Catalogs, such as MERLIN or MOBIUS, provide an inventory of books held by libraries. Typically they do not search or provide the full text of books or other materials online. Google Book Search or the Hathi Trust search the full text of books, but often can display only portions of the text due to copyright restrictions. Follow the "find in a library" links in these to locate the physical book in a library.
Most of our online databases have only limited coverage prior to the 1980s. You may want to consult older printed indexes to discover articles published in earlier years. These usually give only citations, using abbreviations or a numeric code for the journal titles. These are usually spelled out in the front of each volume. Once you've identified a journal, you need to look it up using our Journal Finder to see if we have the volume/issue you need and where it is, either online or in print.