Caribbean History and Culture, 1535 – 1920

This past week the efforts of Christopher Columbus were recognized with the annual observation of his namesake holiday. Last May, the Texas State University Libraries added the Caribbean History and Culture, 1535-1920 database, providing insight to the new world Columbus’ explorations created.

cover page of Caribbean History database

Caribbean History and Culture, 1535-1920 presents a number of historical documents in the form of books, almanacs, and other ephemera. The primary sources are fully searchable and can be browsed by genre, subject, author, place of publication, or language. George Washington’s journal from his time in Barbados and a lecture from John Jay about the emancipation of the West Indies are available.

Check out the Libraries’ Database’s What’s New page to see what resources have been added. And stop by the Round Rock Campus Library ….Come In and Find Out More.

World Cup ’18

The 2018 World Cup, crowning a champion this Sunday, has been a thrilling display of athleticism and endurance, sportsmanship and teamwork, and national pride and geopolitics. The 32 participating countries each have their unique style of play, but also their own unique national identity consisting of a history, culture, and political systems. Fortunately, Texas State University Libraries offers numerous resources to help familiarize the world.

According to Gale’s Countries of the World and Their Leaders, 32% of the population of Belgium speaks French. A good lip reader may detect a number of French vulgarities exchanged during the semi-final match against France. Texas State University Libraries also offers the opportunity for students to learn French through Rosetta Stone.

World map featuring Belgium

Semi-Finalist Croatia and Group E participants, Serbia, were both formerly part of a historical nation called Yugoslavia. Yugoslavia reached the semifinals in the 1930 and 1962 World Cups. Visit CountryWatch for more information about Croatia and Serbia.

England is often cited for creating soccer. However, ProQuest’s CultureGrams will only go as far as to say that England develop the modern rules for the sport. The national team’s current run into the semi-finals (as of the time of this writing) has inspired their supports to sing “It’s Coming Home”.   

Between matches … Come In and Find Out More.

Keep In Touch

The 2017 Major League Baseball season has been whittled to four teams: New York Yankees, Los Angeles Dodgers, Chicago Cubs, and the Houston Astros. These teams represent the four largest cities and media markets. Naturally, the newspapers published in these cities are some of the country’s most influential. Fortunately, Texas State University students have access to these cities’ major publications.

US Major Dailies, a ProQuest database, offers access to New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Los Angeles Times, and Chicago Tribune (The Washington Post is also available, but, to follow the theme of this blog, the Nationals were eliminated).

Daily editions of the Houston Chronicle can be located in NewsBank. NewsBanks is a remarkable resource offering access to newspapers from throughout the world. Publications included range from Daily Nation from Nairobi, Kenya, the Fiji Times, the Daily Mirror from Colombo, Sri Lanka, and The Floyd Press, Laramie Boomerang, and the Austin American-Statesman from the United States.


The library’s Periodical List will direct users to the appropriate database upon searching a title. For help on locating your hometown’s weekly or your dream destination’s daily, Come In and Find Out More.

We’ve Got History

Saturday, September 16th, 2017 is the 77th anniversary of President Franklin D. Roosevelt signing the Selective Service and Training Act of 1940, instituting the military draft leading into World War II.

The University Libraries at Texas State University offer many resources to put the historical moment in perspective. For example, an article headlined, “16 Million Youth Ready to Register: Executive Order Awaited to Send Boards into High” marked the event in the September 17, 1940 edition of the Austin American-Statesman. Older editions of the Austin American-Statesman can be found in the Austin American Statesman – Historical database provided by ProQuest.

cq researcher

The Selective Service and Training ACT of 1940 and the subsequent implementing of the draft is not without controversy, however. Fortunately, both sides of the issue are discussed through a series of articles featured in CQ Researcher, another database offered by the University Libraries. A search of “military draft” will return opinions and conversations on the topic going back to 1939.

Should you ever feel lost in history look the RRC Library can help navigate …. Come in and Find Out More.

Meet Your Maladies with Malacards


Malacards is a database indexing human diseases. Each entry known as a “disease card”, includes annotations on the malady including aliases and colloquial terms for the disease, symptoms, drugs used for treatment, affiliated genes, academic articles on the subject (full-text of the articles can be searched in “Start Your Research”), and related diseases.

The annotation, in many instances, concerning related diseases will include a graphic illustrating the connection between maladies and links to their entries within Malacards.

Diagram of network of disaeses

Malacards, with over 18,000 diseases and disorders listed, is a valuable resource and study guide for health and medicine students. Log in to Malacards to find out more.

Take a Dip in the Cool, Refreshing Waters of Streaming Media

It is too hot to go outside. Not only is it uncomfortable, but it could also be a danger to your health.

Now, one may argue that staying indoors with the blinds drawn for months on end will stifle one’s ability to explore and become familiar with the world. My rebuttal would be that all Texas State University students, staff, and faculty have access to the University Library and its content, which includes a number of databases that offer access to streaming movies.

From the Library’s Databases page, you’ll notice a column on the right side of the screen. At the top of the column you’ll find several links, one marked “streaming”. Follow this link to the list of databases offering streaming media, including movies.


streaming link


At this point you may argue, “Come one, these are all gonna be bland and boring educational documentaries design for academic instruction. That isn’t something I’m going to want to watch while I’m trying to enjoy my summer out of the heat.” This time my rebuttal would have to be, “You’re wrong.”

