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How to Use Primary Sources

We've designed this site around the process of using primary sources for delving into the past. You'll find lots of examples, guidance, and rare primary sources.
  • Our centerpiece is Martha Ballard's diary, all 27 years of it, handwritten and transcribed. Explore randomly to your heart's content or use the search engine to locate specific entries.
  • Our Archive of Primary Sources about early America and Martha Ballard is a unique collection you can't find in any one physical place.
  • The History Toolkit is full of research tips and forms that will show you what you need to know to use specific kinds of documents and sources.


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