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Primary Sources: Home


A primary source is an artifact, document, or object that is an account or record of an event/phenomena from the time in which the event occurred. Examples include: diaries, letters, speeches, music, film clips, artwork, etc.

Below are select primary source search engines, subscription databases, and freely available e-collections.

Murphy Library's Special Collections and Area Research Center also offers on site access to primary sources relating to Wisconsin, La Crosse, and UWL history.

Letters & Diaries

Online Collections of Primary Sources

Resources that include multiple types of primary sources (e.g. letters, manuscripts, images, movies, documents, etc.)

Help is Available - Ask a Librarian

Reference Desk

Librarians can help you learn to make the most of the information resources, tools, and services of Murphy Library and beyond!

Weekdays & Sunday afternoons (fall/spring):

  • Visit us at the reference desk (1st floor)
  • Call us at 608.785.8508
  • Web Chat with us

Any time (year-round):

Local history and/or archives research? Special Collections / Area Research Center specialists are available!

Catalogs / Search Engines to Find Primary Sources


Oral Histories