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Archives 101: Find Primary Sources in Special Collections & Archives: Find Primary Sources

How to find primary sources.

Library catalogue

Search for books or articles

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Find published primary sources

Once you have determined key events, dates, and people, you can try searching the library catalogue, for primary resources:

  • Consult the library catalogue to search for published primary sources at the University of Waterloo, the University of Guelph, and Wilfrid Laurier University.
  • Try to identify names of significant people or organizations related to your topic.
  • Use these names as your search terms when you perform a search by author.

Find unpublished primary sources at Waterloo

Archives housed in the Doris Lewis Rare Book Room can be browsed by theme, by academic department, or alphabetically.

Most of the archives housed in the Doris Lewis Rare Book Room have finding aids, which list in detail the documents that make up each collection. All of these are listed in the binders labelled Archive Finding Aids; many of them are also online.

The University of Waterloo Archives houses official records of the University of Waterloo, including correspondence, reports, minutes, publications, architectural and building plans, photographs, ephemera, and memorabilia.

Find unpublished primary sources located elsewhere

Looking for primary sources located elsewhere? Try the following:

We can help!

Special Collections Reference Group Email Alias's picture
Special Collections Reference Group Email Alias
Doris Lewis Rare Book Room
Dana Porter Library, first floor
519-888-4567 ext. 32619