It looks like you're using Internet Explorer 11 or older. This website works best with modern browsers such as the latest versions of Chrome, Firefox, Safari, and Edge. If you continue with this browser, you may see unexpected results.
American Studies - American Decades: Primary Source Collections
Through AM Explorer, you can now search millions of pages of primary sources spanning the 15th – 21st centuries. This is the 2018 digital archive.
Award-winning digital resources spanning the social sciences and humanities, developed in collaboration with leading libraries and archives
Discover millions of pages of unique primary source content which empower students and researchers to develop critical thinking
Powerful digital collections that transform teaching and research on important themes such as: Borders and Migrations, Gender and Sexuality, Global History, and War and Conflict
Single point of access through AM Explorer with built-in federated search functionality across all collections
Range of additional features to enhance student engagement including Handwritten Text Recognition, Data Visualisation, Video and Oral Histories
General Websites with Primary Sources
Many Web sites contain excellent primary resources. The scope of coverage varies for time period. To find primary sources on the web, you need to use the selected list below, or use a search engine and utilize similar search terms you use searching the library catalog for library materials.
Examples of search terms: New Deal primary sources Scopes trial transcript
Finding Primary Sources with Summon
One good way to find primary sources is to use Summon.
Primary Sources can be found in different Content Types
Many can be found under Archival Material, Web Resources, Images, Newspaper Article, Magazine Article and Book/ebook. Choose one (or more) of these and then narrow the search down to the decade (or year) you want. Hint: try doing each Content Type separately. Then run the search.
The Internet Archive, a 501(c)(3) non-profit, is building a digital library of Internet sites and other cultural artifacts in digital form. Includes a great deal of primary source information - but YOU must make the decision if it is or not. Includes the Prelinger Archives, Television Archives and much more.
This database provides access to digital collections of primary sources (photos, letters, diaries, artifacts, etc.) that document the history of women in the United States. These diverse collections range from Ancestral Pueblo pottery to interviews with women engineers from the 1970s.
The Smithsonian Online Virtual Archives (SOVA) provides integrated access to descriptions and detailed inventories of thousands of primary resource collections maintained by archival units across the Smithsonian.
The Open Collections provide online access to historical resources from Harvard's renowned libraries, archives, and museums. Three open collections have been launched since 2004: Women Working, 1800-1930, Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930, and Contagion: Historical Views of Diseases and Epidemics.
A highly regarded gateway to web resources as well as a repository of unique teaching materials, first-person primary documents, and guides to analyzing historical evidence for students and teachers of American history.
Calisphere is the University of California's free public gateway to a world of primary sources. More than 200,000 digitized items — including photographs, documents, newspaper pages, political cartoons, works of art, diaries, transcribed oral histories, advertising, and other unique cultural artifacts — reveal the diverse history and culture of California and its role in national and world history.