History Cooperative Continues to Grow
RBT, September 2002
From the News column in the September 2002 Perspectives
The History Cooperative continues to expand and improve its services with the incorporation of limited searches of back issues on JSTOR , and the addition of two new journals. The History Cooperative was formed in March 2000 by the AHA, the Organization of American Historians, the University of Illinois Press, and the National Academy Press. Since then the Cooperative has added the History Teacher, Law and History Review, Western Historical Quarterly, the William and Mary Quarterly, Common-Place, and Labour/Le Travail. These will soon be joined by the Australian journals, Labour History and the Journal of Education History.
Through arrangements made between the Cooperative and JSTOR, AHA members will be able to search the full content from the past three years of the American Historical Review, as well as the tables of contents from the full run of the AHR available at JSTOR (http://www.jstor.org). This will allow readers to search across the full 115 years of the Review. Searches can also extend over the full range of the Journal of American History and the William and Mary Quarterly. The Law and History Review and the History Teacher, which currently have the past two years of their journals on the Cooperative will have similar search capabilities when they are added to the JSTOR archive early next year.
This was made possible by the generous support and assistance of staff at JSTOR, and the diligent efforts of the staff at the University of Illinois Press, led by their electronic publisher, Paul Arroyo. According to Arroyo, "It's been a long, hard road, but we're pleased to finally make it happen."
The expansion of the scope and range of the Cooperative site will be facilitated by a new search engine, which vastly simplifies and speeds searching throughout the site and the links to JSTOR. Researchers will be pleased to find that in addition to offering a more sophisticated way of finding information, it orders the results in a way that allows readers to identify the journal that published the item, the type of material it represents (such as articles, book reviews, or letters to the editors). As a result, readers can quickly pinpoint a particular article, book review, or older item on the JSTOR site and link directly to it. A "Search Builder" function further enhances the researcher's abilities to plumb the depths of a particular article or review, and then to use that as the basis for further searches on the Cooperative site or the World Wide Web as a whole.
Access to the actual content will still be restricted. To access AHR articles on the Cooperative you need to be a member of the Association (and know your membership number) or have access through a subscribing institution. Nonmembers can purchase a two-hour "research pass" for $10, which will allow them to search, read, and print articles from any and all of the journals on the site. Likewise, access to the content on the JSTOR site is limited to members of subscribing institutions and AHA members who obtain the JSTOR subscription option that comes with membership for an added $12.
To further facilitate research, attempts are being made to develop tools to enable seamless cross-site searches of the full content of the JSTOR archives as well as the materials on the Cooperative site. According to the Cooperative's staff, the issues here are a bit more difficult, but they hope to complete this goal within a year.