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SCIENCE, TECHNOLOGY & SOCIETY: SUBJECT GUIDE: Primary Sources

Use this guide to get started with your STS research!

Archives & Special Collections Hours

During the semester, drop in on the Archives & Special Collections (Collins Library, 2nd floor):

Tuesdays - Thursdays 11:00 AM to 3:00 PM

Other times are available by appointment, please contact archives@pugetsound.edu.

A small selection of digitized material from the Archives & Special Collections is available online 24/7.

Puget Sound Archives & Special Collections, Science, Technology, and Society

The Archives & Special Collections collects, preserves, and makes available primary source material documenting life at the University as well as collections representing regional, national and international issues.

A small selection of material is listed below, for additional sources, please contact archives@pugetsound.edu.

A Craftsman 6.5 x 10" tabletop platen press and movable type are used to produce unique items for the Collins Press.

Hogg, Jabez, The microscope : its history, construction and application, being a familiar introduction to the use of the instrument and the study of microscopical science, 1867.

Nollet, abbé (Jean Antoine), L'art des expériences, ou, Avis aux amateurs de la physique, 1770.

The Benjamin A. Gould Collection, 1874-1918, contains Gould's correspondence with M. Thome, reports, meteorological and astronomical information, and lunar photographs taken in 1918.  Gould (1824-1896) was the founder and first editor of the Astronomical Journal and was involved in the establishment and operation of the National Observatory at CoĢrdoba, Argentina.

The Archives & Special Collections holds a wide variety of primary source material, many of these can be used to trace technological developments on campus.  A small portion of photographshistorical documents, and digitized material are available online.  You can also browse archival and manuscript collections as well as rare books on Primo (limit the location to Archives & Special Collections on the left).

What's a primary source?

Primary sources are original, uninterpreted information.  Scholars analyze primary sources in order to answer research questions. Examples of primary sources vary by discipline.

Examples in the humanities:

  • a novel
  • a painting
  • a theatre performance

Examples in the social sciences:

  • a political, social, or economic theory
  • a dataset
  • the results of an experiment published in a peer-reviewed journal

Example in the sciences:

  • the results of an experiment published in a peer-reviewed journal