Primary sources are the documents and other material produced by eyewitnesses to events, and history students in particular will be required to work with primary sources. There are many different types of primary sources.
Click to expand:Death certificates
Title: Describe very fully to distinguish it from all other similar documents. Give the name of the deceased and the date of death.
Provenance: State where the source originally came from, not necessarily where it is now. Baptismal marriage or burial certificates may also be available from various churches.
1. Death Certificate of Rachel Jones, died 19 June 1890, Armidale Court House Death Register, 56/90.
2. Death Certificate of Bernard Herzog, died 16 July 1908, Registrar of Birth, Deaths and Marriages NSW, 8958/1908.
4. Death Certificate of Rachel Jones, died 19 June 1890.
Armidale Court House Death Register, 56/90.
Deceased estate files
Title: State the document name on the file used giving its number and the name of the deceased.
Provenance: State the government department from which the file originated.
Repository: Give the current repository and archive office file number.
1. Affidavit under the Stamp Act, Deceased Estate File Z 4817, John Chard, Stamp Duties Office, State Records NSW, 20/6992.
4. Deceased Estate File Z 4817, John Chard.
State Records NSW, 20/6992.
Title: Give testator name and date of death.
Provenance: State location (e.g. Supreme Court of New South Wales, Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction OR after 1890 Supreme Court of New South Wales, Probate Division).
Repository: Give series and number OR identify a solicitor.
1. Will of Joseph Daly, died 14 October 1875, Supreme Court NSW, Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, Series 2, No. 1912.
2. Will of William C. Proctor, died 23 November, 1905, Supreme Court NSW, Probate Division, Series 4, No. 36309.
3. Will of John McLennan, died 24 August, 1901, A.W. Simpson and Co. Solicitors, Armidale.
6. Will of Joseph Daly, died 14 October 1875.
Supreme Court NSW, Ecclesiastical Jurisdiction, Series 2, No. 1912.
Locating graves in a cemetery can be difficult, so you need to provide the maximum amount of location detail.
Person or peoples > date of death > epitaph > name and place of cemetery > grave location detail > Date you recorded the information.
For some graves, locational information may vary e.g. some cemeteries do not have denominational divisions.
1. Mary and William Harrison, died 19 September 1901 and 17 July 1920 respectively, grave marker epitaph, Sandgate Cemetery, Newcastle, NSW, Roman Catholic 1 portion, section L.COM, lot 113, recorded by author, 17 August 2014.
4. M. & W. Harrison, grave marker epitaph.
Harrison, Mary and William died 19 September 1901 and 17 July 1920 respectively, grave marker epitaph, Sandgate Cemetery, Newcastle, NSW, Roman Catholic 1 portion, section L.COM, lot 113, recorded by author, 17 August 2014.
There are two main systems of registering transfers of property:
1. The Old System: (NSW until 1863) e.g. 1. refers to a book and number.
2. Torrens system: (after 1863).e.g. 2. refers to a volume and folio.
1. Conveyance, Solomon Cohen to Julia Hannah Cohen, 9 July 1863, Land Titles Office of New South Wales, Book 84, No. 610.
2. Certificate of Title issued to the City Bank of Sydney, 5 October 1917, Land Titles Office of New South Wales, vol. 2970, folio 191.
4. Conveyance, Solomon Cohen to Julia Hannah Cohen, 9 July 1863.
Land Titles Office of New South Wales, Book 84, No. 610.
Verbatim transcripts of parliamentary debates and proceedings in electronic or print formats.
Author: Identify which parliament (Australia or one of the States or Territories), which house of the parliament (Senate, House of Representatives, Legislative Assembly, Legislative Council, etc.), specific person if applicable.
Title: Give the title of the publication.
Details: Provide date, volume number, and page number/s.
1. Australia, Senate, 2000, Debates, vol. S25, p. 25.
2. Australia, House of Representatives, 2000, Debates, vol. HR103, pp. 2-9.
3. The Hon. W. Haigh, Second Reading Speech, NSW Heritage Bill, NSW, Legislative Assembly, 21 September 1977, Parliamentary Debates, vol. 134, p. 8140.
