Searching in the Montana History Portal
1. Searching within the Portal
Search from the home page
The front page of the Portal offers two ways to begin a search. It can begin from the sidebar or the homepage.
The first example will search from the home page.
This example searches the term "geology". This will search for all references to the word "geology" in the Portal.
Once it has found every reference to the term it will display many options.
Descriptions will be shown below in yellow.
Section 1 displays the number of results found and the option to filter results by various attributes
Section 2 can refine the search by specifying how the Portal interacts with keywords and terms
Section 3 has options to save, share or even download the search results as a whole
Section 4 controls page display, how results are organized and navigation arrows to page through results
Section 5 is used to reset to a new blank search
Search from the side bar
Searching with the button in the side bar brings up a new search field.
Each of the buttons below the search field helps to set the perameters for your search.
Format: Uncheck all and then go back in to select specific options to indicate the sorts of digital items you are looking for.
To see everything available leave them all checked.
Within Data: Use this to define how your search terms will work.
You can search just the title of the resource, all the fields within the data, or all the fields and the content to find your search term.
Date: Select a range of dates to keep your search between specific timeframes.
Search For: Select which words you want to search.
All Keywords will search for everything that has any of the words.
If the search was for Archie Bray, All keywords would search both Archie and Bray separately or together.
Any Keywords will turn up results that might just have Archie or just Bray.
Exact Phrase Match will provide results that specifically come up as “Archie Bray”.
This is important to know about if you are searching for a specific name or title.
Once you have determined search perameters click on the magnifying glass on the search bar to search.
4. Facets (Item Types)
When results appear there is another chance to narrow them by using facets on the left side.
Clicking into the Format facet will reveal the amount of each type available.
To see a specific resource, simply click that Item Type. Continue using this method to drill down.
For example, Clicking into Document will reveal the seven documents.
Within these items there is a link to the number of page hits within the documents.
Click the Preview link to see those page hits
Alternatively, clicking on the image of the document will start from the beginning of the document.
Click the panels on the bottom of the screen or use the slider bar to move through the document.
Other facets include:
Starts with can be used to select a letter you would like it to start with. For example, "M" pulls up all of the documents from this search beginning with the letter M.
Has the Following will allow filtering by other features like Geotags and OCR.
These abilities are not yet included on everything but they are growing with the collection.
OCR means Optical Character Recognition.
That means the text inside the document has been made machine readable beyond the data that people have input to describe the resource (metadata).
For example it recognized the words we were searching for within the old typewritten pages of the document.
Geotags are another kind of metadata used to identify geographic locations within the materials.
The examples shown below have geographic coverage
These last facets Within Data and Date will give you the opportunity to go back and narrow down the dates or change the filters in place for titles, fields, and content.
You may wish to remove all filters and start over.
5. Saving items to your Collection
To save items for later, make sure to check the checkbox on the upper left corner of the item to save it to your collection.
*You must be logged in for this to work
6. Search History
The My History section will also save your searches but only if you are logged in and only for the current session.
Once you have navigated away from the Portal the history section will reset, so make sure to save to your collection if you found something that you would like to revisit.
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