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How to Find Primary and Non-Database Resources

A guide for finding physical collections to use in your research.

What is a primary source?

Primary sources are invaluable to the research process. They provide first hand information and do not provide an analysis of the information presented, unlike secondary resources. 


Types of primary sources: contemporary (of the time) printed materials, photographs, a/v materials, organizational records, autobiographies, memoirs, oral histories, and interviews, journals, letters, scrapbooks, diaries, and original research data.How to analyze a primary source: type of source, time period, original audience, purpose, and tone? What can you learn from this source? How might you use it in your research?

Where can I find Primary Sources?