Primary Sources in Print

Lots of historical primary sources are published as books. Browse footnotes and bibliographies of secondary source books, encyclopedias, and articles for the titles of published primary sources. 

Two methods for finding primary sources published in books

  1. Search the Library Catalog using the advanced search with terms related to your topic and subject terms such as:

    • sources [in library catalogs this term describes published primary sources or books about primary and secondary sources]

    • diaries

    • personal narratives

    • interviews

    • letters

  2. Search on a topic in the catalog then limit by the publication year of the pertinent historical period using the option to the left of the search results:

Catalog Publication Year Search facet showing search resulted limited between 1600 and 2016

NOTE: The date of publication of a book (which appears at the end of the title in Cornell's Library Catalog) is not always an indication of whether something is a primary source. Sources are often published many times. A modern, critical edition of a published primary source will have a recent date of publication. The dates associated with the author(s) of the book can be a better indicator. 

Catalog results with the dates highlighted.

If you're still not sure, don't hesitate to Ask a Librarian