5. The Hon. W. Haigh, Second Reading Speech, NSW Heritage Bill.
Parliamentary Debates, Hansard, Third Series, vol. LA 134, NSW, 1977.
Acts, ordinances, bylaws.
Title: Cite the title and date exactly as they appear. Do not alter italics, capitalisation, spelling, or remove the article (a, an, the). Do not use italics for titles of delegated legislation and bills before a parliament e.g. 3 & 4.
Details: Includes chapters, parts, divisions, subdivisions e.g. 5.. Use lower case s/ss. (section/s), r/rr. (regulation/s). Sections and regulations can be even further subdivided into subsections and sub-regulations, paragraphs and subparagraphse.g. 6 – 10.
1. Copyright Act 1968 (Cwlth).
2. Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (WA).
3. Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 (Cwlth).
4. Regulation of Genetic Material Bill 2000 (Cwlth).
5. Copyright Act 1968 (Cwlth), Part IV.
6. Copyright Act 1968 (Cwlth), Part IV, s. 4.
7. Copyright Act 1968 (Cwlth), Part IV, ss. 4-7.
8. Customs (Prohibited Imports) Regulations 1956 (Cwlth), r. 2.
9. Airlines Equipment Amendment Act 1981 (Cwlth), s. 19 (1) a (ii).
10. Public Service Regulations 1999 (Cwlth), r. 83 (2) (a) (ii).
Same as footnote.
Airlines Equipment Amendment Act 1981 (Cwlth).
The Votes and Proceedings of Parliament can be a very valuable source of information for historians.
Title: Describe the document topic fully (minimum capitals/single inverted commas) followed by the title of the publication (maximum capitals, italics). If the document type is not clear in the title, place a short descriptor after the title in round brackets e.g. (annual report, return to an order, report, petition).
Details: Session of parliament, volume number, place of publication, publisher, publication date and page numbers.
1. ‘Annual report of the inspector of stocks and brands’, Votes and Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of N.S.W., session 1885, vol. 3, Sydney, Government Printer, 1885, pp. 561-597.
2. ‘By-laws of the Borough of Armidale’, Votes and Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of NSW, session 1868-9, vol. 3, Sydney, Government Printer, 1869, pp. 329-333.
3. ‘Crown land under pastoral lease’, (return to an order), Votes and Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of NSW., session 1878-9, vol. 6, Sydney, Government Printer, 1879, pp. 327-388.
4. ‘Report from the Select Committee on the Armidale Roman Catholic Church, School, and Presbytery Land Sale Bill’, Votes and Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of NSW, Session 1881, vol. 5, Sydney, Government Printer, 1882, pp. 903-909.
7. ‘Annual report of the inspector of stocks and brands’, 1885, p. 560.
‘Annual report of the inspector of stocks and brands’, Votes and Proceedings of the Legislative Assembly of N.S.W., session 1885, vol. 3, Sydney, Government Printer, 1885.
Maps & plans
Title: Describe the map or plan in terms of town, parish, county, etc. Give an edition number, date and State (if available).
Provenance: Give the State government department or council from which the map originally came (private maps have no provenance).
Repository: State where currently held (provenance and repository may be the same).
1. Parish of Arding, County of Sandon, 4th edn, Lands Department, 27 September 1926, Mitchell Library Parish Maps.
2. Plan of the Town of Armidale, County of Sandon, Lands Department, 1866, NSWSR, 10695.
3. Plan of Armidale, New England 1849, Surveyor General’s Department, copy held in University of New England Heritage Centre.
4. Armidale Cemetery, 30 January 1968 Armidale City Council, copy held in the University of New England Heritage Centre.
5. Plan of Survey of portion 523 Parish of Armidale, Lands Department, December 1864, S 236-1660.
6. Subdivision of part of Section 35, town of Armidale, for sale 10 January 1891, Mitchell Library Subdivision Plans.
10. Parish of Arding, County of Sandon, map, 27 September 1926.
Mitchell Library Parish Maps.
Letters, emails, facsimiles & telegrams
Author & Recipient: State names of the author and the recipient as fully as possible.
