Research: Bibliographic Tools

List of Books Available for Download from Digital Libraries

By Justin Howard


In the last few years, there has been a concerted effort to digitize older books in order to make them available to a larger readership, as well as to preserve the information in case of decay of the original paper copy. The best known website is of course Google Books, however there are other sites which have also digitized a large number of books, e.g. Internet Archive and Gallica. 

These projects are very beneficial to the historian / researcher in that many hitherto little-known books have come to light, and also because the digital search function normally takes only a few seconds to search thousands of books for a specified term.

Because these books are usually quite old and the copyright has expired, they have entered into the public domain and can thus be made freely available to interested readers.

It is however worth noting that not all countries have the same copyright laws. A book which is available for download in one country may only be partly available in another country (e.g. a so-called snippet view) or even not at all. The websites can normally identify the reader's country of origin by the IP-address of the computer used to access the site.

The following pages list books available from these digital libraries. These lists will grow with time, as relevant books are identified. The lists mainly consists of books which are mentioned in posts on the Discussion Forum, though there will be a time lag between a book being mentioned and appearing in the lists. Forum members are also welcome to contact Justin Howard directly to send him the links to books which are not yet listed. Where the link is to the Google Books website, it would also be useful to know the type of view available for the country in which the Forum member lives. 

The format used in these lists is the following:

Author Title and Link Remark
Bas, François de  Prins Frederik der Nederlanden en zijn tijd, Volume 3, Issue 2 p. 340 re Lieutenant Colonel S. R. van Hulstein (or Hulstyn) - 16th North Netherlands Jaegers Battalion in 1815 and p. 420 Lieutenant Colonel J. de Frees - Commanding the Artillery Park in 1815

In cases where the book is obviously relevant to the Napoleonic Era, usually no further remark is added.

In cases where the relevance to the Napoleonic Era is not obvious, a remark has been added to indicate the relevant page(s).

If you have books that you would like to add to the listing, please contact me at Contact the Editor .

Justin Howard


Placed on the Napoleon Series: December 2010; updated in January and July 2011


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