Here we talk about some books that may help you in researching magazine cover art. Researching may just mean "looking at."
The standard text on the history of magazines in America is Frank Luther Mott's five-volume History of American Magazines. It's in print from Harvard's Belknap Press, at a high price. Amazon doesn't seem to know about the fifth volume, but I'll bet ABE does. If you're not made of money you can find it at large public and university libraries.
Richard Russell and Elaine Gross Russell, the Antique Trader Vintage Magazines Price Guide. This is the book to read to find out what your magazines are worth, how much you should pay for them on eBay, and what prices to charge for them if you sell them.
Richard E. Clear and David T. Alexander, Old Magazines / Identification and Value Guide
L-W Book Sales, Old Magazines with Year 2003 Price Guide
David K. Henkel, Collectible Magazines: Identification and Price Guide (2nd Edition)
Peter Haining, The Classic Era of American Pulp Magazines
Ackerman and Linaweaver,
Worlds of Tomorrow: The Amazing Universe of Science Fiction Art
Patricia J. Broder,
Dean Cornwell: Dean of Illustrators
Dell and Reed,
Visions of Adventure: N. C. Wyeth and the Brandywine Artists
The Illustrator in America : 1860-2000
Another book by Peter Haining, The Classic Era of Crime Fiction
[multiple authors], It's a Man's World: Men's Adventure Magazines, the Postwar Pulps
Darrell C. Richardson,
Those Macabre Pulps
Robert Lesser, Pulp Art: Original Cover Paintings for the Great American Pulp Magazines
Uncovered: The Hidden Art of the Girlie Pulp
Walter Baumhofer : Pulp Art Masters
Belarski Pulp Art Masters
Bad Girls of Pulp Fiction