Form: e.g. letter, telegram, facsimile, email.
Date: Give date of the letter or state as much detail as you can e.g. 5 & 8.
Provenance: State the original government department and the branch. Provide number of the box which contains the letter and the number given to the letter.
Repository: State the current owner of the letter.
1. James S. White to A.J. Gould, letter, 10 August 1886, James S. White Letterbook, Mitchell Library MS 1350.
2. Josias S. Moffatt to Henry Brewer, letter, 11 June 1879, copy held in the University of New England Heritage Centre, Personalities File (Moffatt).
3. Duncan McKay to Eleanor Hubbard, 3 March 1902, original held by Mrs Ruby Schulz, 395 Allingham Street, Armidale, NSW.
4. Kate Brown to her husband, letter, August 1857, original held in the University of New England Heritage Centre.
5. George Haase to Emily Haase, letter, n.d., original held in author’s possession.
6. H.A. Thomas to the Honourable the Minister for Lands, letter, 8 August 1867, Lands Department, Alienation Branch, Letters Received 67/6514, NSWSR, 10/34846.
7. Andrew Piper to Joanne Smith, email, 22 July 1997, copy of original in author’s possession.
8. B.A. Rogers to L.H. Rogers, facsimile, 22 March 2002, original held in author’s possession.
9. Barbara Piper to Susan Raimann, telegram, 1 May 2005, original held by Susan Raimann, 18 Cambridge Road, Hobart, Tasmania.
White to Gould, letter, 10 August 1886.
Mitchell Library, MS 1350.
See example in ‘Secondary sources’.
1. Sally Morgan, My Place, Fremantle, 1987, p. 36.
4. Morgan, My Place, p. 48.
Morgan, Sally My Place, Fremantle, Fremantle Arts Centre Press, 1987.
Author: Identify the diary entry by date with the author’s name.
Repository: State where the diary is held or the current private owner of the diary.
1. May Morse Diary, diary entry, 8 August 1902, original held by Mrs Margaret Johnstone (nee Morse), 9 College Avenue, Armidale, NSW.
4. May Morse Diary, 12 August 1902.
May Morse Diary, original held by Mrs Margaret Johnstone (nee Morse), 9 College Avenue, Armidale, NSW.
Author: Give the name of the person interviewed, relevance e.g. 3 & 4. followed by the interviewer.
Media: Provide the means used for recording the interview (if available).
Place & date: State where and when the interview took place (if available).
Repository: Include the place where the recording is held and an identifying number if the recording belongs to a specific collection.
Permissions: Obtain the permission of the person as this is ethically important.
1. Amos Porter, interview by Ron Maguire, tape recording, Newholme, 12 December 1990, in author’s possession.
2. E. Perrott, interview by John Harris, tape recording, December 1982, University of New England Heritage Centre.
3. Barbara Piper, author’s mother, interview by Andrew Piper, digital recording, Gisborne, New Zealand, 16 January 2006, in author’s possession.
4. John McIndoe, Black Gully publican, interviewed by Joanne Smith, hand-written transcript, Launceston, 8 May 1983, Launceston Public Library, community history section, TSL/L/CH/hotels: 6783.
4. Amos Porter, interview by Ron Maguire.
Porter, Amos interview by Ron Maguire, tape recording, Newholme, 12 December 1990, in author’s possession.
Perrott, E. interview by John Harris, tape recording, December 1982, University of New England Heritage Centre.
Personal verbal communication
Casual, telephone, face-to-face
Author: Record the person and relevance
Media/date: Give form and date.
Permissions: Obtain the permission of the person as this is ethically important.
1. Brian Browne, former Director Elmonton Nursing Home, pers. comm., telephone conversation, 16 April 1998.
2. Margaret Franks, author’s maternal great-aunt, pers. comm., May 2005.
4. Browne, pers. comm., 16 April 1998.
Browne, Brian former Director Elmonton Nursing Home, pers. comm., telephone conversation, 16 April 1998.
Personal reminiscences are important and valuable sources of history.
Permissions: Prior consent of the unit coordinator is required before using personal reminiscences.
