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History Research Guide

Find primary sources, books, scholarly articles and other secondary sources in the field of History.

Primary Sources

Primary Sources are immediate, first-hand accounts from people who were present or had a direct connection with an event or era. This guide provides entry points into collections or databases of primary sources.

Primary sources can include:

  • Texts of laws and other original government or legal documents
  • Newspaper articles from the time
  • Speeches, diaries, letters and interviews - what people involved said or wrote.
  • Original research.
  • Datasets, survey data, such as census or economic statistics.
  • Photographs, video, or audio that capture an event.

Primary Source Databases at MSU

These are subscription databases of full-text primary sources provided by the MSU Library. Most require an MSU NetID login for use. 

Historic Newspapers

Most of these full-text newspaper databases are made available through MSU Library subscription and require an MSU NetID login for use. Some, such as Chronicling America, are free and open to the public.

Selected Primary Source Collections Online

Archive Aggregators