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HIST 2010 - American History 1

Course Textbook

What are Primary & Secondary Sources?

You will read primary and secondary source materials about historical events and people in each of your history courses.

Primary sources are first-hand evidence of an historically important person or event. They are produced by that person or as a result of that event. Examples of primary sources include

  • autobiographies,
  • letters,
  • diaries or journals,
  • photographs, and
  • social media posts.

Secondary sources are documents used to analyze, interpret, or study an historically important person or event. Examples of secondary sources include

  • peer reviewed articles,
  • scholarly books,
  • government reports, and
  • documentary films.

Watch the video below to gain a better understanding of primary and secondary sources.

History E-books

The SOWELA library has a large collection of history e-books available through our catalog and various databases. The list below has some suggestions. Contact a librarian if you don't find what you're looking for.