1. Personal reminiscence of the author.
4. Personal reminiscence of the author.
Do not include reference in bibliography.
Fully documented photographs are rare but provide as much detail as possible.
Details: Give short description of photograph followed by descriptor: ‘photograph’, then date. Use n.d. if undated.
Repository: State where it is held or the current owner.
Labelling: Caption any inserted figure such as a photograph with a description and footnote source e.g. Fig. 3: Photograph of William Consett Proctor1 (attach a footnote).
1. Panoramic View of Armidale, photograph, 1868 attributed, University of New England Heritage Centre, hanging on western wall.
2. William Consett Proctor, photograph, n.d., Mitchell Library Photographic collection PX 197.
3. Owens family, photograph, n.d., original held by Mrs Jessie Owens, 482 Niagara Street, Armidale.
6. Panoramic View of Armidale, photograph, 1868 attributed.
9. Proctor, photograph, n.d..
Panoramic View of Armidale, photograph, 1868 attributed, University of New England Heritage Centre, hanging on western wall.
Mitchell Library Photographic collection PX 197.
The Bible, Koran/Qu’ran, Talmud
Give the book title followed by chapter and verse or equivalent, then state the version.
Never use page numbers, only use chapter and verse or equivalent.
1. The Bible, Matthew 7:17, King James version.
2. The Koran, 86.5-10, Hilali-Khan translation.
Same as footnote.
The Bible, King James version.
The Koran, Hilali-Khan translation.
Format and publication:
Historian’s name > ancient title in italics; and in English e.g. 1. or original language e.g. 2. > use the ancient reference numbering system — Not the page number.
If you use a compendium of ancient evidence or quote an extract from another modern work instead of a complete translation of the ancient source directly, then you must cite the ancient source and the full publication details of the modern work e.g. 3. and also note the translator (in edited works the editor/s is/are the translator/s) e.g. 4.
1. Livy, From the Founding of the City, 34.1-8.
2. Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8.
3. Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8, in Roman Civilization: The Republic, N. Lewis and M. Reinhold (eds), New York, 1951, p. 71.
4. Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8, in Hannibal’s War: Books 21-30, (trans. J. C. Yardley), Oxford, 2006.
6. Livy, From the Founding of the City, 34.1-8.
9. Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8.
11. Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8, in Roman Civilization, p. 72.
16. Livy, Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8, in Hannibal’s War.
1. Livy From the Founding of the City.
2. Livy Ab Urbe Condita.
3. Livy Ab Urbe Condita, in Roman Civilization: The Republic, N. Lewis and M. Reinhold (eds), New York, Harper & Row, 1951.
4. Livy Ab Urbe Condita, 34.1-8, in Hannibal’s War: Books 21-30, (trans. J. C. Yardley), Oxford, Oxford University Press, 2006.
Plays & poetry
Author: Cite the full name of the author.
Title: Use maximum capitals, italics.
Details: Give the exact location of the line/s:
· Plays: e.g. act 3, scene 2, lines 7-13
· Poetry: e.g. lines 2-5
1. William Shakespeare, Romeo and Juliet, act 2, scene 1, line 4.
2. Judith Wright, South of My Days, verse 4, lines 8-9.
Same as footnote.
Works of art
Paintings, sketches, sculptures
Artist > title of work > description > repository > date of creation.
1. Auguste Rodin, The Thinker, bronze and marble sculpture, Musée Rodin, Paris, 1902.
6. Rodin, The Thinker.
Rodin, Auguste The Thinker, bronze and marble sculpture, Musée Rodin, Paris, 1902.
Cartoonist’s name and/or nom de plume > descriptor ‘cartoon’ > cartoon title in minimum capitals and enclosed in single inverted commas > publication details.
1. Alan Moin, cartoon,’The mentor’, Sydney Morning Herald, 9 September 2014, p. 14.
2. Livington Hopkins (Hop), cartoon, ‘Capital and labor issues’, Bulletin, 16 August 1890, reproduced in Stuart Macintyre, A Concise History of Australia, 3rd edn, Melbourne, 2009, p. 124.
5. Moin, ‘The mentor’.
8. Hopkins, ‘Capital and labor issues’.
Sydney Morning Herald.
