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Primary Sources in Library Databases
The Library has many many full-text databases of electronic primary sources. Here are some collections to explore.
Contains manuscripts, books, maps, photos, and other materials focusing on the American West.
Consists of the archive of the British Pathe news corporation from 1896 to 1970. The archive covers history, social history, sports, news, and entertainment. Closed captions are not available.
China: Trade, Politics and Culture 1793-1980
Presents periodicals, diaries, photographs, and other materials relating to British and American diplomats, missionaries, business people, and tourists in China.
Civil Rights in America: From Reconstruction to the Great Society
Provides an archive of official publications and primary source material related to civil rights in the United States.
Confidential Print: Middle East
Provides the full text of historical reports, dispatches, correspondence, and other documents issued by the British Foreign and Colonial Offices on the Middle East and northeast Africa from circa 1820 to 1970.
Early American Newspapers I, II, and III
Covers early American newspapers, a major primary source for American history. Provides unprecedented access to the nation's newspapers from 1690 to 1876. Series I covers 1690-1876, while series II and III cover 1821-1876.
Early English Books Online (EEBO)
Offers full text digital facsimiles of titles from the earliest printed works in the English language.
Find primary source documents on colonial history, politics, and culture from 1492 to 2007, primarily about the British Empire, especially Africa, the Americas, Australia, Oceania, and South Asia.
Making of the Modern World
Archives books or monographs on economics and business published from 1450 through 1850. Includes materials on commerce, finance, social conditions, politics, trade, and transport.
Medieval Travel Writing
Features digitized medieval manuscripts of important European travel writing from the later Medieval period, focusing on travels from Europe to the Holy Land, India, and China. Includes travel maps.
New York Times Historical File (1851-2013)
Archives the New York Times from 1851 to 2013 with full page images and articles.
Slavery, Abolition and Social Justice
Archives primary source documents for the study of slavery and abolition with materials from Africa, the Caribbean, the U.S., Latin America, and Europe from 1490 to 2007.
Times of London Digital Archive
Archives the full text of The Times of London from 1785 to 1985.
Women and Social Movements in the United States, 1600-2000, Scholar's Edition
Maintains primary source documents and historical interpretations focusing on women in American social movements.
Primary Sources on the Web
Many libraries, museums, and archives have digitized their historic documents and put them online in digital libraries. Here are some large collections (and links to other large collections) you may want to explore.
Scanned documents and photos from cultural institutions worldwide.
National Union Catalog of Manuscript Collections
The mission of the NUCMC program is to provide and promote bibliographic access to the nation's documentary heritage.
Slavery in America and the World: History, Culture & Law
This collection brings together all known legal materials on slavery in the United States and the English-speaking world and includes pamphlets, books, legal statutes, and articles on slavery.
Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database
Provides information on slaving voyages from Europe and Africa to North America, the Caribbean, and Brazil. The database offers researchers, students, and the general public a chance to rediscover the reality of one of the largest forced movements of peoples in world history.
World Digital Library
Significant primary materials from countries and cultures around the world. Browse by time, place, topic, type of item, and more.