Skip to main content

The Tambo Paper: A Guide: Primary Sources

A list of references and tools to help you successfully navigate and complete your US History I 1800s research paper

On this page...

Navigate online collections of primary documents by exploring these government and academic sources of information. When examining primary documents and resources, be sure to interpret and analyze them be using the resources below in order to extrapolate and apply any information. 

Ms. Mayo's Tutorials

Coming soon!

  • How to Navigate National Archives and Library of Congress primary sources
  • How to interpret a primary source

Online Primary Sources: General History

How to Analyze a Primary Document

Analyzing Primary Sources

What is a primary source?

Primary sources are documents or artifacts which were created during or near the time an event occurred. They are the creator's thoughts or observations which have not been interpreted by another individual. They may include (but are not limited to):

  • correspondence
  • diaries / journals
  • pamphlets
  • interviews
  • autobiographies
  • newspaper articles
  • creative works (poetic, literary works, musical score, etc.)
  • speeches
  • photographs
  • government documents
  • legal documents
  • artifacts (textiles, pottery, etc.)

Analyzing Secondary Sources

What is a secondary source?

In contrast, a secondary source of information is one that was created later by someone who did not experience first-hand or participate in the events or conditions you’re researching. They tend to provide analysis or commentary on a historical event within a different context. Secondary sources include but are not limited to: 

  • Books
  • Biographies
  • Histories
  • Scholarly journals and articles
  • Textbooks
  • Literary Criticism 
  • Book. art and theater reviews
  • Newspaper and magazine articles that interpret