Gender, Women, and Sexuality Studies

A guide for students doing GWSS research

Library Research Guide

Finding Primary Sources

What is a primary source? According to librarian Tim Watts, a primary source is anything that has been created by a person who witnessed or experienced an event as a contemporary. Examples of primary sources would include letters, diaries, autobiographies, and contemporary documents such as newspaper articles, government documents, and oral histories. A researcher's report of their own original research can also be considered a primary source. 

We have several databases that contain primary sources. Be aware that some of these databases have both primary and secondary source material. You will need to evaluate the sources that you find to ensure they fit the parameters of your assignment.

These lists of select databases may help you complete assignments requiring primary sources.

Select Databases for Primary Sources