Primary sources can be found in a variety of library tools:
- Catalogs: OskiCat and Melvyl
- Online book and text collections
- Primary Source databases provided by the Library
includes databases for finding newspaper articles, such as Historical Newspapers (ProQuest) or magazine articles, such as Reader's Guide
- Vetted sites on the web:
Learn more about your topic in advance:
- names of relevant individuals and organizations
- dates of events
- what terminology was used at the time by participants and observers? (ex: negro or colored instead of african american)
Searching OskiCat for primary sources
Search OskiCat for primary sources using keywords and adding terms that denote primary sources, such as:
chinese cookery (mostly US, but...)
(subject) agriculture china sources
Search individuals as author AND as subjects:
(author) chavez, cesar
(subject) chavez, cesar
author: mattachine society
Also try limiting by date:
(keywords) japan cultur*
(subject) japan civilization
years: 1918 to 1939
finding newspapers by country:
(any field) korea* newspapers
books or journals: journals/magazines/newspapers
note: don't confuse the first date of publication of the newspaper with the dates that we actually own - ask for assistance if you're not sure what we have
alternative: ask at the Newspapers/Microforms Room for a computer printout of newspaper titles by geographical location.
Primary Source Databases - Examples
See also: East Asian Library > Electronic Resources
Historical Newspapers (ProQuest)
Includes Chicago Defender (1910-1975). Chicago Tribune (1849-1988). Los Angeles Times (1881-1988). San Francisco Chronicle (1865-1922). New York Times (1851-1994) with Index (1851-1993). Wall Street Journal (1889-1994). Washington Post (1877-1995).
Historical Newspapers Online
Indexes newspapers covering all aspects of British life and world affairs in the 19th and 20th centuries. Contains four major historical resources: Palmer's Index to the Times which covers The Times (London, 1790-1905); The Official Index to the Times (1906-1980); The Historical Index to the New York Times (1863- 1922); and Palmer's Full Text Online (1785-1870).
House of Commons Parliamentary Papers
Provides full-text access to thousands of 18th, 19th and 20th Century Parliamentary Papers. Includes all the "sessional papers" of the British Parliament: bills, reports of committees, papers presented by Royal Commissions and government departments, treaties and international agreements, command papers, and statistics.
People's Daily (Ren Min Ri Bao)
Provides a complete archive of the People's Daily, the leading newspaper in China, from the birth of the People's Republic of China to 2002.
Chinese Cultural Revolution Database
Consists of primary sources on the Cultural Revolution. Containing nearly 30 million words, the database is made up of the Communist Party documents, speeches of Mao Zedong and other leaders, important newspaper and magazine articles, documents of the Red Guards, and more. The materials are indexed in both English and Chinese; however, the entire body of literature is only available in Chinese.
Foreign Office Files for China, 1919-1980
The complete British Foreign Office Files dealing with China, Hong Kong and Taiwan in this period from 1949 (when the Chinese Communist Party won power) to 1976 (the year of Mao Zedong's death). These resources are from the National Archives, Kew, the UK government's official archive.
Primary Source Databases - Sample Searches
Historical Newspapers Online (Times of London, some full text)
NOTE: remember to think about the terminology, spelling and transliteration that might have been used at the time!
Combined Indexes/Palmer's Full Text
1. keyword: soochow
select decade: 1860-1869
2. keyword: major gordon
major heading: china
specify date range: from 1855 January 1
to 1864 December 31 (note: maximum 10 years)
House of Commons Parliamentary Papers
click on full text to view text; pages with hits are marked with a box; pages with tables and graphs are also noted
Contemporary English Language News Sources from Asia
Access World News
Provides full-text information and perspectives from over 600 U.S. and over 700 international sources. Offers strong regional coverage, indexing more than California newspapers such as Contra Costa Times (1995-current), Sacramento Bee (1984-current), San Francisco Chronicle (1985-current), and San Jose Mercury News (1985-current). Search categories include: California newspapers (121 titles), Greater Los Angeles (54 titles), major metropolitan titles (13 titles), Spanish-language news sources (48 titles), the World (almost 2000 titles), US (855 titles).
World News Connection
Translated transcriptions and summaries of radio and television broadcasts, newspaper articles, conference proceedings, periodicals and non-classified technical reports, representing nearly every country in the world. The material is selected and translated to serve the information needs of US government agencies, so is especially strong in the fields of politics, economics, military affairs, environment, and social issues. Reports from 1975-1996 can be found in the Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Electronic Index.
Online news service related to greater China. Includes political, regulatory, social, economic and financial news, information on market trends and companies. In Chinese and English.
Includes over 6,000 individual titles of international, national and local newspapers and wire services; radio and television transcripts; and business, medical, industry, and legislative magazines, journals, and newsletters. Wide geographic coverage and translations from foreign-language sources, as well as news services like the Associated Press, Agence France Press, El Pais and Xinhua (New China) News Agency.
Sample Searches - News Sources from Asia
Access World News
click on the map or the list of continents and browse to the countries you're interested in (this will limit your search to news sources from those countries - mostly English language)
note that China, Hong Kong and Taiwan are of course listed separately
note that the 2nd search box defaults to "date" - change it to all text if you prefer
if the search is too broad, consider changing the search from All Text to Lead/First Paragraph; example:
Lead/First paragraph falun gong
under "Research Countries" click on Browse Sources
2. Filter by: Countries:
you can select Asia, or further down, a specific country)
3. Publication Type: News
select appropriate category (ex: Newspapers)
select each title that you're interested in
above and to the right of "Trail: Publication Type" etc., click on OK Continue (red button)
search terms: aum shinrikyo
once you have search results, you can narrow them down:
search within results: trial*