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HIST 1250: Early America

What is a Primary Source?

Primary sources are items that are directly associated with their producer or user and the period in which they are created.  They reflect the authority and perspective of someone who directly experiences what they are detailing. 

Primary sources can be found in:

  • Collections housed in libraries or archives
  • Digital format through online databases
  • Freely available collections on the Internet
  • Published in books and microforms

Evaluating a Primary Source

The Library of Congress has a great tool for helping you evaluate potential primary sources:

Library Databases

Digital Collections Outside BGSU