiley, Bell I., ed. [or trans.] Slaves No More: Letters from Liberia, 1833-1869. Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1980.


Note

3Bell I. Wiley, Bell I., ed. [or trans.], Slaves No More: Letters from Liberia, 1833-1869 (Lexington: University Press of Kentucky, 1980), 367-412.


Books with More than One Volume

Bibliography

Byrne, Muriel St. Clare, ed. The Lisle Letters. 6 vols. Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1981.


Note

4Muriel St. Clare Byrne, ed., The Lisle Letters (Chicago: The University of Chicago Press, 1981), 5:124.


Chapters or Parts of a Book with Multiple Authors and an Editor

Bibliography

Kaiser, Ernest. “The Literature of Harlem.” In Harlem: A Community in Transition, edited by J. H. Clarke. New York: Citadel Press, 1964.


Note

5Ernest Kaiser, “The Literature of Harlem,” in Harlem: A Community in Transition, ed. J. H. Clarke (New York: Citadel Press, 1964), 53.


Journal Articles

Bibliography

Robertson, Noel. “The Dorian Migration and Corinthian Ritual.” Classical Philology 75 (1980): 1-22.


Note

6Noel Robertson, “The Dorian Migration and Corinthian Ritual,” Classical Philology 75 (1980): 9-14.


Encyclopedia Entries (note – these should not be placed in your bibliography)

 Note

7Encyclopedia Brittanica, 11th ed., s.v. “original package.”


Online References


Bibliography

Taibi, Catherine. “Rachel Maddow Goes on Letterman, Wears Awesome Shoes, Laughs at Potential 2016 Nominees.” Huffington Post. January 29, 2015. Accessed January 29, 2015. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/29/rachel-maddow-total-mess-david-letterman-2016-presidential-elections_n_6571358.html.


Note

8Catherine Taibi, “Rachel Maddow Goes on Letterman, Wears Awesome Shoes, Laughs at Potential 2016 Nominees,” Huffington Post, January 29, 2015, accessed January 29, 2015, http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/01/29/rachel-maddow-total-mess-david-letterman-2016-presidential-elections_n_6571358.html.


Electronic Books

According to the Chicago Manual of Style: “If a book is available in more than one format, cite the version you consulted. For books consulted online, list a URL; include an access date only if one is required by your publisher or discipline. If no fixed page numbers are available, you can include a section title or a chapter or other number.”


Bibliography

Austen, Jane. Pride and Prejudice. New York: Penguin Classics, 2007. Kindle edition.


Note

9Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice (New York: Penguin Classics, 2007), Kindle edition.


Subsequent References

In footnotes, never use ibid., idem, or op. cit. for subsequent references to the first citation. Simply shorten the author and title after the first, and therefore full, reference. We give as an example only the first below. The rest on this list will simply follow this model.

Example: 10Woodthrush, Songs, 351.



What’s not here:

If what you seek is not here, we recommend that you search one of the many printed and online guides to Chicago/Turabian style. There you will find examples of greater complexity: public documents, unpublished materials (manuscripts and letters in archives, conference papers, interview transcripts, et al), sound and video recordings, legal cases, microform and microfilm materials, magazines and newspapers, plays and poems, classical literature, et al.

Useful Links:

We recommend that you visit the following websites: