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HST 110/111: World Civilizations I & II

What are Primary Sources?

Primary Sources:

  • Are materials that contain direct evidence, first-hand testimony, or an eyewitness account concerning a topic or event under investigation
  • Are materials or documents that were created during the time of the event in which you are interested
  • Provide the raw data for your research


Examples of Primary Sources

  • Diaries, letters, correspondence, interviews
  • newspaper articles directly reporting on the event,
  • Government documents, maps, interviews,
  • Statistics, or photographs. 


Really it is the way you interpret or use a source determines whether it is a primary source or not (most sources have the potential to be a primary source!)

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