This is a guide to finding biographical information.


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Databases and Indexes


An Annotated Index of Medieval Women. 1992.

1500 entries on women from more than 30 countries. Spans the years 800 to 1600 with an emphasis on 13th and 14th century England and France. Contains brief biographies and numerous indexes. Mugar CT3220 A56 1992.

Biography and Genealogy Master Index


Boston Globe (Historical)


Chicago Tribune (Historical)


Gale Biography in Context


IBN: Index Bio-Bibliographicus Notorum Hominum. 1973 – .

A work-in-progress, eventually indexing information in 2,000 collective works, covering all countries and time periods. Part B assigns a number to each biographical source; the alphabetical listing of biographees in Part C refers to these numbers. Part C, thus far consisting of more than 80 volumes, is less than one-third of the way through the alphabet. Parts A (general introduction), D (supplementum), and E (general index of references) are forthcoming. Mugar Ref. X Z5301 L7.

 Los Angeles Times (Historical)


New York Times (Historical)


New York Times Obituaries Index. 2 vols. 1970-1980.

Index to thousands of obituaries listed in the New York Times Index from 1858-1978. 1858-1968 in Mugar Current Periodicals Reference CT213 F70; 1969-1978 in Archives Reference CT213 N47 1969-1978.

Personal Name Index to ‘The New York Times Index.’ 22 vols. and supplements. 1976 – .

Compilation of names in The New York Times Index from 1851 onward. Mugar Ref. X Z5301 F28.


Washington Post (Historical)


Women in Particular: An Index to American Women. 1984.

Contains brief biographical information on more than 20,000 American women. Includes sources for further information. There are field/career, religious affiliation, ethnic/racial, and geographical indexes. Mugar HQ1412 H47 1984.

Reference Works

African American National Biography. 8 vols. 2008.

Eight volume set of alphabetically arranged biographical entries for 4100 African Americans, historical and contemporary. Volume 8 includes indexes by birthplace and by subject area and realm of renown; as well as a list of African American prizewinners, medalists, members of Congress, and judges. Mugar Ref. X E185.96 A4466 2008

African American Women: A Biographical Dictionary. 1993.

Contains biographical sketches of approximately 300 women from the Colonial period to the present. Includes appendix listing women by career. Mugar E185.96 A45 1993.

American Men and Women of Science.21st ed. 2003.

Biographical sketches of prominent figures in the sciences. Science and Engineering Library Ref. Q141 F06.

American National Biography


Biographical Dictionary of American Indian History to 1900. 2001.

Contains biographical information for more than 1000 Indians and non-Indians who had an impact on native American history before the 20th century. Mugar Ref. X E89 W35 2001.

Black Women in America. 2nd ed . 3 vols. 2005.

Includes biographical essays on individual black women, both historical and contemporary, and entries on general topics such as Abolition and the Harlem Renaissance. Mugar Ref. X E185.86 B542 2005.

Cambridge Biographical Encyclopedia. 1994.

Contains 15,000+ short biographies, both historical and contemporary, as well as appendix material on political leaders, award winners, religious leaders, and more. Mugar CT103 C26 1994 Storage: Use Request Form.

Contemporary Authors


 Contemporary Literary Criticism


Current Biography. 1940 – .

Yearbook of 250-350 biographical articles on internationally prominent people in the fields of popular culture, sports, science and technology, national and international affairs, business, and the visual and performing arts. 2006+ in Mugar Ref. X CT100 F40; older in stacks.

Dictionary of American Negro Biography. 1982.

Comprehensive biographical dictionary of African-Americans deceased before 1970. Includes national figures as well as those of regional or local significance. Mugar E185.96 L6 1982. Storage: Use Request Form.

Dictionary of Canadian Biography.


Dictionary of Literary Biography


A Dictionary of Political Biography.


Directory of American Scholars: A Biographical Directory. 9th ed. 5 vols. 1999.

Biographical profiles on 24,000+ U.S. and Canadian scholars in the humanities. Includes scholars in history, English, speech, drama, foreign languages, linguistics, philology, philosophy, religion, and law. Mugar LA2311 F42.

Encyclopedia of Native American Biography: Six Hundred Life Stories of Important People from Powhatan to Wilma Mankiller. 1997.

Approximately 600 biographical sketches of native Americans and some non-Indians important in Indian affairs, from the 17th century to the present. Mugar E89 J69 1997.

European Faculty Directory. 2 vols. 1991.

Alphabetical listing of the names and addresses of 315,000 faculty at 1400 European colleges, universities, and polytechnics. Mugar L914.5 E95.

European Immigrant Women in the United States: A Biographical Dictionary. 1994.

