What Is an Example of a Primary Source?

To qualify as a primary source, the object or document must have been written or created during the time period studied. Primary sources are created by eyewitnesses and offer direct evidence. A diary, such as The Diary of Anne Frank, is an example of a primary source.

Other examples of written primary sources include speeches, letters, maps, charters, interview transcripts or manuscripts. Primary sources do not have to be documents and can also include pottery, works of art, clothing, photos, buildings and television footage. If the source is created after the historical time period it is from, it is considered a secondary source, even if it references a primary source.