Using Primary Sources

Using Primary Sources is available by clicking the image above or by clicking here


What is Using Primary Sources?

Using Primary Sources is an Open Access teaching and study resource that combines rare archival source materials with high quality peer-reviewed chapters by leading academics.

Covering major themes within the medieval, early modern and modern periods, such as religion, ideas, conflict and class, this unique and easy to access e-textbook provides students with the opportunity to examine rare and original material in detail on their computer, tablet or phone as well as learn how they can integrate the source material in their own written work.

With more exciting themes in development, Using Primary Sources will continue to grow, providing students and teachers in the humanities with an invaluable free resource that teaches students how to use primary source material such as letters, photographs, legal documents, pamphlets, diaries and audio recordings in their studies.

Edited by Dr Jonathan Hogg, Senior Lecturer in Twentieth Century History at the University of Liverpool, with over 30 academics contributing, this project is a collaboration between Liverpool University Press, the University of Liverpool Library and JISC, and is available for free on the award-winning platform, BiblioBoard.

What do students think?

"I’d never previously considered something like a river as a historical artefact! But this resource has allowed me to revisit and absorb new theoretical approaches without having to wade through pages of historiographical jargon, which can be overwhelming."

"I also like that you can rate, comment, and interact with other students and the writers themselves, providing a forum for things like seminar discussions."

- Harry Roberts, University of Liverpool

Read more of his student testimonial here


How to access Using Primary Sources:

Using Primary Sources is available at

If your library or university is subscribed to BiblioBoard, then click on BiblioBoard Patron to select your library and create a profile. This will give you access to a range of additional personalisation features such as the offline bookshelf, notes, bookmarks and favourites.

If your library or university is not subscribed to BiblioBoard, or you do not wish to create a profile, click on Using Primary Sources on the top right of the screen or access the e-textbook via BiblioBoard Public (scroll down to Academic Library Exhibits or type in ‘Liverpool Using Primary Sources’ in the search bar).

Using Primary Sources is available on BiblioBoard, which can be accessed via a computer, iPhone®, iPad® (iOS versions 8+), Kindle Fire HD®, Nexus tablets® and Android tablets and phones, including Nexus® and Galaxy® devices using web browsers Google Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Internet Explorer (11+). The preferred browser is Google Chrome.

Follow Using Primary Sources on Twitter @LivUniSources to find out when new themes are added to the e-textbook and if you have any questions about Using Primary Sources, then please contact Alison Welsby (awelsby[at]

To give feedback, make suggestions for new themes or report a problem, please email


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