Delving Deep with JSTOR

Anyone who has staffed a reference, adult services, or information desk can tell you the public has no shortage of interesting questions. Since my December 2021 start at Cooper-Siegel Community Library, patrons have requested information from the use of jaguar in the symbolism and mythology of South American countries to scholarly sources on the benefits of breast milk versus baby formula.

I have not searched for academic articles in a few years, though some of my old tricks still work! One of my favorite haunts for humanities-related articles is JSTOR. A child company of Ithaka Harbors, Inc., a nonprofit whose stated mission is to “help the academic community use digital technologies to preserve the scholarly record and to advance research and teaching in sustainable ways,” JSTOR is a major database of academic research materials containing books, journals, and primary sources. Limited access is available to all ACLA card holders through the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh!

For access, just head to and click the “Log in through your library” link up top.

Then, type in “Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.” Click on the top search result to be directed to a login page.

Now, you simply log in with your library card number and PIN, and JSTOR is yours to explore! I have mostly used JSTOR for humanities- and history-related research, but many, many records and genres of academic research live here. You can also search by what articles you can access instead of being teased by those inaccessible.

Because of the times we live in, patrons may also be interested in medical research. For help with those inquiries, take a look at our 2020 post about the stellar NIH-affiliated database MedlinePlus.

Happy (academic) reading!

Cameron R.S. Smith, Cooper-Siegel Community Library