As a college librarian, I often hear stressed-out students searching for primary sources say, "I'll take anything." Don't settle for just anything. There is a treasury of primary source material available electronically. Peruse my selection of 200-plus primary source sites by conducting a keyword search, exploring the tag cloud at left, or browsing by historical era. You can also visit my Delicious and Diigo sites to review my bookmarks. Here's hoping you find what you're looking for.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Someone checked out the book you need? Don't stress.

Spring break is over and the semester’s end nears; research paper anxiety season is approaching. This is about the time freshmen history students show up at the reference desk looking for a copy of Salem-Village Witchcraft: a Documentary Record of Local Conflict in Colonial New England. I usually have to tell them they are out of luck. That item, along with other primary source materials in our collection dealing with the witchcraft trials in Salem, is particularly popular. No need to stress. An amazing collection of primary source documents is available at the University of Virginia’s Salem Witch Trials Documentary Archive and Transcription Project. There, you’ll find transcriptions of court records, record books from the Salem Village church and digitized historic maps of Massachusetts Bay Colony and Salem Village. So don’t worry if someone beat you to the stacks.
Above is a an image of the Trial of George Jacobs of Salem for Witchcraft, a painting by Thompkins Harrison Matteson. That image comes from the Library of Congress.

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