This is how research was done when I started university in 1975. Oh, the hours I spent going through the card catalogue -- and then reading actual books!
And remember those first computers? Key-punching those endless cards containing the computer codes -- making sure the cards were in precise order so the program would run correctly -- and gawd help you if you dropped your stack of cards, you poor unlucky bastard!
You young whippersnappers have it so easy today, what with your internet and laptops and google! *shakes fist* And do you appreciate it? NO!