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HathiTrust Guide

What is a HathiTrust?

HathiTrust is a digital library dedicated to the preservation and access of books and other printed material.
  • HathiTrust consists of millions of books scanned from the collections of large university libraries, all cross-searchable.
  • HathiTrust is free to access.
  • People affiliated with MU, when logged in, are able to read and download full text materials not restricted by copyright. People who are not logged in are able to read full text materials, but downloads are restricted to short sections.
  • Only bibliographic information (author, title, etc. ) can be viewed for materials subject to copyright. Exceptions on access are made for people with disabilities. Contact Cindy Cotner, Head, Access Services, for additional information.

Why Use HathiTrust?

  1. Find free full text of books on any topic that are not restricted by copyright or are available free via Creative Commons licensing.
  2. Find music scores that you can use without licensing restrictions
  3. Use the Advanced Full-Text search for "needle in a haystack" full text searches on people, places or events of interest:, across millions of scanned books
Examples of advanced full-text searches:
  • search all books with the exact phrase Boone County, Mo in the subject for the exact phrase Eli Bass in full text + all fields
  • search all books with exact phrase  Mexican War in the subject for instances of any of the words dysentery smallpox in full text + all fields
  • search all books with all the words Aaron Burr in the author for the exact phrase Alexander Hamilton in full text + all fields
  • search for the exact phrase Donald Trump in full text + all fields within books published up to 2015 in the Spanish language [Note: to specify publication date and language, you will use some of the Additional Search Options below the search boxes.]
  • search all books with any of the words cookbook recipes in the title for the word pawpaw in full text + all fields


Advanced Uses of HathiTrust: Collections and Text Analysis

  • Collections allow you to bring your selection of HathiTrust books together as one cross-searchable group (examples: all books about Boone County, Missouri; all publications by a certain government agency during a certain timeframe; all books about Shriners, etc.)
  • Collections can be exported for big-data text analysis using tools provided by the HathiTrust Research Center.