For the past few years, the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah has been integrating its Catalog with the vast online catalog maintained by OCLC.org. Here is a description of this global service from their website.
About OCLCGenealogists should focus on the WorldCat.org catalog with over 2 billion catalog entries and on its associated website ArchiveGrid.org.
OCLC is a nonprofit global library cooperative providing shared technology services, original research and community programs so that libraries can better fuel learning, research and innovation. Through OCLC, member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. Libraries gain efficiencies through OCLC's WorldShare, a complete set of library management applications and services built on an open, cloud-based platform. It is through collaboration and sharing of the world’s collected knowledge that libraries can help people find answers they need to solve problems. Together as OCLC, member libraries, staff and partners make breakthroughs possible.
Here is the entry in the WorldCat.org catalog.
Showing five locations, including the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, where the item can be found. I can see that it is in the Brigham Young University Library and using WorldCat.org, I have a link to the BYU Library. Where I can find the same book.
Now, even if you do not have the opportunity to be living near to one of the libraries that has the book, you can likely order the book through Interlibrary loan for a small fee.
ArchiveGrid.org is another almost completely ignored source for genealogists. Here is a description of this website.
ArchiveGrid includes over four million records describing archival materials, bringing together information about historical documents, personal papers, family histories, and more. With over 1,000 different archival institutions represented, ArchiveGrid helps researchers looking for primary source materials held in archives, libraries, museums and historical societies.Here are the results of a search on the topic of the Black Hawk War.
These items are collections. Each of the entries gives the number of items in the collection and the size in linear feet. If you click on any of the items, you get a description of the location of the collection.
You can then plan a visit to the Archive and search through the collection.
A big part of being a successful researcher is knowing and understanding the use of these resources.
Here are the previous posts on this subject.