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Primary Sources -- History and Humanities

Complete guide to using primary sources in historical research

Primary Sources Published as Books

Many times personal papers or memoirs will be collected, edited and published as a book.  These can be found using library catalogs and other book search tools.

If you have the names of historical figures and other people related to your interest, you can search on their names as authors.

Subject and keyword searches on your topic will bring up primary sources along with secondary.  You may need to browse through them to identify which ones include primary source material.  If you have a very large results list you may want to add terms to your search as follows:

Subject terms for primary sources in the catalog: All Fields terms for primary sources:
  • Diaries
  • Correspondence
  • Oral history
  • Personal narratives
  • Sources
  • Journal
  • Letters
  • Memoirs
  • Autobiography
  • Annals
  • Chronicle*
  • Histories

Books and e-Books

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