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InfoGuides | Pepperdine Libraries

HIST 406: German History: Primary Source Databases

these will help you find resources for you assignment

What is a Primary Source

A primary source is "first-hand" information, sources as close as possible to the origin of the information or idea under study. Primary sources are contrasted with secondary sources, works that provide analysis, commentary, or criticism on the primary source. In literary studies, primary sources are often creative works, including poems, stories, novels, and so on. In historical studies, primary sources include written works, recordings, or other source of information from people who were participants or direct witnesses to the events in question. Examples of commonly used primary sources include government documents, memoirs, personal correspondence, oral histories, and contemporary newspaper accounts.

Other Primary Source Databases

Web Based Primary Sources on German History

Historical Newspapers and Magazines

Google Books

Google Book Search allows you to search the full-text of books. Many books in the public domain (not subject to copyright) will be available in the full-text. These older books will be primary sources if they were written by someone who observed or participated in a historical event.
Tips for locating primary sources with Google Books:
  • Click the link for Advanced Search and search with someone who observed or particpated in the event as an author
  • One option for locating primary sources is to set the date range to a time that is relatively close to the historical event that you are researching.