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MTH HIS 277: Searching Library Materials

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What is a Primary Source?

Primary sources are original documents or records. They can include:

  • Original research articles
  • Letters, diaries
  • Raw data
  • Interviews
  • Speeches
  • Photographs
  • Audio or video recordings

To search for primary sources online or in the library catalog, combine your keywords with other terms such as:

  • sources
  • diaries
  • correspondence
  • interviews
  • personal narratives
  • pamphlets

What is a Secondary Source?

Secondary Sources:

  • Offer an interpretation or analysis of the primary source materials
  • Second hand accounts of historical events
  • Secondary sources can offer hindsight and/or a critical analysis of an era, event or person.

Examples of Secondary Sources:

  • Journal articles, biographies, books, textbooks, reports on events, websites, encyclopedia, etc.

Primary Source Databases

Search for books and more

Recommended Databases