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History Student Resources

Library and Research Resources

Saint Louis University’s Pius XII Memorial Library, which contains more than 2.5 million volumes, is an exceptionally rich resource. In addition to a wealth of secondary sources, journals, printed primary sources, microfilmed primary sources, critical editions and bibliographies to be found in the main collection, the Vatican Film Library houses microfilms of more than 38,000 manuscripts from the Vatican Library in Rome, founded by Nicholas V in 1450.

In addition, there are microfilms of medieval and Renaissance manuscripts collected from 106 libraries all over continental Europe and England. The late Paul Oskar Kristeller and the late Charles Ermatinger collaborated in the early 1950s to bring to St. Louis on microfilm virtually every manuscript of importance to the humanist revival of Greek and Latin learning, as well as important documents relating to the history of Catholic and Protestant reform during the early modern period, and Renaissance science and medicine.

Many of the Vatican's early printed books are also on microfilm, including the Jesuitica collection documenting the activities of Jesuits throughout the world.

The Saint Louis University Museum contains artifacts (formerly housed at St. Stanislaus in Florissant, Missouri) of the earliest Jesuit missions to the New World. The Saint Louis Room houses more than 4,200 books printed between 1478 and 1700, and well more than a hundred manuscripts and manuscript illuminations from late medieval France, Italy and Spain. Finally, the library system provides rapid interlibrary loan access to many libraries across the state of Missouri.

Off-Campus Resources

SLU's history students have access off-campus to the Grolier collection of manuscripts and printed books at the St. Louis Public Library, the Department of Rare Books and Special Collections at the Washington University Hilltop Campus, early printed books collection at the Missouri Botanical Garden and the Paracelsus collection at the Washington University School of Medicine, considered to be the best Paracelsus collection in the world.

The Center for Reformation Research at Concordia Seminary in nearby Clayton, Missouri also provides a wealth of primary sources and reference materials for the Protestant Reformation.

Phi Alpha Theta

Phi Alpha Theta is a professional society whose mission is to promote the study of history through the encouragement of research, good teaching, publication, and the exchange of learning and ideas among historians. It seeks to bring students, teachers and writers of history together for intellectual and social exchanges, which promote and assist historical research and publication by members in a variety of ways.

In order to be considered for membership in the Mu Alpha Chapter of Phi Alpha Theta at Saint Louis University, undergraduate students must have completed at least 12 semester hours in history. They must also have a GPA of 3.0 or better overall with a GPA of at least 3.1 in history.

Graduate students must have completed a minimum of 12 semester hours towards their master's degree in history and have a GPA above 3.5. For more information, email

Phi Alpha Theta also sponsors an undergraduate conference every year. 


History Graduate Student Association

The SLU History Graduate Student Association works to foster community, cooperation and communication among the graduate students by organizing student-led social events and collaborative programs for academic, professional and personal support. All history graduate students are considered members of the HGSA and are welcome to attend and participate at all meetings and events.

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Graduate Funding Opportunities

The Department of History offers a number of teaching and research assistantships, as well as fellowships, to assist graduate students. Students holding teaching assistantships will be assigned to lead weekly discussion sections in introductory history classes. Teaching assistants are required to take a teaching practicum to familiarize themselves with textbooks, audio-visual materials and teaching techniques on the undergraduate level. Advanced students will also be offered opportunities to teach their own undergraduate courses.

Research assistantships are available through the department, the College of Arts and Sciences, faculty grants and endowed funds. In addition, the department provides travel and research support through an internal fund.

Graduate fellowships are offered through the Center for Medieval and Renaissance Studies and the College of Arts and Sciences. Assistantships are renewable for up to five years for students demonstrating progress toward the degree and performing duties satisfactorily.

Department of History Travel Funds for Graduate Students

The 1818 Fund provides reimbursement of expenses for graduate students to present papers or participate in panels at conferences, as well as reimbursement of expenses for research travel to collections.

Graduate students who apply for travel money for conferences in Europe or for travel to collections in Europe will automatically be considered for grants from the Mathews Fund.

The deadline for both funds is September 15 and March 15, although applications will be considered beyond that date if there are still resources available. To apply, fill out the College of Arts and Sciences travel pre-approval form (domestic or international, as appropriate), but instead of sending it to the College of Arts and Sciences, send it to Christine Pudlowski at

For additional assistantship opportunities, visit SLU’s Office of Graduate Education.