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History: Primary Sources

Subject Research Guide
Subjects: History
Tags: history

Understanding Primary and Secondary Sources

Understanding Primary and Secondary Sources video courtesy of EasyBib.

Online Primary Resources

Finding Primary Sources at Iona

You can search for primary sources at Iona by searching WorldCat.

Add words to your search such as sources, correspondence, letters, personal narratives, or diaries to retrieve publications which contain primary sources. For example:

  • New York history sources
  • Abraham Lincoln correspondence
  • French revolution letters
  • World War II personal narratives
  • slave diaries


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Library of American Civilization

The Library of American Civilization (LAC) is a collection of 4,500 titles covering all aspects of America from the 1400s to early 1900s. All titles in this collection can be found in WorldCat. They are identified by call numbers which begin with LAC. If you find a publication in our catalog whose call number begins with LAC, you should do the following:

  1. Look to see if the record in the catalog has a link for electronic text. If so, simply click on that link to read the full text of the publication.
  2. If there is no link to electronic full-text, you may need to read the publication on microfiche. If this is the case, copy down the complete LAC number and bring it to the Ryan Library Help Desk. Library staff will retrieve the microfiche and show you how to use a microfiche reader/printer.