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)
Sample Searches for Primary Sources in OskiCat
Search OskiCat for primary sources using keywords and adding terms that denote primary sources, such as:
1. (keywords) gay rights sources
(subject) gay rights united states history sources
(keywords) mexican american* vietnam* personal narratives
2. Search individuals as author AND as subjects:
(author) chavez, cesar
(subject) chavez, cesar
author: mattachine society
4. Also try limiting by date:
years: 1945 to 1970
sort by date
5. limit by format:
(keywords) american indian movement pull down "entire collection" menu to "sound recordings"
Sample Searches - Primary Source Databases
Library home > Electronic Resources > By Type > Archival Collections and Primary Sources > Sixties: Primary Documents and Personal Narratives
Browse > Browse Subjects > Themes (examples: gay and lesbian movements; women's movements)
Search > All Subjects: american indian (then select from list)
Primary Source Databases - More Examples
Library databases of primary sources in American history
Ethnic News Watch
Indexes over 200 ethnic, minority, and native press publications. Contains news, culture, and history searchable in both English and Spanish. Also includes a retrospective backfile of titles (1960-1989).
Includes magazines, academic journals, newspapers, newsletters, books, pamphlets, conference proceedings, and government reports that focus on the impact of gender across a broad spectrum of subject areas.
Rock and Roll, Counterculture, Peace and Protest
A collection of original archival material from libraries in Britain and America covering issues such as youth culture, student protest movements, civil rights, women's rights, the Vietnam War, nuclear disarmament and popular culture in Britain and America from 1950 to 1975.
Women and Social Movements in the United States, 1600-2000 (WASM)
Contains 110 document projects and archives with almost 4,200 documents, more than 1,000 images, with more than 2,200 primary authors. Collects and analyzes documents and almost images on the history of women and social movements in the United States between 1600 and 2000. Also includes links to other websites and a dictionary of social movements and organizations.
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).
Readers' Guide Retrospective
Covers more than 500 leading American magazines and journals from 1890 to 1982.
One stop shopping for U.S. congressional publications. Provides index and abstracts of congressional publications back to 1789, including full text of published Congressional Hearings from 1824-present (unpublished until 1979), full text Committee Prints from 1830-present, full text Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports from 1916-present, full text United States Congressional Serial Set (and its various former titles) from 1789-present, and legislative histories from 1970-present.
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.
Primary Sources - Authoritative Web Sites
Library of Congress: American Memory
Browse by Topic: (example: Native American History, Women's History)
A searchable and browseable resource that brings together historical materials from a variety of California institutions, including museums, historical societies, and archives. Contains over 120,000 images; 50,000 pages of documents, letters, and oral histories; and 8,000 guides to collections. Images are organized into thematic and institutional collections, such as historical topics, nature, places, and technology.
Finding Supreme Court Cases
Supreme Court cases
- http://supreme.justia.com/ by year
A fully searchable collection of briefs and other documents related to cases brought before the U.S. Supreme Court. It contains over 150,000 cases and 350,000 documents. Search results are linked to the actual full-text PDF documents.
- Lexis-Nexis Academic (Supreme Court briefs 1936- onwards)
In the "Look up a Legal case" section, click on Landmark Cases
on the left, click on Supreme Court Briefs