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Research: Library Collections

This guide is designed to help you get started using the UNLV Libraries.

Research by Subject

Primary Sources

For links to primary sources available in the UNLV Libraries (these include collections online, in print and on microfilm) as well as to primary source collections freely available on the web see:

  • Government Documents
    • Governments produce a wide array of documents ranging from Congressional or Parliamentary debates and reports, census data, agency or departmental papers to brochures, maps and posters. As primary sources these official governmental publications provide insight into all aspects of history from social issues to politics, from cultural mores to scientific endeavor
  • Images
  • Letters & Diaries
    • Letters and diaries provide a personal angle on history and often gives voice to the common person such as the WWI soldier in the trenches or the sweetheart on the homefront. However keep in mind that, like all sources, letters and diaries follow the convention of their times and must be considered in light of the writer's motivations and biases. There are a number of published collections of letters especially those written by well-known historical figures (Walt Whitman or Winston Churchill). Unpublished diaries and letters are found in manuscript repositories such as the Special Collections here at UNLV.
      Help: Making Sense of Letters & Diaries
  • Newspaper & Magazine Articles
  • Maps
  • Oral Histories
    • UNLV Oral History Research Center
    • Oral histories provide a personal angle on history and often gives voice to the common person. However it important to keep in mind that oral histories are subjective and individualistic and that memory is fallible.
  • Archival Materials @ UNLV

Keep in mind that non-UNLV students must be in the UNLV Libraries to use any of the links that include a lock icon.


American Memory from the Library of Congress provides a wide range of primary source materials in all the categories above.

Research by Course

Off-Campus Access

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