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LGBTQ Studies

Resources for those interested in LGBTQ Studies

Primary Source Examples 

Some examples of primary sources are, “maps, pamphlets, posters, advertisements, newspaper articles, personal letters, diaries, prescriptions, wills, school records, guest registers, memberships, financial records, census records, oral histories, [or] speeches.” 

Other examples for students can come from personal items that they may not initially think of such as, “baby books, birth announcements, birthday cards, bus passes, concert tickets, doodles in notebooks, e-mail messages, films, graffiti, homework assignments, invitations, lunch tickets, notes passed in class, old cookbooks, paintings, phone messages, photographs, postage stamps, postcards, school programs, songs, souvenirs, trading cards, [or] wrapping paper” 

Johnson, Mary. (2003). Primary Sources in the Library: A collaboration guide for library media specialists. Linwood Publishing, Inc. Worthington, Ohio.

That's right, scholars, the Presidential Tweets are primary source materials!twitter logo

What is a Primary Source?

The "Library of Congress, repository of more primary source collections and more primary source expertise than any other institution in the world… [says]:

Primary sources are original items or records that have survived from the past, such as clothing, letters, photographs, and manuscripts. They were part of a direct personal experience of a time or event.

Gay Activism Takes GUTS

Boyd, Ron. [Clipping: Gay activism takes GUTS], clipping, May 8, 1988

Other cultural institutions may offer variations on the Library of Congress definition, but all of them list some combination of the following:

  • A record created at the time a historical event occurred.
  • An event described or recorded by someone who either participated in or witnessed it.
  • Information derived from a direct participant.
  • An object created as part of daily life.
  • An artifact or record of its time."

Johnson, Mary. (2009). Primary Source Teaching the Web 2.0 Way. Linwood Publishing, Inc. Worthington, Ohio.

If you need help finding primary sources, please contact the LGBTQ Studies Librarian, Julie Leuzinger.

Primary Source Discovery

Primary Source Discovery on the Web

Additional Links