Primary Source Paper



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Find a primary source in the time frame of this class (Discovery to the Civil War)
A primary source is a document, speech, or other sort of evidence written, created or otherwise produced during the time under study. Primary sources offer an inside view of a particular event. Examples include:

· Original Documents

· Autobiographies, diaries, e-mail, interviews, letters, minutes, news film footage, official records, photographs, raw research data, speeches.

· Creative Works

· Art, drama, films, music, novels, poetry.

· Relics or Artifacts

· Buildings, clothing, DNA, furniture, jewelry, pottery

Utilize our textbook and at least two other sources to put the primary source that you have chosen into proper historical context.
Your sources must be properly cited using MLA style.
Internet sites are acceptable, provided they are reliable.
In essay form your paper will answer the following questions:


What type of primary source is it?
When was it created?
Who created it? Explain who the person was/is.
Describe the primary source. Does it contain any unusual markings, dates, extra notes, etc.? Identify these. OR—if you did NOT find the original document, explain WHERE the original can be found. Also explain how you found out where the original is. Be specific. Cite sources.
Place your document into historical context. Why was it created? Explain what was happening in the US and the world to influence this document. Be specific—cite examples/outside sources.
How does this source relate to life in America during this era?
How does it relate to today?


Include a Works Cited page.
Attach a copy of your primary source.
The assignment must be neatly typed and follow MLA style.
Use a font size no larger than 12, Times New Roman
Length should be 2 – 3 pages/double-spaced, not counting Works Cited or Cover Sheet

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