Kanopy, a streaming film service, provides access to many, many films that make up the Criterion Collection along with many other feature films. And while documentaries are very much available, the films are popular documentaries, made for the wider population with the intent to entertain as well as inform. Recent films, such as I am Not Your Negro and American Anarchist are available.

Films on Demand is another service offered through the University Library. This database offers streaming documentaries from the likes of PBS, featuring their always engaging Frontline series and Ken Burns productions, the History Channel, and HBO, where you can watch the creepy new film about the Slender Man.

Like most databases available through Texas State, Kanopy and Films on Demand are accessible from home, however, feel free to Come In and Find Out More.

Happy Earth Day

This Saturday, April 22nd, will be the 47th annual celebration of Earth Day. Founded in 1970 by Senator Gaylord Nelson of Wisconsin, Earth Day was meant to bring awareness to issues such as pollution, sustainability, and endangered species. The passage of bills such as the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Endangered Species Act as well as the establishment of the Environmental Protection Agency have been attributed to the success of the observation (2017).

Texas State University Libraries offer a number of resources to help with environmental literacy. A number of databases available through the libraries’ website are dedicated to the environmental studies. For example, Ebsco’s Environment Complete provides full-text access to scholarly articles on a number of topics related to the study of environments. BioOne Complete offers access to a number of journals published by smaller environmentally minded societies that may not be currently indexed elsewhere.

environmental studies database

The Round Rock Campus Library encourages you to have a fun and mindful Earth Day weekend. A day at the Meadows Center for Water and the Environment at the San Marcos Campus could be enjoyable. But when it’s time to get back to studying, stop by the Round Rock Campus Library … Come in and Find Out More.


(2017). The History of Earth Day. Retrieved from http://

All the News

The New York Times is available to students, faculty, and staff of Texas State University through the University Libraries.

Perhaps the quickest way to gain access to The New York Times is to locate the US Major Dailies through the libraries’ database page. Here users can access the full-text of the daily print edition from June 1, 1980 through the current day, the online edition from March 24, 2015 through the present, the weekly New York Times Book Review from January 19, 1997 though present, and New York Times Magazine from January 5, 1997 through the present issue. US Major Dailies also provides full-text access to the several edition of the Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Wall Street Journal, and The Washington Post

.US major Dailes

Full-text articles from The New York Times are also available LexisNexis Academic, Opposing View Points in Context, and Science in Context.

 The New York Times Upfront, the publication’s news magazine for young people, can be found in full-text at Education Source and MasterFILE Complete.

While articles are available in full-text through these resources, unfortunately, no images are available and the original formatting is not present.

If you are curious as to how to read The New York Times stop by the Round Rock Campus. Come In and Find out More.     

The Birds (Not the Movie)

If you have not yet seen the amateur video of a flock of turkeys walking in a circle around a dead cat, check it out here.

Man, that is creepy.

From walking in a circle around a dead cat (Wild Turkeys), to pole-to-pole migration (Arctic Tern), to learning to talk (Common Raven), birds can be an interesting bunch. Fortunately, Texas State University Libraries offers Birds of North America Online through its database collection to help explain (and/or celebrate) all of the idiosyncrasies of our avian neighbors.

illustration of Birds of North America logo

Birds of North America is a searchable database, organized by species, offering information on every fowl found in from Panama to Canada. For each species, a number of full-color images are available depicting both male and female throughout the lifespan. Charts on molting are also included.

Reports on behavior, diet, and vocalization (the Willow Ptarmigan) are included in each species’ entry. Migration information is also included, with some species getting a really impressive video plotting their course from south to north and back week by week (American Redstart).

The Round Rock Campus Library would like to invite anyone in to Come In and Find Out More before you head out to Spring Break … After all, South Padre Island is a premier birding destination.

Stay Informed with Congressional Publications

Did you know that Representative John R. Carter is currently sponsoring 30 pieces of legislation, two of which have already passed within the House of Representatives? Where you aware that during the 114th Congress (2015-2016) Senator John Cornyn voted with the majority 83% of the time? How about Ted Cruz’s chairmanship of the Subcommittee on Science, Space, and Competitiveness?

Did you know that through ProQuest’s Congressional Publications, available through Texas State University Libraries’ databases, you can help you stay informed with what’s happening within the United States Congress?

us capitol

Congressional Publications allows users to search legislation (introduced to signed into law) by topic or title. Returns will provide summaries of the legislation, links to full text reports of debates concerning the legislation, the multiple versions of the bill, reports and hearings related to the bill, and a link to Bill Profile Report, which includes list of sponsors and co-sponsors, the bill’s status, and even links to the legislation’s full-text.

Congressional Publications also allows users to search by member. A member search will link users to a Member Profile page that will offer a brief biography, contact information (including links to social media), tabs listing sponsored legislation, committee membership, statements from the floor, voting history, a record of campaign finance, and a sample of social media posts.

Let Congressional Publications and the Round Rock Campus Library keep you informed.