Database Destinations - Gale eBooks

Published Wednesday, September 6, 2023

It’s the middle of the night and a rousing argument breaks out before bedtime about who the Soviet foreign minister was at the end of World War II. Sure, that may seem obscure now but his last name remains with us in nightly news reports from around the world. Still can’t think of it? The Edwardsville Public Library can settle this . . . even in the middle of the night! All you need is an internet connection and your Edwardsville Library card.

Where can you find the answer and all you ever wanted to know about this man whose name has become synonymous with explosions? Well, just navigate to the Resources button on the Edwardsville Public Library website home page and click on Gale eBooks.

The Gale eBooks page resources are divided by topic. Since we are looking for information on the Soviet Union, let’s try the "Cold War." Cold War should be under history…there it is…The Cold War. Click on the link and it takes you to the entire set.

Hist books

To the right of the page you will see a "Search within Publication" button.

Cold war

If we search "Foreign Minister" we get a list of six results. The first result is from the volume The Cold War Begins.

Cold war 2

If you click on the link and read through the page you find this passage:

“On April 23, 1945, Truman scolded Soviet foreign minister Vyacheslav Mikhaylovic Molotov for these violations of the Yalta Accords [rounding up Polish dissidents under the guise of a meeting] and, when Molotov protested such undiplomatic conduct, replied, “Carry out your agreements and you won't get talked to like that.”

If you want a photo here is one pulled from the library’s MasterFILE Premier database.


So there you have it. Molotov Cocktails get their name from Soviet Foreign Minister Vyacheslav Mikhaylovic Molotov. Argument settled. Maybe your household is not interested in the history of Soviet politicians and explosives -- maybe you need quick information about music, or travel or who cursed Midas with the golden touch (it was Dionysus and you can find it in Gods and Goddesses in Greek Mythology on page 47.)

Gale’s books cover a wide range of subjects from several different perspectives and are great for learning a lot about a subject in a short time. Your Edwardsville Library card makes it all available from your phone or computer.

So let’s say that this time it’s not an argument, but just a real desire to know a lot more about a subject that comes out of nowhere.

Like lots of people you may have watched the hit series, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel, and the first couple of seasons focus on clubs and coffee houses that dotted the Greenwich Village area of New York in the late 1950s and early 1960s. It’s time to learn more about the real world the TV show portrays and we can start with Greenwich Village.

Greenw music

Another photo from our MasterFILE Premier database.

If you search Greenwich Village in Gale you will get almost 500 results. You can click on any of these and to see if any sound interesting or you can click the Topic finder on the right hand side of the page.

Filter results

From here Gale will generate a list of topics associated with your search and the size of the shape represents the number of articles that apply. Click on any of them and the articles appear to the right of the shapes.

Result shape

Here are some of the things that you will find.

In the Rough Guide to New York City you can discover that Greenwich Village was “a mostly rural retreat until the yellow fever epidemic of 1822, when it became highly sought-after as a wealthy refuge from infected downtown streets.” You will also read that it has been the aritistic heart of New York City since the 1920s.

Rough guide

In that same volume you can learn about famous location like Washington Square Park, where Mrs. Maisel protested against a roadway expansion, and events like the Triangle Shirtwaist Fire in 1911, which led to major changes in American life and society.

Greenwich Village is also the site of one of the most consequential civil rights protests of the twentieth century, the Stonewall Riots of 1969. Want to know more about them? The Stonewall Riots by Laurie Collier Hillstrom, part of the Defining Moments series will give you everything you need to know.


In the St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture you can read about the Beat Movement, which wasn’t born in Greenwich Village but helped to fuel the movement and helped to give rise to the image of the Beatnik. The Village is also home to The Gaslight Café, where much of the first season of The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel takes place. The Gaslight Café was a real club where acts like Bob Dylan and Peter, Paul, and Mary performed. The St. James Encyclopedia of Popular Culture has more on the club and the performers who inhabited the stage.

Pop cultire

You can also find other films and shows set in Greenwich village. In VideoHound's Golden Movie Retriever you can see that both Audrey Hepburn’s Funny Face (1957), and My Sister Eileen with Rosalind Russell, are set in The Village.

Greenwich Village is also the name of one of the many films made by the Four Step Brothers, a groundbreaking dance group that got their start with Duke Ellington at the Cotton Club during the Harlem Renaissance. You can learn all about them in Gale’s Contemporary Black Biography.

Black biography

There are so many fun and interesting topics to learn about about Greenwich Village and almost anything else. Reference book sets that provided answers to all of these questions once took up a whole wing of a library, and you had to make a trip to use them. Let’s face it, most libraries don’t have a middle of the night argument/curiosity service. But now these sets are available online 24/7, and all you need is your Edwardsville Library barcode number. So, take some time and log-in to Gale’s eBooks on the Edwardsville Public Library website and get lost in a new topic you just need to know more about.

Streaming Movie of the Week

Kanopy is a video streaming site that all Edwardsville Public Library cardholders have free access to. Hoopla offers access to a multitude of movies, shows, and documentaries to all Edwardsville Public Library Card Holders.

Among the Jazz Greats who spent hard time on the stages of Greenwich Village clubs like the Village Vanguard was one of the greatest piano players of our time, Thelonious Monk. Monk played with such Jazz innovators as Sonny Rollins, John Coletrane, Max Roach, and Art Blakey. Monk, from director Michael Blackwood and Christian Blackwood who have made hundreds of documentaries about people such as George Balanchine and Phillip Glass, is a two part trip through the music and mind of one of the geniuses of American music.

Monk on Kanopy
About the Author

Greg is the Head Librarian Adult Services. He is an author and local music historian with a passion for research. He enjoys reading Tolkien and Heinlein in equal measure. He is always looking for the next hard reference question to challenge his reference skills.