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The following publications are examples of books that provide guidance on the methods, principles, historiography and procedures of architectural history, how to interpret the built environment, and how to do research in architectural history. Please see the Environmental Design Library guide:
Designing a Research Strategy for a general guide to the steps in research and term paper or thesis writing, and the methodology section of Vernacular Architecture Resources or for more specialized methodology sources.
Methodology and historiography
Architectural theory, from the Renaissance to the present: 89 essays on 117 treatises. Koln; Los Angeles: Taschen, 2003.
Art history's history, by Vernon Hyde Minor. 2nd ed. Upper Saddle River, N.J.: Prentice Hall, 2001.
The content of the form, narrative discourse and historical representation, by Hayden White. Baltimore John Hopkins University Press, 1987.
The critical historians of art, by Michael Podro. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1982.
Experimental sociology of architecture: a guide to theory, research, and literature, by Guy Ankerl. The Hague; New York: Mouton, 1981. New Babylon studies in the social sciences, 36.
The favored circle: the social foundations of architectural distinction, by Garry Stevens. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1998. "Form and User: Style, Mode, Fashion and the Artifact," by Dell Upton, in
, ed. Gerald L. Pocius . St. John's, Nfld.: Institute of Social and Economic Research, Memorial University of Newfoundland, c1991. Social and economic papers, no. 19. Living in a Material World: Canadian and American Approaches to Material Culture Studies "Historiography and modern architecture, pts I and II" ed. by Stanford Anderson in
, vol. 44 no. 3, p. 130–55, May, 1991, and vol. 44 no. 4, p.194–210, Aug. 1991. Journal of architectural education
The historiography of modern architecture, UCB Only by Panayotis Tournikiotis. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 1999.
History and social theory, by Peter Burke. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1993, c1992.
How to investigate the history of a building. (History Detectives, PBS). Clear guide to researching a building's history.
The idea of history, by R. G. Collingwood. N.Y.: Oxford University Press, 1956. Galaxy book 1. Intersections: architectural histories and critical theories. Iain Borden and Jane Rendell, eds.London; New York: Routledge, 2000.
On the methodology of architectural history, guest editor, Demetri Porphyrios. London: Architectural Design; New York, N.Y.: St. Martin's Press, 1981. Architectural design profile; 
Principles of architectural history; the four phases of architectural style, 1420–1900, by Paul Frankl. Translated and edited by James F. O'Gorman. [Cambridge, Mass., MIT Press, 1968].
Principles of art history; the problem of the development of style in later art, by Heinrich Wolfflin, Translated by M. D. Hottinger. [New York] Dover Publications [194–?]
Reading architectural history, by Dana Arnold. London; New York: Routledge, 2002.
The rise of architectural history, by David Watkin. London: Architectural Press; Westfield, NJ: Eastview Editions, 1980.
The study of architectural history, by Bruce Allsopp. [New York] Praeger . Relationship between architectural history and practice; nature of architectural history.
Summerson and Hitchcock: centenary essays on architectural historiography. New Haven: Published for the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art [and] the Yale Center for British Art [by] Yale University Press, 2006.
Theories and history of architecture, by Manfredo Tafuri, translated from the Italian by Giorgio Verrecchia. New York Harper & Row, 1980. (Series: Icon editions).
Varieties of cultural history, by Peter Burke. Ithaca, N.Y.: Cornell University Press, 1997.
Visual methodologies, by Gillian Rose. London: Thousand Oaks, CAlif. ; Sage Publications, 2007.
Words and buildings: a vocabulary of modern architecture, by Adrian Forty. New York, N.Y.: Thames & Hudson, 2000. Focuses on the language of modern architecture and includes a "historical and critical dictionary" of essays exploring the historical framework and theoretical meaning of 18 words that form the "core vocabulary of modernist architectural criticism."
The writing of history, by Michel de Certeau; translated by Tom Conley. New York: Columbia University Press, 1988. European
Process, Field Work
Guide to recording historic buildings, ICOMOS. London; Boston: Butterworth Architecture, 1990.
HABS/HAER guidelines: recording structures and sites with HABS measured drawings, by Joseph D. Balachowski]. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Dept. of the Interior, National Park Service, Cultural Resources, Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record, 
Identifying American architecture: a pictorial guide to styles and terms, 1600–1945, by James J.-G. Blumenson. 2d ed.,rev. and enl. Nashville: American Association for State and Local History, 1981. Easy-to-use guide to identifying the most common American building styles.
Instructions for recording historical resources (PDF), California Office of Historic Preservation. Sacramento: Office of Historic Preservation, 1995.
Measured drawing for architects, by Robert Chitham. London: Architectural Press, 1980.
Recording historic structures, ed. by John A. Burns and the staff of the Historic American Buildings Survey, Historic American Engineering Record, and Historic American Landscapes Survey, National Park Service, U.S. Department of the Interior, 2004.
Secretary of the Interior's standards and guidelines for architectural and engineering documentation: HABS/HAER. Washington, D.C.: Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record, Cultural Resources Program, U.S. Dept. of the Interior, National Park Service, 1990.
Vernacular architecture : an illustrated handbook , by R.W. Brunskill. 4th ed. London: Faber, 2000. British emphasis, but excellent techniques for investigating vernacular architecture.
Interpreting the Built Environment
Architecture as space, how to look at architecture, by Bruno Zevi; ed. by Joseph A. Barry. Rev. ed. New York: Horizon Press,  Includes concepts of space through many eras, and different interpretations of architecture—political, religious, scientific, etc.
