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Primary Sources

Primary sources are contemporary accounts of an event, written by someone who experienced or witnessed the event in question. These original documents (i.e., they are not about another document or account) are often diaries, letters, memoirs, journals, speeches, manuscripts, interviews and other such unpublished works. They may also include published pieces such as newspaper or magazine articles (as long as they are written soon after the fact and not as historical accounts), photographs, audio or video recordings, research reports in the natural or social sciences, or original literary or theatrical works. -- Definition from University of California Santa Cruz, University Library "Distinguish between Primary and Secondary Sources, " Accessed November 17, 2011. http://library.ucsc.edu/help/howto/distinguish-between-primary-and-secondary-sources

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APS (American Periodical Series) Online
1740-1900; APS (American Periodical Series) Online contains over 1,100 periodicals including special interest and general magazines, literary and professional journals, children's and women's magazines, and many other historically-significant periodicals. 

African American Poetry
African American Poetry contains nearly 3,000 poems by African American poets of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries. It provides a comprehensive survey of the early history of African American poetry, from the earliest published African American poems to the works of Paul Laurence Dunbar, the first African American poet to achieve national success and recognition.

African Newspapers 1800-1922
1800-1922; more than 40 nineteenth- and twentieth-century African newspapers. Featuring titles from Ghana, Kenya, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, Nigeria, South Africa, Uganda and Zimbabwe.

African Writers Series
For over 40 years, Heinemann's African Writers Series has published the key texts of modern African literature. It has a unique importance in the history of postcolonial writing. Release Seven of this online edition includes over 230 volumes of fiction, poetry, drama and non-fictional prose, including works by Chinua Achebe, Ama Ata Aidoo, Steve Biko, Buchi Emecheta, Nadine Gordimer, Bessie Head, Doris Lessing, Nelson Mandela, Dambudzo Marechera, Christopher Okigbo, Okot p'Bitek and Tayeb Salih. 

Alternative Press Index
1969-present; international and interdisciplinary, Alternative Press Index provides access to nearly 300 alternative, radical and left periodicals, newspapers and magazines that report and analyze the practices and theories of cultural, economic, political and social change.

American Drama 1714-1915
Containing more than 1,500 dramatic works from the early eighteenth century up to the beginning of the twentieth, American Drama 1714–1915 reflects American dramatic writing in all its richness and diversity: plays in verse, farces, melodramas, minstrel shows, realist plays, frontier plays, temperance dialogues and a range of other genres are represented. 

American Poetry
Over 40,000 poems by more than 200 American poets from the Colonial Period to the early twentieth century.

American Slavery: A Composite Autobiography
2000 edition; a study of the WPA slave narratives. A massive historical collection, it includes complete records for each narrative identifying the narrator, his or her year of birth, and the county and state where the narrator was in bondage.

Black Drama
1850-present; when complete, Black Drama will contain the full text of 1,200 plays written from the mid-1800s to the present by more than 100 playwrights from North America, English-speaking Africa, the Caribbean, and other African diaspora countries. Many of the works are rare, hard-to-find, or out of print. Nearly a quarter of the collection will consist of previously unpublished plays by writers such as Langston Hughes, Ed Bullins, Willis Richardson, Femi Euba, Amiri Baraka, Randolph Edmonds, Zora Neale Hurston, and many others. 

Brown Archival & Manuscript Collections Online (BAMCO)
Provides access to primary source material through finding aids representing manuscript and archival holdings at Brown University.  Many of the collections have been digitized and include links from the finding aid to digital facsimiles of letters, photographs, or other objects.

Signature Collections arise from Brown’s special collections and present them in enhanced digital form. These collections are chosen for their comprehensiveness and uniqueness, as well as their significant public value.

Canadian Poetry
Created in partnership with the Electronic Text Centre at the University of New Brunswick Libraries, this unique collection contains the full text of more than 19,000 poems, offering a comprehensive survey of Canadian poetry from the eighteenth century to the early twentieth. 

Dictionary of Old English: Old English Corpus
The Dictionary of Old English Corpus is an online database consisting of at least one copy of every Old English text. In some cases, more than one copy is included, if it is significant because of dialect or date. As such, the DOEC represents about three million words of Old English and another two million words of Latin.

