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POLS 4040: American Political Thought: Signers Research

Federalist Authors

Political Theory Encyclopedias

We have a few good online academic encyclopedias for background information:

Bevir, M. (2010). Encyclopedia of political theory. Thousand Oaks, CA: Sage Publications.

Claeys, G., Cummings, M. S., Sargent, L. T. (2013). Encyclopedia of modern political thought.

Encyclopedia of the American Constitution. (2000)

Finding Full Text

If the results has a link that says '.pdf full text' or '.html full text' under it:

Simply click on the link and you will have access to the article.

If it does NOT have those links:

Click on the  button under the result;

If we have access to article in another database, a link either directly to the article or to the online version of the journal will be provided;

If we don't have access online:

Click on the print link to see if we have the journal in print.

If we don't have a subscription:

Click on the InterLibrary Loan link and we will get the article for you (normally within 24 hours).

Founder Background Material

America:  History and Life: Database of scholarly articles written by historians.

ERIC:  Educational database.  Often the signers of the constitution are incorporated into lesson plans for teachers, and you can find a wealth of background information here.

JSTOR:  Catch all database for history, arts, and humanities.

ProQuest Dissertations:  Indexes theses and dissertations of graduate students in the western hemisphere.  Good for niche topics.

WorldCat:  Worldwide catalog of books.  Use early because it can take a while for materials to reach us here at UGA through the mail.

*When searching our library catalog and WorldCat, there is a special subject heading for "UNITED STATES DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE SIGNERS"

Primary Source Documents

The publications of political philosophers and Founding Fathers from the birth of the nation are in the public domain.  Here are a couple of repositories which have aggregated these materials:

The Founders Constitution

Records of the Federal Convention of 1787

Archive of Americana

You can browse our full database list on our History guide page:

State Digital Archives

A lot of states have digitized materials about their signers of the Constitution.  You can find a list of state digital archives here at the Library of Congress.

GIL Express and InterLibrary Loan


You can request pdf scans of book chapters and print articles which already reside in our collection.  Simply fill out this form.


You can borrow book from all 32 University System of Georgia institutions through a service called GIL Express.  

First, search the GIL Catalog and find the book you want.  Make sure you choose University System of Georgia from the dropdown menu.  Click on the link to the catalog record of the book.

Second, if another university has the book, and it is not checked out, click on My Account at the top of the page to log in with your MyID and password.

After you log in, you will be able to click on the Request link.  The book should arrive at the Library within four business days.


If the book you need is not owned by UGA or another USG institution, you can then place an ILLiad request, and we will borrow it from outside of the public university system.  This takes longer, so be prepared to wait from two weeks to a month to get a book.

ILL will also get articles for you if we do not possess a print or electronic copy.  They normally can email you a pdf within one business day.

Button Gwinnett

Your UGA Librarian


I am YOUR librarian, so you can come to me with questions about research for any Political Science class.

You can email, call, or stop by and see me.  For immediate help after 6:00pm, you can use our "Ask a Librarian" box embedded on the Right hand side of this page to ask questions of our librarians until 11:30 at night.

There are also Reference Librarians working on the 1st floor of the Main library until 11:30pm.  If you need help getting books out of the stacks they will be happy to help you.