Skip to main content

Appalachian Studies (Hamilton): Primary Sources

Definition of Primary Source

Primary Sources are the raw data directly associated with their producer or user and the time period in which they were created. Examples include:

  • Public Records -- government documents, , court records, wills, tax records
  • Offfical Records -- for the operation of governments, such as laws and legislation
  • Personal Documents -- diaries, letters, email, correspondence, oral histories, household managment records
  • Artifacts and Relics --the material culture of life; furniture, tools, machines, clothing
  • Organizational Records -- all organizations keep some form of financial documents and minutes, among other records; businesses, charities, civic clubs
  • Images -- photographs, posters, paintings, engravings, icons,
  • Architecture, City Plans, and Maps -- how neighborhoods change, cities develop, landscape changes
  • Media -- television news, newspapers, broadsides
  • Literary Texts -- text of a novel, essay, poem, play, short story, religious work

Digital Collections of Primary Sources