A Good Place For Students to Start
This site has great timelines (seen above) for 500 year periods, and then people broken up into time periods, then another group for people, events and finally period maps. The best part is that when you decide the era you want, you can then click on the the names, events, etc. and you get more in depth on the side. No it's not enough for a research paper, but enough to get your students on their way.