Primary Sources: First hand evidence left behind by participants or observers at the time of events.
Original Documentation: Autobiographies, memoirs, diaries, interviews, letters or email, video or film footage, photographs, speeches, newspapers, government documents, official records, and more.
Creative Works: Art, drama, films, music, novels, and poetry.
Relics or Artifacts: Buildings, clothing, furniture, jewelry, and pottery.
Use the ELAC Library Databases to find primary sources by:
Women Walking Road into Chavez Ravine
Image Source: Online Archive of California
Primary Source Research on the Web
If your research topic is contemporary, you can also want to search for primary sources on news and media websites, blogs, Twitter, Facebook, company sites, and other social media sites.
Secondary Sources: Interpret historical events by examining primary sources and other secondary sources.
Writings Based on Original Accounts or Artifacts
Books, journal articles, and criticism of art, music, artifacts, etc. written using original documentation or firsthand accounts.
Written After Original Event
Secondary sources will be written and published after the original event took place.
Secondary sources a great place to start when learning about your topic. These sources provide background and historical information.
Note: Books can take many years to write and it's possible there won't be a book written on your specific topic and you may instead need to search for your general topic.
Articles: Explore the ELAC Library Databases for magazine, newspaper, and scholarly journal articles.