Skip to Main Content

Learning Community K: Home

Spring 2022

Background information

Use for an overview of your topic or to identify possible primary sources. Can be used for a "credible source" for the source reviews.

Finding articles

Tips for Finding Primary Sources

1. Search the Internet using Google. Do a keyword search for your topic and add the words "primary sources". 

  • Important tip: avoid .com websites with site:
  • Example: finds only websites with a .org address. 
  • .org, .edu, and .gov addresses are all good ones to try for primary sources.

2. Use the Library's Quick Search. Do a keyword search for your topic and add the words "primary sources" or just "sources". Or add the words for a specific type of source.

  • letters, correspondence
  • memoir, diary, personal narrative
  • photographs
  • maps
  • speeches, oratory

2. Use the secondary sources you've already found, like books or journal articles, and look in the notes or bibliography to see what primary sources that author used. Then search for those sources online or in the library using the strategies above.

Finding Primary Sources

Below, you'll find a few very specific links to incredible primary sources!! For those of you who are a bit more exploratory, there are even more resources categorized by resource type (government documents, website, etc.).

Ask Us!

  • Call: 361-825-2340
  • Text: 361-726-4986
  • Email us
  • Visit the Circulation Desk in Bell Library

Tutorials and Other Tools

Quick Search

You can use Quick Search to identify books, articles from periodicals, government documents, primary source collections, and more.

Using Bell Library's Quick Search

The video below shows you how to conduct a quick search from Bell Library's homepage and how to access the resources you find there.

The sample search primarily focuses on journal articles, but you can similarly limit your search to books or eBooks. Once receiving your results, you can distinguish eBook items from regular print items by noting the "online" tag for eBook titles. For titles we carry in print, you will need to make note of the location of the book and the call number.