Remember that books tend to be about broader topics than articles and search accordingly.
Start by looking for books on a topic that have been recommended to you by your professor or from a bibliography. Once located leverage the additional information from the search (Library of Congress Subject Headings to help you find more materials.
UVM doesn't own everything. When doing comprehensive research use Interlibrary Loan. It's fast and free!
There are more possible Subjects Heading related to the topics you might be working with this semester but here is a sample you might find useful for your work or as examples:
Start with American History and Life or Historical Abstracts. When searching these two databases take advantage of the presence of Subject Headings and the ability to set a historical time period for your search.
When searching for articles using UVM databases, watch for this icon:
Use this button to help you: