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United States History: Primary Sources

Last Updated: Jun 2, 2022 12:18 PM

What is a primary source?

In the study of history, primary sources are documents, photographs, recordings, and artifacts created by contemporary historical actors or witnesses to historical events. Primary sources necessarily form the foundation of historical research. In the resources below you can find rich and multidimensional collections of primary sources from every era and reflecting every facet of United States history.

Painting of Yellowstone National Park

Detailed pictorial map of Yellowstone National Park, 1904. David Rumsey Map Collection (source).

Primary Sources: Focus on U.S. History



Profile Photo
Michael Kicey
424 Lockwood

Primary Sources: Focus on America and Europe


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