American Women's History: A Research Guide
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General Sources See Also: Specialized Sources


See the general Bibliographies section for additional information sources.

Aldrich, Mark. "State Reports on Women and Child Wage Earners, 1870-1906." Labor History 21 (1980): 86-90.

Barry, Kathleen. Sources in U.S. Women's Labor History [online]. [New York]: The Tamiment Institute Library and Robert F. Wagner Labor Archives, n.d. [cited 17 March 2001]. Available from:
Barry provides highly informative annotations to hundreds of primary and secondary sources in the field.

Bunton, Anne. "Economic Views of Gender Discrimination in Labor Markets [Bibliographic Essay]." Choice 35 (March 1998): 1141-1152.

Huls, Mary Ellen. United States Government Documents on Women, 1800-1990: A Comprehensive Bibliography. Vol. 2, Labor. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1993.

Kennedy, Susan Estabrook. America's White Working-Class Women: A Historical Bibliography. New York: Garland, 1981. 253p.

Soltow, Martha J., and Mary K. Wery. American Women and the Labor Movement, 1825-1974: An Annotated Bibliography. Metuchen, N.J.: Scarecrow, 1976. 247p.

Wilkinson, Carroll Wetzel. Women Working in Nontraditional Fields: References and Resources, 1963-1988. Boston, Mass.: G.K. Hall, 1991.

Encyclopedias/Historical Overviews

Kessler-Harris, Alice. Out to Work: A History of Wage-Earning Women in the United States. New York: Oxford University Press, 1982.

Schneider, Dorothy, and Carl J. Schneider. The ABC-CLIO Companion to Women in the Workplace. Santa Barbara, Calif.: ABC-CLIO, 1993.

Stern, Madeleine B. We the Women: Career Firsts of Nineteenth-Century America. Lincoln: University of Nebraska Press, 1994.

Weiner, Lynn Y. From Working Girl to Working Mother: The Female Labor Force in the United States, 1820-1980. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina, 1985.


Enterprise & Society: The International Journal of Business History []

Networking: Associations/Discussion Lists


The Business History Conference []

Electronic Discussion Lists

See the general Electronic Discussion Lists section for additional information sources.

H-Business []

H-Labor []

Primary Sources: Archival Collections

See the general Archival Collections section for additional information sources.


Leab, Daniel J., and Philip P. Mason, eds. Labor History Archives in the United States: A Guide for Researching and Teaching. Detroit: Wayne State University Press, 1992. 286p.

Baker Library, Harvard Business School

Bouricius, Clara, and Laura Cochrane. Women, Enterprise and Society: A Guide to Resources in the Business Manuscripts Collection at Baker Library [online]. Boston: Baker Library, Harvard Business School, 2002 [cited 27 February 2002]. Available from:

Duke University Library

Daley, Virginia, comp. Business and Labor [online]. In A Sampler of Women's Studies Resources: Primary Source Materials in the Special Collections Library at Duke University. 1988. Revised, 1995 [cited 19 December 1996]. Available from:

Hagley Museum and Library

Catanese, Lynn Ann. Women's History: A Guide to Sources at Hagley Museum and Library. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood Press, 1997. 352p.

Hagley Museum and Library Home Page []

Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives

Bulkley, Constance, comp. A Preliminary Guide to Primary Sources on Women and Work [online]. [Ithaca, N.Y.]: Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, School of Industrial and Labor Relations, Cornell University, 1987. Available from:

National Archives

Records of the Women's Bureau [online]. Washington, DC: U.S. National Archives & Records Administration, 1995- [cited 18 July 2002]. Available from:

Sophia Smith Collection, Smith College

Labor in the U.S.: Selected Sources in the Sophia Smith Collection []

Primary Sources: Microform Collections

Papers of the Women's Trade Union League and Its Principal Leaders. Woodbridge, Conn.: Research Publications, Inc. for the Schlesinger Library, Radcliffe College, 1981.
Reviewed by Elizabeth Patterson in Microform Review 14 (Spring 1985): 127-28.

Presidents Commission on the Status of Women. Bethesda, MD : University Publications of America, 2001. 13 microfilm reels.

Records of the Bureau of Vocational Information, 1908-1932. Frederick, Md.: University Publications of America, c1989.

Records of the Women's Bureau of the U.S. Department of Labor, 1918-1965. Frederick, Md : University Publications of America, 1987- .
Part I contains Monthly Reports of the Director and the Annual Summaries of these reports, Conferences of the Women's Bureau, and Speeches and Articles prepared by the officers. Part II documents the entry of women in the national labor force during and after World War II.

Primary Sources: Digital Collections

American Centuries [online]. Deerfield, Mass.: Memorial Hall Museum, 2001- [cited 9 February 2002]. Available from:

The Triangle Factory Fire, March 25, 1911 [online]. Ithaca, N.Y.: Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, 1998- . Available from:
The "Sources" section includes documents, photographs and illustrations, and audio files of oral histories.

Virtual Oral/Aural History Archive (VOAHA) [online]. Long Beach: VOAHA, California State University, 2002- [cited 17 November 2004]. Available from:
Follow the links to "Women's History" and "Women's Lives, Women's Work."

Women Working, 1870-1930 [online]. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Library Open Collections Program, 2004- [cited 20 April 2004]. Available from:

Primary Sources: Selected Books

See the general Books with Primary Sources section for additional information sources.

Baxandall, Rosalyn, Linda Gordon, and Susan Reverby, eds. America's Working Women: A Documentary History - 1600 to the Present. 2d ed., revised. New York: W.W. Norton, 1995.

Brownlee, W. Elliot, and Mary M. Brownlee, eds. Women in the American Economy: A Documentary History, 1675-1929. New Haven, Conn.: Yale University Press, 1976.

Primary Sources: Statistics

Statistics & Data [online]. [Washington]: Women's Bureau, U.S. Department of Labor, last updated 23 March 1999 [cited 30 April 1999]. Available from:

Talking About Women's History

Harley, Sharon. Sister Circle [Interview online]. Interviewed by George Liston Seay. Talking History, 11 September 2003. Available from:
Harley and Seay discuss black women and work in American history.

Harvey, Sheridan. Rosie the Riveter: Real Women Workers in World War II [online]. Journeys and Crossings, Library of Congress, 12 September 2003. Available from:

The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire of 1911 [online]. Produced by Jane Ladouceur. Talking History, 30 March 2000. Available from:

Von Drehle, David. Triangle: The Fire That Changed America [Interview online]. Interviewed by Brian Lamb. Booknotes, 5 October 2003. Available from:

Women Historically Limited by Restrictions on Economic Opportunities, Says History's Kessler-Harris [online]. [2002]. Available from:

American Women's History: A Research Guide

Ken Middleton
Middle Tennessee State University Library
Murfreesboro, TN