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American Civil Rights: Primary Sources: Home

• A primary source is FIRST-HAND material, such as a memoir, letter, diary, eyewitness report in the media, direct interview with involved individual, court record, photograph, video of an event, etc.  Everything else is considered a secondary source.

• A COPY of an original primary source document is still considered a primary source.  You don't have to have the original in front of you.

WEB SITES

Civil Rights Digital Library

Voices of Civil Rights (Library of Congress)

Britannica Annals of American History

American Experience: Eyes on the Prize

Martin Luther King, Jr., and the Global Freedom Struggle

Famous Trials

Ebsco Host: Miliary and Government Collection

Maine Memory Network

DATABASES

GVRL

1. Click on the GVRL (Gale Virtual Reference Library), above.

2. Scroll down to the HISTORY category and click on "American Decades PRIMARY SOURCES."

3. In right-hand box, type the topic or keyword of your search - LEAVING "All Volumes" checked - then search.

4. No results? Try broadening or narrowing your topic.  Try different keywords.

MARVEL

1. Once in MARVEL, go to TEEN RESOURCES (in left column)

2. Click on EXPLORA FOR HIGH SCHOOL

3. Do a search, then check LEFT COLUMN to drill down to JUST PRIMARY SOURCES. (If "Primary Source Documents" is not listed, it means that there are no primary sources available for your topic, at least as you entered it in the search.  Try to broaden or narrow your search, or try different keywords.)

BOOKS in the HMS LIBRARY

Reference Books (on carts)

We have a large collection of Civil Rights books (pulled and on carts in the HMS Library), but here are two reference sets that specifically help with PRIMARY SOURCES (also located on the carts):

AMERICAN CIVIL RIGHTS: Primary Sources (R 305.8 Ame)

SUPREME COURT DRAMA: Cases That Changed America (R 347.73 Bra)

Alexandria (HMS Library Online Catalog)

1. Search the HMS Online Catalog by entering your topic/keyword + "primary sources"