If you’re just getting started on your National Capital History Day project but aren’t sure where to turn for help, we have some suggestions.
If you’re looking for help finding a suitable primary or secondary source, you might want to contact one of our research mentors (you can find all their contact info here). Professors Matthew Bellamy and Dominique Marshall from Carleton University, librarian Romaine Honey of the Ottawa Public Library and archivist Catherine Butler from Library and Archives Canada are all available to help students find the right book, document or photograph to complete a project.
Secondary sources are generally pretty easy for most students to find, but don’t forget that you want to try to read the most recent scholarship on your subject — that’s where our research mentors can help. They can also assist you in your search for the right primary documents, which are often more difficult to find and analyze.
Not sure where you can find a copy of an Ottawa newspaper from, say, 1867? Librarian Romaine Honey can help — and if you want to set up an appointment to meet with her at the Ottawa Public Library, she’ll give you a personalized tutorial on how to use microfilm, too.
Need help understanding or analyzing a document or book in French? Professor Dominique Marshall is our academic mentor specializing in French projects. She can help direct you to primary and secondary documents in French.
And if you’re filming a documentary, you’ll want to try to interview some experts on camera. But which expert should you contact? Professor Matthew Bellamy has offered to be a liaison for students seeking historians willing to appear in on-camera interviews. All you have to do is contact him, explain your topic and he’ll get back to you as soon as possible to suggest a Carleton expert who would be happy to participate in your project.
You might also be wondering about some useful websites. Our friends at John McCrae Secondary School have come to the rescue with an excellent NCHD support site that lists some excellent links that will help you as you’re researching your project.
Good luck … and don’t forget to register by March 31, 2016!