Architecture everywhere: investigating the built environment of your community, by Joseph A. Weber. Tucson, AZ: Zephyr Pr., 2000.
Architecture, form, space & order, by Francis D.K. Ching. 4th ed. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 2014.
The arts: a comparative approach to the arts of painting, sculpture, architecture, music, and drama. Thomas A. Walters. Lanham, Md.: University Press of America, 2000.
Buildings and society, essays on the social development of the built environment, edited by Anthony D. King. London; Boston: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1980.
Cities & people, a social and architectural history. Mark Girouard. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1985.
Close-up, how to read the American city, Grady Clay. Phoenix, ed. Chicago: Univ. of Chicago Pr., 1980.
Constructing ideas: understanding architecture, Lance LaVine. Dubuque, Iowa: Kendall/Hunt Pub., 2004. "Describing architecture," in
Architecture and ornament: an illustrated dictionary. Margaret Maliszewski-Pickart. Jefferson, N.C.: McFarland & Co., 1998, p. 183–95.
Essentials in architecture; an analysis of the principles & qualities to be looked for in buildings, by John Belcher. London, B.T. Batsford, 1907. Truth, beauty, qualities, factors, materials.
Everyday architecture of the Mid-Atlantic, looking at buildings and landscapes. Gabrielle M. Lanier and Bernard L. Herman. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1997. Creating the North American landscape.
Experiencing architecture. Steen I. Rasmussen. [Transl. from Danish by Eve Wendt. 2d US ed.]. Cambridge [Mass.] M.I.T. Press, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, 1962.
Houses and homes, exploring their history, by Barbara J. Howe .. [et al.]. Nashville, Tenn.: American Association for State and Local History, 1987. Nearby history series ; 2.
The interior dimension, a theoretical approach to enclosed space, by Joy Monice Malnar, Frank Vodvarka. New York: Van Nostrand Reinhold, 1992.
The Interpretation of ordinary landscapes, geographical essays, by D. W. Meinig, editor; J. B. Jackson. et al. New York: Oxford University Press, 1979.
Landscape in sight, looking at America, by John Brinckerhoff Jackson; edited by Helen Lefkowitz Horowitz. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1997.
Looking at buildings, by Christopher Trent. London, Phoenix House; New York, Roy Publishers .
Looking at cities, by Allan B. Jacobs, Cambridge, MA: Harvard Univ. Press, 1985. See especially Chapter 3, "Clues," pp.30–83. Very useful presentation of the physical indicators that help the observer interpret an urban environment.
The meaning of architecture; an essay in constructive criticism, by Irving K. Pond. Boston, Marshall Jones company, 1918. Dated, but interesting, discussion of the "sublime essence of . (the) spirit .(of) the great architecture of the past."
The meaning of the built environment, a nonverbal communication approach, by Amos Rapoport. Tucson: University of Arizona Press, 1990.
Meaningful architecture: social interpretations of buildings, edited by Martin Locock. Aldershot; Brookfield, Vt., USA: Avebury; 1994. Worldwide archaeology series; 9.
Nearby history: exploring the past around you, by David E. Kyvig and Myron A. Marty. 2nd ed. Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira Pr., 2000. Excellent, well-organized manual. 2010 ed. available as ebook.
Observing and interpreting the urban environment: case study, Prescott & South Prescott, Oakland, California, by Allan B. Jacobs. Berkeley: Institute of Urban and Regional Development, Univ. of California, Berkeley, 1982. Working paper no. 374. A case study demonstrating techniques of community observation and anaylsis.
On doing local history: reflections on what local historians do, why, and what it means, by Carol Kammen. Nashville, TN: American Association for State and Local History, 1986. See Chapter 2, "Researching local history," pp. 43–76.
Public places, exploring their history, by Gerald A. Danzer. Nashville, TN: American Association for State and Local History, 1987.
Reading architectural plans: for residential and commercial construction, by Ernest R. Weidhaas. 5th ed. Upper Saddle River, NJ : Prentice Hall, c2002.
Real places, an unconventional guide to America's generic landscape, by Grady Clay. Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 1994.
Right before your eyes, penetrating the urban environment, Grady Clay. Washington, D.C.: American Planning Association; Chicago, Ill.: Planners Press, 1987.
Streets, critical perspectives on public space, edited by Zeynep Celik, Diane Favro, Richard Ingersoll. Berkeley: University of California Press, 1994.
The study of urban geography, Harold Carter. 4th ed. London; New York: Edward Arnold; New York: Co-published by Halsted Press, 1995. 4th ed on order for EnvDesign.
Town architecture: Blacksburg, understanding a Virginia town, by Donna Dunay. [Blacksburg, Va.]: Town of Blacksburg, the College of Architecture and Urban Studies, and the Extension Division, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, 1986.
Understanding architecture: an introduction to architecture and architectural history, Hazel Conway and Rowan Roenisch. 2nd ed. London; New York: Routledge, 2005
Understanding architecture, its elements, history, and meaning. Leland M. Roth.2nd. ed. Boulder, Colo. : Westview Press, c2007.
Understanding buildings, a multidisciplinary approach, Esmond Reid. London: Construction Press, 1984. "Understanding the Use of Space: An Ethnoarchaeological Approach," by Susan Kent, in
, ed. Susan Kent . New York: Columbia University Press, 1987. Method and Theory for Activity Area Research: An Ethnoarchaeological Approach