Primary sources

Primary Sources

Primary sources take the reader to major historic moments as they are happening. This reading set has newspaper articles contemporaneous to an event. Teachers might find them useful as a starting point for a class project, a launch point for a class discussion, or an enhancement for a study unit.

Reading Passages In This Set


Primary Source: Gold in California!

from "Trenton State Gazette" (New Jersey) September 16, 1848

The discovery of gold at Sutter's Mill in Californ...

514 Words, 4th-8th Grades, Main / Central Idea and Summary


Primary Source: First Modern Olympic Games

from Boston Daily Advertiser, March 24, 1896

The first modern Olympic Games was a much smaller af...

381 Words, 5th-12th Grades, Compare and Contrast and Summary


Primary Source: Comanche, the Army Horse and Hero

from "The Tribune" (San Luis Obispo, California) June 1, 1878

Comanche, a U.S. Army horse, was known as the only U...

658 Words, 4th-8th Grades, Context Clues, Figurative Language, and Summary


Primary Source: Spanish Flu Pandemic

from The Oregonian, October 12, 1918

The 1918 influenza pandemic, often called the Spanis...

789 Words, 9th-12th Grades, Context Clues, Summary, and Theme


Primary Source: The 1900 Galveston Hurricane

from "The Evening Star" (Washington, D.C.) September 10, 1900

The deadliest natural disaster in U.S. history was t...

1,051 Words, 9th-12th Grades, Main / Central Idea and Summary


Primary Source: The Titanic Is Sinking

from Daily Illinois State Journal April 15, 1912

In 1912, the supposedly unsinkable "Titanic" sank in...

851 Words, 8th-12th Grades, Context Clues, Main / Central Idea, and Summary


Primary Source: The Wright Brothers Fly

from The Philadelphia Inquirer, January 7, 1904

The world changed forever when the Wright brothers -...

764 Words, 7th-10th Grades, Context Clues and Summary


Primary Source: Votes for Women Ratified

from Kansas City Star September 1, 1920

In 1920, the 19th Amendment which granted voting rig...

715 Words, 9th-12th Grades, Context Clues and Summary