Early American Fiction 1789-1850
Facsimile page images and keyword-searchable full text for more than four hundred works of American prose fiction published before 1850, including key titles such as James Fenimore Cooper's The Last of the Mohicans, Edgar Allan Poe's Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque and Nathaniel Hawthorne's The Scarlet Letter.


Early American Fiction 1789-1875
Early American Fiction 1789–1875 offers the full text of 875 first editions of American novels and short stories by such authors as Louisa May Alcott, Herman Melville, Harriet Beecher Stowe and Mark Twain, as well as a host of minor writers of the period.


Early American Imprints, Series I. Evans (1639-1800) Digital Edition
Ongoing; based on the renowned American Bibliography by Charles Evans and enhanced by Roger Bristol'sSupplement to Evans' American Bibliography, this resource serves as the foundation for research on every aspect of 17th and 18th century American life. Upon completion, Evans Digital will consist of over 36,000 works and 2,400,000 images.


Early American Imprints, Series II (1801-1819): Shaw-Shoemaker, Digital Edition 
Ongoing, Shaw-Shoemaker covers every aspect of American life during the early decades of the United States. Early American Imprints, Series II (1801-1819) provides full-text access to the 36,000 American books, pamphlets and broadsides published in the first nineteen years of the nineteenth century. The continuation of Readex's Early American Imprints: Series I, this rich primary source database, based on the authoritative bibliography by Ralph R. Shaw and Richard H. Shoemaker and now supplemented by thousands of new items, thoroughly chronicles the people, ideas and events behind the early political, social, cultural and geographic growth of the United States.

Early American Newspapers. Series 1. 1690-1876 
1690-1876; provides access to more than 160 significant, historic newspapers listed in Clarence Brigham's authoritative bibliography, History and Bibliography of American Newspapers, 1620-1820, and in additional subsequent bibliographies.

Early English Books Online (EEBO)
From the first book published in English through the age of Spenser and Shakespeare, this collection now contains about 100,000 of over 125,000 titles listed in Pollard & Redgrave's Short-Title Catalogue (1475-1640) and Wing's Short-Title Catalogue (1641-1700) and their revised editions, as well as the Thomason Tracts (1640-1661) collection and the Early English Books Tract Supplement. Subjects include English literature, history, philosophy, linguistics, theology, music, fine arts, education, mathematics, and science. 

Early English Books Online (EEBO) Text Creation Project
Fully searchable electronic texts of 25,000 of the 100,000+ titles in Early English Books Online (EEBO) are being made available through this Text Creation Partnership. These editions are presented in a modern format that can be accessed by topic, by date, by type of material, and various other parameters for both instructional and research purposes.

Early English Prose Fiction
A collection of more than 200 works from the period 1500–1700, exploring the rich diversity of prose fiction in English in the period preceding the emergence of the realist novel as its dominant form.

Eighteenth Century Fiction
A collection of 96 complete works of English prose from the period 1700–1780 by writers from the British Isles. Key figures covered include Daniel Defoe, Henry Fielding, Eliza Haywood, Samuel Richardson, Tobias Smollett, Laurence Sterne and Jonathan Swift. In addition to a scanned version of Sterne's Tristram Shandy, the collection also contains two different editions of Richardson's Clarissa and Pamela, and of Swift's Gulliver's Travels.

ECCO
Based on the English Short Title Catalogue, Eighteenth Century Collections Online includes books, pamphlets, essays, broadsides and more. It contains works published in the UK during the 18th century plus thousands from elsewhere. ECCO is primarily in English, but does include other languages. 

Editions and Adaptations of Shakespeare
Eleven major editions from the First Folio to the Cambridge edition of 1863-66, twenty-four separate contemporary printings of individual plays, selected apocrypha and related works and more than one hundred adaptations, sequels and burlesques from the seventeenth, eighteenth and nineteenth centuries.

English Drama
A unique collection of plays in verse and prose tracing the development of drama in English from the medieval mystery cycles to the comedies of Oscar Wilde.

English Poetry
The original ground-breaking Chadwyck-Healey collection, English Poetry contains essentially the complete English poetic canon from the 8th century to the early 20th.

