Q. What are primary sources, and how can I find them?
Primary or first-person sources are items originating from a person who experienced an event first-hand. Examples include correspondence, photographs, maps, newspapers, legal documents, video recordings of theater performances, audio recordings, and data sets.
A key to recognizing the differences between primary and secondary sources is taking note of the presence of analysis or criticism-- the absence of these means you're likely looking at a primary source item. Primary source research means you "bring your analysis" to the item.
For more information about primary source research in the CSUDH Archives & Special Collections visit our guide to finding primary sources or contact the department: