Skip to main content

History Research Seminar

Guide to library resources

Finding Primary Source Books

To find books that contain significant amounts of primary source material construct a search adding one of the following terms to your basic subject: 

sources | letters | correspondence | diary | documents | interview | photographs | manuscript | speeches

Google Books & Hathi Trust

Selected digital archives

As more and more libraries, museums, government bodies, and organizations digitize archival material there is a decent chance you can readily find relevant primary sources online. When searching for archives online, combine keywords related to your topic with terms such as digital archive, digital collection, digital repository, OR online archive, etc. OR virtual collection, etc. Here are a few major sites to get you started:

Special Collections

Special Collections holds the library’s rare books and archival collections, including a sizeable Texana collection, books related to the history of Texas. Use the search box on the Special Collections site to find materials.

Collections in Central Texas

There are several archives in the immediate area that provide researchers access to rich collections of material. Prominent among these are:

Austin History Center

Benson Latin American Collection

Briscoe Center for American History

Lyndon Baines Johnson Library and Museum

Texas State Library and Archives Commission

Print sources in SLC

Gallup Poll 303.38 G138 (Main and Research Commons Reference collection)

Kaiser Index to Black Resources, 1948-1986 (Research Commons Reference collection)

New York Times Index, 1851 - 2008 (Periodicals area), Online

Poole's Index to Periodical Literature, 1802-1906 (Research Commons Reference collection)

Readers' Guide to Periodical Literature, 1905 - 2008 (Research Commons Reference collection)