Primary sources are original records created during the time historical events occurred. Some primary sources are in the form of memoirs and oral histories created after the initial event. Primary sources may include letters, manuscripts, diaries, journals, newspapers, speeches, interviews, memoirs, government documents by agencies such as Congress, the Office of the President, or Library of Congress. Photographs, audio recordings, moving pictures or video recordings, research data, objects or artifacts are also primary sources. These sources serve as the raw material to interpret the past, and are used in conjunction with interpretation by historians to provide necessary documentation for historical research.
Tertiary and Secondary Sources are good beginnings for the purpose of background and pointing to primary source material. e.g.Zondervan Reference materials. These are only meant for background, are generally not cited as part of any kind of academic research. Wikipedia is not considered a reliable source although it could be used for some general information.
Introduction to Resources for History
Specific article databases for History
Reference resources that are relevant to the study of History
Provides full-text articles from scholarly journals in a broad spectrum of topics and disciplines. Coverage spans from the journals' inception to the most recent 3-5 years (current issues are not available).