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History: Primary Sources

Newspaper Databases

Newspaper Source Plus
Provides access to more than 860 full-text newspapers and close to 1 million television and radio news transcripts.

ProQuest U.S. Newsstream
Provides access to more than 1300 newspapers, blogs, and news websites.

Primary Sources Online

‚ÄčMany libraries, museums, and archives have some or all of their collections digitized and available online.  Using Google Advanced Search can help you locate primary source collections available online. 

  • Type in your topic in the "All these words" search box
  • Type in library, archive, and museum in the "Any of these words" search box
  • Then limit your search to a specific domain; libraries, archives, and museums typically have a .edu or .org address. Some government museums and archives use .gov.

Evaluating Websites

Remember, anyone can publish anything online!  Make sure you take a critical look at any websites you are considering using for your research!  Some things to ask yourself about the website...

  • Who or what group is the author?  What are their credentials.
    • This could be a person, company, organization, etc. Think about what makes this person or group an authority or expert on the subject.
  • Who is the intended audience? 
    • This could be the general public, other experts in the field, children, parents, etc.
  • Is the information accurate and unbiased?
    • Is it clear if the information being presented is fact or opinion?  If it's fact, are there citations or links to where the author has found supporting information?
  • Is the information current?
    • Try to find out when the website was last updated or if there is a publication date for the particular page you are viewing.

For more information on evaluating websites and other digital sources, check out this research guide from the OWL at Purdue.

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