HomeEnglish-Language Primary Sources

English-Language Primary Sources

This online resource is intended to facilitate Harvard students’ use of primary source materials in their course papers by easing the process of identifying relevant English-language books and publications. Students should be aware that these databases do not come close to identifying all English-language primary sources in Harvard’s libraries. 

Most sources included in the thematic collections below can be found in the holdings of Harvard libraries and HOLLIS records. The collections also contain useful materials in other North American libraries which are available, in most cases, by interlibrary loan. These appear in the form of OCLC WorldCat records. You can search items by metadata (publisher, year of publication, place of publication, series, etc.) on each item page or find more specific materials through Advanced Search. Students should be aware that some of the materials identified as “non-Harvard items” may in fact be owned by Harvard. They should double-check with HOLLIS before ordering the materials through interlibrary loan. 

In addition to physical holdings in Harvard libraries or beyond Harvard, the "Digital Resources" collection summarizes digital English-language primary source materials that can be accessed with Harvard Key or are freely available online. You can also find abundant open access English-language primary sources in the Open Access Primary Sources section of this website. You may also find our listing of English-language bibliography helpful. 

This section is a reproduction of an earlier website, English-Language Primary Sources for the Study of Soviet History, conceived and developed by Professor Terry Martin. We have been working to improve the previous database by standardizing and updating the data, attaching open access links to the items, and adding new resources to the database.