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History of the United States HY201

What are Primary Sources?

Primary sources are original materials, such as a first-hand accounts, events, or works of literature or art, that have not been interpreted by anyone other than their creators. Common types of primary sources are diaries, letters, manuscripts, journals, interviews, memoirs, autobiographies, oral history interviews, speeches, organizational records, business records, documents produced by government agencies, newspapers, and many more.  These sources do not generally describe or analyze other documents but are usually created by those who have witnessed what they are describing.

Watch the following video for more information on understanding primary sources.

Primary Sources Video

Courtesy of the Cooperative Library Instruction Project.

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Brenau Library Primary Sources Video