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Module 2: How to Find Primary Sources in the UIUC Archives
Archives are places where records of all types and formats are kept and made accessible for research and other purposes. They are a good place to find primary sources, both unpublished materials and those that have been published for their parent institution's members or constituencies. Personal and institutional records of all types can be found in archives, as well as mass media, ephemera, oral histories, and even artifacts.
Often, archives are associated with particular institutions and care for those records and publications of that institution that are no longer needed on a day-to-day basis. The records they hold are used by outside researchers to learn about the institution and also by members of the institution itself to understand everything from how it made decisions in the past to how its buildings were designed.
The term archives can also refer to the records themselves.
The University of Illinois Archives has everything from the financial records of the institution to student publications like this yearbook, published by the Black Student Association (BSA) in 1972. The Illio had negotiated with the BSA to set aside 24 pages to represent black student life and culture in its 1971-72 volume, but the BSA felt it needed more space for ”a truly representative outlook on our lifestyle at the University” (p. 2).
Political and Social Action
Black Student Association Publications, 1967- Record Series 41/66/826