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United States Military Academy Library

Luzon: Additional Secondary Sources

Publications from the Center for Military History

The Mission of the Center for Military History (CMH): "To accurately collect, preserve, interpret, and express the Army's history and material culture to more broadly educate and develop our force, the military profession, and the nation." To that end, CMH publications include many scholarly secondary sources materials that can serve as excellent basis and context for research on military operations. Some examples are described below.

Bibliographies of the Luzon Campaign

One type of resource very useful in the initial stages of doing research for a history paper is a bibliography.  Many persons, upon hearing the word "bibliography" think only of a listing of sources at the end of a research paper, journal article, book, etc.  While those are certainly examples of bibliographies, the term "bibliography" has a broader meaning. Bibliography etymologically means "writing about books".  Practically that can encompass many things.  One type of bibliography is a subject bibliography: a list of sources that the compiler of the bibliography (or "bibliographer") located, identified, and examined and judged were useful and relevant for research on a particular subject.  Subject bibliographies come in many forms; some are compiled by historians, curators, archivists, librarians at a particular institution; other bibliographies are actually published as books themselves.   An "annotated bibliography" not only lists works on a certain subject  but provides the bibliographer's short evaluative statement on the work, commenting on strengths, weakness, how it might be useful, etc.


Bibliographies of all types are very important to military history, and subject bibliographies of the Pacific war in general, and the campaign to liberate Luzon in particular may be of great use to you in the initial stages of your research.  They can help you identify additional secondary sources as well as primary sources that go beyond the ones which you have already been provided.  


IMPORTANT: one of the most useful aspects of a subject bibliography is that it can help you identify works that would not be likely to appear in online searches.  This is because a work might be *about* a certain subject even though keywords related to that subject do not appear in the title nor consistently enough in the text to generate a return in electronic search results.  You should learn how to use both online searching of various databases *and* bibliographies in combination


See below for some examples.

Sbrega, John J. The War Against Japan, 1941-1945: An Annotated Bibliography. New York: Garland, 1989.

     Here is an example of a published, book-length annotated bibliography.  Exploring Sbrega's work will give a sense of how an extensive annotated bibliography can help you identify both primary and secondary sources for your own research.   The link above is to a record in the USMA Library's catalog for this book.  You can use that record to locate it in the USMA Library.

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