General Collections of Biographical Resources

Biography in ContextBiography in Context

 This resource integrates award-winning biographies from respected Gale sources with related full-text articles from hundreds of magazines and newspapers, as well as tens of thousands of images and links to vetted websites. Search for people—both current and historic from all eras and fields of endeavor—based on name, occupation, nationality, ethnicity, birth/death dates and places, or gender, as well as keyword and full text. Or, combine search criteria to create a highly-targeted custom search.

If you are coming in from outside the Library, you will need your Farmington Community Library Card barcode number and the last 4 digits of your phone number to access this resource.

From A&E. "Search over 25,000 of the greatest lives past and present." Some photos are included.

The Biographical Dictionary

Includes more than 28,000 notable men and women who have shaped our world from ancient times to the present day. The Dictionary can be searched by birth years, death years, positions held, professions, literary and artistic works, achievements, and other keywords. Very brief entries with no photos.

Biographies Sorted by Area of Expertise

Under the general heading of "People" there are seven major categories, each with dozens of sub-categories.

Famous People

Famous People chronicles the lives of notable people throughout the world. The database includes celebrities and high achievers in all fields of human endeavor. Link to famous birthdays, famous quotes, mathematicians, and more.


Arts & Music Biographies

Searchable by artists, albums, songs, styles, and even labels.

The Big Bands Database: An ongoing project dedicated to Bands; to Jazz and to Swing History, and to the music now known to the world as "American Popular Song".

Biography and information web sites for a select group of folk music performers.

Links to hundreds of biography sites for jazz singers and musicians.

Picture gallery with some brief biographical info on over 1,000 composers, with national and alphabetical indexes.

The Internet's original (1988) composers and lyricists database. Search by composer/lyricist last name with the Index Bar.

Africans, African Americans & African Europeans who composed classical music.

The Internet Movie Database originally began by collecting credits from movies. Who made them? Who was in them? As it's grown, more and more information about the people who help make movie and TV magic has been catalogued. Numerous ways to find such information are offered on this page.

Both individuals and groups listed alphabetically with links to assorted web sites.

Find biographies of past and present recipients.

A collection of the sights, sounds, and experiences of artists, songwriters and producers from the era of Chubby Checker through Hip-Hop.

People active in the silent era and people who keep the silent era alive.

Political Biographies

The American Presidency Project (, was established in 1999 as a collaboration between John Woolley and Gerhard Peters at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Its archives contain 86,624 documents related to the study of the Presidency.

All individuals who have served in the U.S. and Continental Congress, and those who have served as delegates to Congress from U.S. Territories. Many images, and the site includes the ability to create drop-down lists, e.g., of all U.S. Presidents who have served in the Congress.

Find links to web sites for a selected collection of Peacemakers.

A project of the Department of Humanities Computing, University of Groningen, The Netherlands, the main body of this hypertext project, which was started in 1994, comes from a number of USIA-publications: An Outline of American History, An Outline of the American Economy, An Outline of American Government, and An Outline of American Literature. The text of these Outlines has not been changed, but they have been enriched with hypertext-links to relevant documents, original essays, other Internet sites, and to other Outlines.

  • POTUS: Presidents of the U.S.

In this Internet Public Library resource you will find background information, election results, cabinet members, notable events, and some points of interest on each of the presidents. Links to biographies, historical documents, audio and video files, and other presidential sites are also included. Select the president you want information about, or search by the name or subject indexes. The subject index ranges from "Ash Lawn" (the home of James Monroe) to "youngest president elected".

Mounted on the White House Web site, this includes short bios of presidents and first ladies. Inaugural addresses and photos are included. Presidents are listed by name or date of office.

Since 1917, when Representative Jeannette Rankin of Montana became the first woman to serve in Congress, a total of 260 women have served as U.S. Representatives or Senators. This Web site, based on the book Women in Congress, contains biographical profiles of former women Members of Congress, links to information about current women Members, essays on the institutional and national events that shaped successive generations of Congresswomen, and images of each woman Member, including rare photos.

Science & Mathematics Biographies

Photos and links of women mathematicians. Sources cited.

Two thousand biographies of famous scientists, which can be found alphabetically or by topic.

A look at the great and often unrecognized pioneers in the field of invention and innovation.

Index to Distinguished Women in women in many scientific fields including agriculture, horticulture, anthropology, archaeology, astronomy, biology and more.

From University of St Andrews Scotland, contains biographies of more than 1,100 mathematicians, many of which are detailed and illustrated. Searchable with alphabetical and chronological indexes.

This MIT site allows searching by inventor's name or invention.

Biographies, including photos, of more than 150 Astronauts in the U.S. Space program since 1995. The More About Astronauts link is also worth following, since it leads to information on some of the Russian cosmonauts involved in U.S./ Russian programs, a memorial page on the Challenger crew, and much more.

Women's Biographies: Notable Women

Uncover the history of African American women: the history of black women in America, from slavery through Reconstruction, Harlem Renaissance and civil rights. Biographies, organizations, events and movements.

Some went where no man had gone before. Others held the torch for women to follow. All faced risks and overcame them. Take a look at our Top Women Adventurers!

Tells the stories of hundreds of women who have helped to shape the course of history. Searchable by name or topic.

The JWA aims "to uncover, chronicle, and transmit the rich legacy of Jewish women." "Discover" profiles Jewish women, past and present, in online exhibits; "Teach" provides primary sources and lesson plans by type...

On this site you will find a selection of exceptional Canadian women who have made outstanding contributions to Canadian society and the world. Each woman's life and achievements are described, followed by a list of resources.

Gale Research observes Women's History Month with a timeline from 4000B.C. to the present and biographies of several dozen women, including Joan of Arc, Sally Hemings, Mother Teresa, Indira Gandhi, Flossie Wong-Staal, and Queen Elizabeth.

This site from Encyclopedia Britannica contains articles on hundreds of American women from 1600 to modern times. Also included are timelines, primary documents, classic Britannica articles, audio and video clips, links to other sites about womens' history...

An annotated list of more than 50 American Women of the 20th century "who left an indelible mark on our nation". Browse decade by decade or in categories of activists and reformers, politics and government, arts and media, space and science.