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Research Guides

PIT CHLT 72 - Central Americans in the US - Prof. Portillo - FA 17

Searching for Primary Sources

You can find many primary sources using Google. Remember that you will want to evaluate the sources to make sure they are acceptable for your research.

Try adding one of the following primary source keywords to searches. Hint: do multiple searches with different primary source keywords.

  • sources
  • "personal narratives"
  • diaries
  • interviews
  • oral history
  • testimony
  • digital library
  • government documents
  • etc.

Finding Primary Sources

Primary sources such as government documents, laws, images, interviews, news accounts, autobiographies, literature and many others can greatly enhance your research. Here are some suggestions for locating primary sources related to the topic of this course.

Honnold Special Collections : Depending on your topic, there may be materials in Special Collections that might be of use to your research. For example, the matrimonial investigation records from Mission San Gabriel of the period 1788–1861.

Autobiographies : Here are some subject heading examples to use in Library Search

Immigrants United States Biography

Indians of Central America Guatemala Biography

Images and art

Search Librarys Search for art or photography sources. For example, Indian art Central America

Travel accounts

Central America -- Description and travel


Digital archives and exhibits created by libraries, museums and other cultural institutions:

Finding Government and Legal Information

Search for Newspapers and Magazine Articles

The following resources are recommended for finding newspaper articles. In some cases, there is a direct link in the database to the full text of the article. If not, use the  button or search Library Search for the title of the newspaper to determine if the library has access to the newspaper that you need.