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HIST 480 Historical Methods and Historiography Research Guide

Find Resources in Archives and Special Collections

The research materials in Archives and Special Collections are searchable through online finding aids, guides held in the department, and the USD catalog.  


A Finding Aid is often the tool that both Archives staff and users rely upon to find letters, photographs, reports, diaries and other archival records with the Richardson and USD Archives collections. 

Search the Catalog for books, pamphlets and other materials in the Chilson Collection.  Limit Collection to Special Collections-Chilson

Published Primary Sources

Editions of correspondence, memoirs, diaries, and other documents can be found in the library or in WorldCat, and such editions capture the thoughts of both famous and not-so-famous individuals.

Search the catalogs using terms like sources, narratives, correspondence, letters, diaries, speeched, interviews, archives to locate published primary source materials.

From Letters to Newspapers: Find these and more at USD

Archives and Special Collections is located on the third floor of University librararies and open Monday-Friday 8-5.  Please call, email or stop by if you have questions about our collections.  Appointments are encouraged but not necessary.

Archives and Special Collections contains historic materials with strengths in the study of the Dakotas relating to:

  • Native American history and culture
  • South Dakota politics
  • Settlement of the Northern Plains
  • History of USD.  

Searching for archival materials

What are primary sources?

Primary soures are materials that contain firsthand accounts of events and that were created contemporaneously or first hand accounts later recalled by witnesses.

Examples include:

  • Correspondence
  • Manuscripts
  • Diaries or Journals
  • Speeches
  • Newspapers
  • Oral Histories or interviews
  • Publications
  • Political documents
  • Audio and video recordings
  • Photographs
  • Magazine articles (from the time period)
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