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Government Document Primary Sources : Home

Guide to Primary Sources in Government Documents

What is a Primary Resource?

primary source is a document or physical object which was written or created during the time under study. These sources were present during an experience or time period and offer an inside view of a particular event.

Examples of Government Documents Primary Resources include:

  • Congressional hearings
  • Government reports
  • Government documents 

Best Database for Government Document Primary Sources

Congressional Publications

Full text of the American State Papers, Serial Set (House and Senate Reports and Documents), Congressional Record and older congressional digests, legislative information (hearings, bills, and laws), Congressional Research Service reports and Executive Documents, 1789-1931.

Other Databases for Government Document Primary Sources

CQ Historic Document Series

Full text of primary sources covering significant events of each year, 1972-present.


Declassified Documents Reference System (DDRS)

Full text of previously classified U.S. government documents; ca. 1905-present.


Foreign Broadcast Information Service (FBIS) Daily Reports (1941-1996)

Full text of U.S. government translations of foreign broadcasts, publications, and government statements.

Subject Guide

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Jeffrey Wilhite
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