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Finding Primary Sources: Databases

A guide to finding primary source accounts of United States history at the Valley Cottage Library.

About Databases

What is a database?

A database is a collection of information organized to help you do your research easily.

What kind of information will I find in a database?

This library's databases contain digital versions of magazine, newspaper, and journal articles.  They also contain digital versions of many encyclopedias and reference books.  The databases we featured on this page contain digital versions of many primary source documents from American history.

How can I access a database?

Most of our databases are available 24/7 anywhere you can access the internet.  You'll click on the link to the database then enter your library card number. Click here for a complete list of databases.

My teacher says I can only use print sources.  Does that include articles I find in a database?

You should double check with your teacher about the requirements for your assignment.  However, every article you find in a database will include information about the magazine, newspaper, journal, or book in which it originally appeared.  Although you are searching using an online tool, the information you find is mostly from print sources originally.

Can I save the articles I find in a database?

Yes, you can save, email, or print articles from the databases.

Databases with Primary Sources

Historical Newspapers