Contains biographies of 234 European immigrant women who contributed to shaping the U.S. in such areas as the arts, politics, social work, religion, and medicine. Mugar E184 E95 L58 1994.

International Encyclopedia of the Social & Behavioral Sciences. 26 vols. 2001.

Includes biographical essays on 147 individuals prominent in the social and behavioral sciences. Mugar Ref. X H41 I58 2001.

International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences. 2nd ed. 9 vols. 2008.

Contains lengthy biographical essays on social scientists. Mugar Ref. X H40 A2 I5 2008.

International Who’s Who. 1951 – .

Biographical entries on the most famous and most influential men and women in the world today. Separate section lists reigning royal families and a list of obituaries updates entries for those who died after the text was printed. Mugar Ref. X CT120 F35. Latest year in Reference; previous five years in Storage: Use Request Form.

International Who’s Who of Women. 1997.

Brief biographical profiles on 5500 prominent women worldwide. Indexed by career. Mugar CT3235 I58 1997.Storage: Use Request Form.

The Kings and Queens of Britain.


Larousse Dictionary of Women. 1996.

International in scope, this includes biographical sketches on approximately 3000 women from ancient times to the present. Arranged alphabetically. Mugar HQ1115 L57 1996.

The National Faculty Directory. 2010.

Alphabetical listing, with addresses, of nearly 800,000 teaching faculty at U.S. and some Canadian institutions of higher education. Mugar Ref. X LB2331 F70.

Native American Women: A Biographical Dictionary. 2nd ed. 2001.

Biographical entries for historical and contemporary native American women, with indexes by tribal affiliation, state/province of birth, decade of birth, and primary area of specialization (e.g., activism, medicine-traditional). Mugar Ref. X E98 W8 B38 2001.

Notable American Women, 1607 – 1950: A Biographical Dictionary. 3 vols. 1971.

Biographical sketches of 1359 American women who lived between 1607 and 1950. Mugar Ref. X CT3260 N57.

Notable American Women : A Biographical Dictionary Completing the Twentieth Century. 2004.

Biographical sketches of nearly 500 American women who died between January 1, 1976 and December 31, 1999. Mugar Ref. X CT3260 N5725 2004.

Notable American Women: The Modern Period: A Biographical Dictionary. 1980.

Biographical essays on 442 American women who were born between 1857 and 1943 and who died between 1951 and 1975. Mugar Ref. X CT3260 N573.

Notable Asian Americans. 1995.

Lengthy biographical essays on nearly 250 Asian and Pacific Islander Americans, with occupation and ethnicity indexes. Mugar Ref. X E184 O6 N67 1995.

Notable Black American Women. 1992.

Contains biographical essays on 500 black American women of historical and contemporary significance. Mugar E185.96 N68 1992.

Notable Hispanic American Women. 1993.

Contains approximately 300 entries on historical and contemporary Hispanic American women in a wide range of professions. Mugar E184 S75 N68 1993.

Notable Native Americans. 1995.

Biographical essays on 265+ native North American men and women, 70% of whom are twentieth century individuals. Includes occupational and tribal indexes. Mugar E89 N67 1995.

Oxford Dictionary of National Biography


The Oxford Dictionary of Popes.


The Oxford Dictionary of Saints.


The Scribner Encyclopedia of American Lives. 1998 – .

A continuation of the Dictionary of American Biography, each volume contains scholarly biographies (1000-3000 words in length) of 500+ notable Americans. Mugar Ref. X CT213 S37 1998.

Who’s Who Among African Americans

Current year in Mugar Ref. X (E185.96 .W52 )

Who’s Who in America. 1900 -

Basic biographical data on prominent living Americans. Mugar Ref. X E663 F00. Current year in Reference.

Who’s Who in the Classical World


 Who’s Who in the Twentieth Century


 Who’s Who of American Women

Latest edition in Mugar  Ref. X E176 .F58.

Who Was Who in America

Biographical data on deceased prominent Americans. Historical volume covers 1607-1896. Volumes 1-17 (1897-2006) cover individuals who have died since their listing in Who’s Who in America. Use index to locate individuals. Mugar Ref. X E663 F42.


Biographical Dictionaries and Related Works: An International Bibliography of Approximately 16,000 Collective Biographies. 2nd ed. 2 vols. 1986.

List of biographical dictionaries, including pseudonym, historical, and specialized dictionaries, government manuals, and biographical indexes. General section and sections arranged by country and occupation. Mugar Mugar Ref. X Z5301 S55 1986.

Biographies of American Women: An Annotated Bibliography. 1990.

Contains entries for 1391 biographies of 700 American women, published since the early 1800s. Includes appendix arranged by profession or category. Mugar Z7963 B6 S88 1990. Storage: Use Request Form.