English Poetry, Second Edition
English Poetry, Second Edition redefines the English poetic canon for the 21st century, building on the achievement of the original English Poetry collection. The collection now offers incomparable representation both of the literary heritages of former colonial countries and of the poetic legacies of English writers who have only been brought back to scholarly attention during the last thirty years.

English Short Title Catalog
The ESTC, English Short Title Catalog, is an in-process list of books published in all languages in Great Britain, and in English elsewhere, from 1475-1800. [This resource is publicly available.]

This collection offers access to tens of thousands of high resolution images from the Folger Shakespeare Library, including books, theater memorabilia, manuscripts, art, and more. Users can show multiple images side-by-side, zoom in and out, view cataloging information when available, export thumbnails, and construct permanent URLs linking back to their favorite items or searches.

The MJP is a multi-faceted project that aims to be a major resource for the study of modernism and its rise in the English-speaking world, with periodical literature as its central concern. The historical scope of the project has a chronological range of 1890 to 1922 (though the earliest journals that currently appear on the site date from 1896 and 1904), and a geographical range that extends to wherever English language periodicals were published. With magazines at its core, the MJP also offers a range of genres that extends to the digital publication of books directly connected to modernist periodicals and other supporting materials for periodical study.

NINES
NINES (Networked Infrastructure for Nineteenth-Century Electronic Scholarship) is a scholarly organization devoted to forging links between the material archive of the nineteenth century and the digital research environment of the twenty-first. 

Nineteenth-Century Fiction
A collection of 250 British and Irish novels from the period 1782 to 1903, stretching from the golden age of Gothic fiction to the Decadent and New Woman novels of the 1890s. Major novelists of the period such as Austen, Scott, Mary Shelley, Dickens, Eliot, Hardy and the Brontës feature alongside popular romances, sensation fiction, colonial adventure novels and children's literature.

North American Women's Letters and Diaries
Colonial-1950; ongoing. When complete, the collection will include approximately 150,000 pages of published letters and diaries from individuals writing from Colonial times to 1950, plus 7,000 pages of previously unpublished materials. Includes materials from more than 1,000 sources, including journal articles, pamphlets, newsletters, monographs, and conference proceedings.

The Proceedings of the Old Bailey, 1674-1913  
A fully searchable edition of the largest body of texts detailing the lives of non-elite people ever published, containing 197,745 criminal trials held at London's central criminal court.

The gateway to information about archival collections in Rhode Island. Search the finding aids to discover what historical materials are available for research and where those collections are located. The finding aids give detailed descriptions of primary source materials located at repositories across Rhode Island.

Twentieth-Century African American Poetry
A database of modern and contemporary African American poetry, featuring almost 9,000 poems by 62 of the most important African American poets of the last century, including Langston Hughes, Jean Toomer, Imamu Amiri Baraka, Audre Lorde and Rita Dove.

Twentieth-Century American Poetry
This collection includes over 50,000 poems drawn from volumes by over 300 poets, including Adrienne Rich, Andrei Codrescu, Ezra Pound, William Carlos Williams, Denise Levertov, Wallace Stevens, Langston Hughes, Lucille Clifton, and Cathy Song.

Twentieth-Century American Poetry, Second Edition
This essential collection brings together over 100,000 of the most important and influential poems representing the full range of movements and traditions in American poetry from 1900 to the present day including Maya Angelou, John Ashbery Gwendolyn Brooks, Clark Coolidge, Rita Dove, Susan Howe, Langston Hughes, W.S. Merwin, Ezra Pound, Adrienne Rich, Wallace Stevens and William Carlos Williams.

Twentieth-Century English Poetry
A collection of more than 600 volumes of poetry by poets from 1900 to the present day, including W.B. Yeats, Rudyard Kipling, Thomas Hardy, Wilfred Owen, Thom Gunn, Fleur Adcock, Paul Muldoon, Tony Harrison, Benjamin Zephaniah and Carol Ann Duffy, and incorporating the poets in The Faber Poetry Library.

Women Writers Online
1400-1850; full text collection of writing by women in English with currently about 200 texts and growing. Includes a wide range of subjects and genres, and all texts are transcribed in full, including front and back matter.
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