Encyclopedias, Dictionaries, Almanacs, and Factbooks


Whether you're trying to verify a simple fact or beginning research on a more elusive topic, the following dictionaries, encyclopedias, almanacs, books of facts, databases, Internet links and other resources are designed to facilitate fact-checking on subjects as varied as history, literature, politics, local and national government, music, and much much more.

Internet Links
A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia
The A.D.A.M. Medical Encyclopedia includes over 4,000 articles about diseases, tests, symptoms, injuries, and surgeries. It also contains an extensive library of medical photographs and illustrations.
American Fact Finder
U.S. Census Bureau data on population, housing, economics and geography.
A free, online, mini reference library, featuring the Columbia Encyclopedia, the American Heritage Dictionary, and other trusted sources. Find definitions, quotations, poems, geographic information, anatomy, and more.
CIA World Factbook
The World Factbook provides information on the history, people, government, economy, geography, communications, transportation, military, and transnational issues for 267 world entities.
Dictionary of English Idioms & Idiomatic Expressions
idiomatic expressions with definitions
Etymology Dictionary
Etymologies are not definitions; they're explanations of what our words meant and how they sounded 600 or 2,000 years ago.
Fact Monster
This searchable site includes an on-line dictionary, thesaurus and encyclopedia and lots of homework help for science, math, social studies, history, English, and sports. There are also games, quizzes, and daily features. From Information Please.   
Farmer's Almanac
Farmers' Almanac provides free long range weather forecasts, home and garden advice, astronomy and full moon information, natural cures and cooking.
An enormous repository of legal information. Includes cases and US law, as well as lawyer information.
Guinnes World Records
Explore and search for world records as posted in the annual Guinness Book of World Records.  A fact may only become a Guinness World Record™ when it’s tested, verified and elevated above all suspicion.
Gray’s Anatomy of the Human Body
The Bartleby.com edition of Gray’s Anatomy of the Human Body features 1,247 vibrant engravings—many in color—from the classic 1918 publication
Kelley Blue Book
An online pricing guide for new and used cars, as well as reviews and ratings.
Law.com Legal Dictionary
Search legal terms and defintions.
Merriam-Webster Dictionary
Look up a word to find its meaning, use the thesaurus to find similar words, use the Spanish-English dicitonary or the Medical dicitonary, learn new words, and more.
Music Dictionary
Definitions and pronunciations of musical terms.
Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH)
The Occupational Outlook Handbook, produced by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), provides information about jobs and their training and education needed, earnings, and expected job prospects for people looking to choose a career.
A website that indexes and reviews current and credible websites on hundreds of topics.
Statistical Abstract of the United States
Features government statistics touching on a stunning number of areas, including population, health, law enforcement, plus lots more. Use the index to best navigate the PDF pages.
Print Resources
American Heritage Dictionary
Alphabetical listing of words giving definitions, word origins, usage and pronunciation. Includes biographical and geographic entries and phrases, as well as slang. Some entries are illustrated.
Chase’s Calendar of Annual Events
Annotated chronological listings for each day of important historical anniversaries, sports events, celebrity birthdays, festivals, presidential proclamations, culinary celebrations, international holidays, religious holidays, astronomical phenomena, conventions, national days, state days, and other events.
Encyclopedia of New York City
Alphabetically arranged essays containing interesting and factual info about neighborhoods, present and past inhabitants, environment, architecture, business, sports, institutions, ethnic and religious groups, government, politics, and transportation in Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, the Bronx, and Staten Island. Includes maps, charts, tables, photographs, and illustrations.
Famous First Facts
Topically arranged, brief paragraphs covering social, cultural and scientific developments in the US. Subject, year, day, name, and geographic indexes are provided for additional access to entries.
Merriam-Webster's Elementary Dictionary
J 423 M
A dictionary for students ages eight to eleven with meanings and uses given for more than 36,000 words also includes explanatory introductory material, new illustrations, and special sections on U.S. presidents, geographical terms, word roots, and a list of literary works used in the text.
The Old Farmer's Almanac for Kids
Offers a compilation of facts and folklore on a range of topics, including weather, gardening, pets, sports, and health.
The Time Almanac
From global trends to national events...outer space to cyberspace...the past to the present...the TIME Almanac contains comprehensive up-to-the-minute facts, statistics, dates and information. Highlights include world statistics and countries, astronomy and space, calendar and holidays, health and nutrition, sports results, business, economy, personal finance, the Internet, web-site guide and more!
World Book Encyclopedia
A 22-volume, highly illustrated, A-Z general encyclopedia for all ages, featuring sections on how to use World Book, other research aids, pronunciation key, a student guide to better writing, speaking, and research skills, and comprehensive index. The World Book editorial staff presents information from the vast reservoir of knowledge in the most accessible and usable form. Editors design World Book articles especially to meet the reference and study needs of students in elementary school, junior high school, and high school.
World Almanac and Book of Facts
Selected useful and interesting political, economic, social, historic, cultural, biographical, scientific, consumer, population statistics and information.