Finding Primary Sources
Archives, libraries, and other repositories around the world have posted online collections of primary materials. Many of these websites also include lesson plans and worksheets to help students learn how to analyze and interpret the sources.
- Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library and Museum
- American Journeys—Wisconsin Historical Society
- American Memory—Library of Congress
- Archival Research Catalog—National Archives and Records Administration
- Archives Center—National Museum of American History
- Archives of American Art—Smithsonian Institution
- Archives of American Gardens—Smithsonian Institution
- Chronicling America—Library of Congress
- Digital Public Library of America - DPLA
- Exploring Florida—University of South Florida
- Florida Digital Newspaper Library—University of Florida
- Florida Folklife from WPA Collections, 1937–1942—Library of Congress
- Florida Electronic Library—State Library of Florida
- Florida Historical Society
- Florida Memory Program—Florida History Day Resources
- Florida Memory Program—State Archives of Florida
- Florida-Puerto Rico Digital Newspaper Project—University of Florida
- Freedom's Journal—Wisconsin Historical Society
- Freer/Sackler Gallery of Art Archives—Smithsonian Institution
- Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History
- Harry S. Truman Presidential Library
- Index of Native American History Sources on the Internet — Karen Strom
- Lyndon B. Johnson Presidential Library
- John F. Kennedy Presidential Library
- Library of Congress—Manuscript Reading Room
- Morehouse Martin Luther King Collection—Atlanta University Center
- National Air and Space Museum Archives—Smithsonian Institution
- National Anthropological Archives—Smithsonian Institution
- National Archives and Records Administration
- National Museum of African Art Archives—Smithsonian Institution
- National Museum of the American Indian—Smithsonian Institution
- National Register Research—National Register of Historic Places
- National Security Archive—George Washington University
- Newspapers (1700s–2000s)—Newspapers.com
- Our Documents—National Archives and Records Administration
- Resources in Black Studies—University of California Santa Barbara Libraries
- Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum
- Schlesinger Library/Radcliffe Insitutute for Advanced Study—Harvard University
- Smithsonian Institution Archives
- Southern Historical Collection—University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill
- Women's History Resources — University of Wisconsin Libraries
Lesson Plans and Activity Ideas
Numerous web sites present lesson plans and classroom ideas that use primary sources as a central element of the activity.
American Memory Learning Page—Library of Congress
This website provides lesson plans, primary source sets, activities, and themes resources.
EDSITEment—National Endowment for the Humanities
Drawing on humanities resources from some of the world's great museums, libraries, cultural institutions, and universities, EDSITEment offers lesson plans relating to art and culture, literature and language arts, foreign language, and history and social studies.
School Programs for Students and Teachers—Maryland Historical Society
A set of nine worksheets teach students how to distinguish between primary and secondary sources, interpret different types of sources (broadsides/ads, documents, maps, pictures, objects, and oral histories), and turn an idea into a research project.
Smithsonian Education—Smithsonian Institution
Primary source-based lesson plans on a variety of topics, as well as information about publications, field trips, and professional development opportunities, are presented on the Web site of the nation's premier museum complex.
The Digital Classroom—National Archives and Records Administration
More than sixty lesson plans and activity ideas explore topics in American history, organized by eras. Reproducible copies of primary documents from the National Archives holdings and analysis worksheets for seven primary source types are provided.