Browse Primary Sources
Locate primary sources, including images, objects, media, and texts. Annotations by scholars contextualize sources.
This image is taken from a page of al-Biruni work called Chronology of an Ancient Nations. al-Biruni was a native of Iran. He was a prolific Persian scholar. While he published works in a wide variety of subjects, the majority of those works were on the subject of astronomy. He was also a pioneer in the study of comparative religion.
The following is an image that appears in the on page 296 in the book Britain Across The Seas: Africa; A History And Description Of The British Empire In Africa published in 1910 and written by Harry Johnson. This particular photograph was taken by Capt. T.C. Hincks.
This article comes from Cayton’s Weekly, a historically Black newspaper published in Seattle, Washington. The article, written by W.E.B. Du Bois, offers readers insight into the 1919 Pan-African Congress held in Paris, France.
This is an image of the first page of The Principall Investigations by Richard Hakluyt. The book was originally published in 1589. This is a reprint from between 1885 and 1890. Hakluyt was born around 1552. Hakluyt developed an early interest in travel through interactions with older relatives. He studied at the Christ College of Oxford and gained a B.A. and M.A. in Geography.
This article appears in the August 4, 1921 edition of the Omaha, Nebraska based newspaper, The Monitor. The Monitor was an African American run newspaper and typically featured stories about African Americans. This article contains quotes from African American intellectual, writer, and activist W.E.B. Du Bois, an organizer and American delegate for the 1919 Pan-African Congress.
This is an image of a poster advertising the 1912 Summer Olympic games held in Stockholm, Sweden. This particular poster was created by the artist Olle Hjortzberg as part of an advertising campaign.
This photograph shows the Mahabodhi Temple complex. The temple is a part of Bodh Gaya a religious place in the Gaya District in Bihar that is one of the four and most important pilgrimages associated with the life of Gautama Buddha. It is said to have been the place where Buddha obtained enlightenment.
This ship plan from the late-19th century offers a partial view of spatial arrangements within a Messageries steamship. The diagram comes from a book of commercial publicity and imperial propaganda written by a Messageries ship-captain, Louis Tillier, and a famous journalist, novelist, and veteran of French colonial wars, Paul Bonnetain.
This route-map of the Messageries Maritimes shipping company displays the main routes connecting metropolitan France to its empire in the Indo-Pacific. While the map dates to 1889, these routes retained their basic structure through the 1950s.
This November 19, 1921 article comes from The Chicago Whip, a Chicago-based newspaper founded by William C. Linton, an African American editor and publisher originally from Atlanta, Georgia. The paper frequently reported on racial inequality in the United States. This article in particular covers a speech Walter F.
This quilted bed cover was likely made for the marriage of John and Elisabeth Chapman on September 19, 1829.
Painted in the last phase of his career, Dutch artist Jan Vermeer’s The Love Letter is a work of oil on canvas that depicts a wealthy woman holding a love letter, seemingly just delivered to her by the maid servant at her
Based on a poem by Abel Meeropol published in January 1937, “Strange Fruit” was a song protesting the lynching of African Americans and was recorded by African American jazz singer Billie Holiday in 1939.
Largely considered the first novel, The Tale of Genji was written by Murasaki Shikibu, a noblewoman and lady-in-waiting during the early eleventh century.
The Manu-smriti, or Laws of Manu, are of the most authoritative codes of Hinduism in India, dating back to approximately 100 C.E..
The census of the United Kingdom was the tenth census and was taken on April 5, 1891.
The “flapper” craze overtook the western world in the early 1920s and was spearheaded by young women intent on bucking cultural norms of the time.
The Mandate for Palestine was a legal document that established the United Kingdom as a Mandatory in charge of Palestine and Transjordan following its occupation of the territories during World War I and their eventual concession
Despite its name, Kasai velvet, or velours du kasai, is not actually a velvet. Rather, it is embroidery on a finished piece of raffia cloth.