I remember being in school and having a hard time find references. I am only thirty, and I can't believe how much things have changed. Now, instead of not being able to find references for papers, there is actually too much information out there. It is hard to decipher what is a good source, and what is just made up. A good source to find reputable references is Questia. They have 0ver 5,000 free books for you to use. Since it is online, you do not have to ever worry about a book being checked out or the library being closed.
They also have some very interesting yet very cool tools that you can use. Unlike books you actually get from a library, you are able to write in the margins and highlight passages. No need for index cards! There are also tools that help you to create footnotes and bibliography pages. I know that was always my pet peeve. I hate doing bibliography pages. I could never remember the rules. It also allows you to pick which style you need to use (Chicago Manual of Style, Turabian, MLA, APA, etc.). You also have your own personal bookshelf that you can keep the books you use most often on. They even have the reference books American Heritage Dictionary, Columbia Encyclopedia Sixth Edition, and Roget's II: The New Thesaurus, Third Edition.
I am completely jealous. I remember using a typewriter to write papers when I was younger. Now, my three year old uses a computer almost as good as her mom. This is a site I wish that was around when I was younger. I could have used it.