Print: Word > author or editor/s > title > edition > place of publication > date > page number/s.
Online: Word > author or editor/s > title > URL > when accessed.
1. ‘Historiography’, Bas Aarts, Sylvia Chaulker and Edmund Weiner (eds), The Oxford Dictionary of English Grammar, 2nd edn, Oxford, 2014, p. 126.
2. ‘History’, Anon., Oxford Dictionaries, http://www.oxforddictionaries.com/
definition/english/history, accessed 14 November 2014.
6. ‘Agency’, Aart et al., Oxford Dictionary of English Grammar, p. 5.
Newspapers & magazines
Author: State the author if available
Article heading: State the heading of the article in single inverted commas, but omit if no heading is available.
Title: Give the name and italicise. State the place of publication where it is not self-evident e.g. 2. (multiple towns published newspapers called Argus)
Details: Give date of issue, then the page and column number (c.). If the text commences on one page and concludes on another, provide both sets of page numbers e.g. 5.
1. Adam Sage, ‘The little corner of France that is forever Spanish’, The Times, 6 September 2002, p. 20, c. 1.
2. Anon., ‘Bushranging on the rise’, Argus, Melbourne, 5 December 1864, p. 3.
3. ‘For sale notice’, Armidale Express, 3 August 1887, p. 5.
4. ‘Notes from our travelling reporter’, Town and Country Journal, 6 January 1874, p. 16.
5. D.G. Shaw, ‘Marvels of new gas stoves’, Australian Ladies Monthly, 3 May 1938, pp. 24-6, 32.
8. Sage, ‘The little corner’, The Times, p. 20, c. 2.
Australian Ladies Monthly.
Author: Attribute to a media officer e.g. 1.
or person responsible for making a commente.g. 2.
Title. Record the title) of the release, and write ‘media release’ after title
Details: State place and full date of the release.
1. Jim Scanlan, ‘Exhibition casts light on medicine’s darkest page’,media release, University of New England, Armidale, 12 March 2008.
2. Peter Batchelor, Victorian Minister for Public Transport, ‘New accreditation scheme for taxi, bus and hire car drivers’, media release, Parliament House, Melbourne, 1 June 2006.
5. Scanlan, ‘Exhibition casts light’, 12 March 2008.
Scanlan, Jim ‘Exhibition casts light on medicine’s darkest page’, media release, University of New England, Armidale, 12 March 2008.
Audio & multimedia works
Includes, film, video, television programs, CD-ROMs radio, YouTube/Vimeo.
Director/author: If no person, begin footnote with the title. For YouTube, credit the person who posted the video as the author using the person’s real name and/orscreen name.
Title: Use maximum capitals and italics followed by format
Details: Use available information e.g. State city or town of recording, date of recording or upload, URL, and any special credits.
Bibliography: With television, radio and YouTube, the detail is in the footnote.
1. Peter Weir (director), Gallipoli, video recording, Sydney, 1981.
2. Frontier: Stories from White Australia’s Forgotten War, CD-ROM, Sydney, 1997.
3. Wolfgang Becker (director), Goodbye Lenin, DVD, Richmond, 2004.
4. Channel 9, The Future of Work, television broadcast, Sydney, 19 October 1983.
5. Leading by proxy: Governor Ralph Darling, interview between Kelly Fuller and Erin Ihde, radio broadcast, ABC New England North West, 1 May 2012, http://www.abc.net.au/
local/audio/2012/04/30/3492168.htm, accessed 14 November 2014.
6. Krhone, Wild colonial boy–Mick Jagger, YouTube, uploaded 9 June 2006, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yr7bBaC86pY, accessed 14 November 2014.
7. Weir, Gallipoli.
9. Leading by proxy, 1 May 2012.
ABC Radio North West.
Music & songs
Music: Composer > instrumental > title of musical score > publication details.
Songs: Performer > title > authorship >publication details.
1. Igor Stravinsky, ‘The basoon solo’, The Rite of Spring, music score, London, 1975, p. 34
2. Mick Jagger, The Wild Colonial Boy, traditional song, in Tony Richardson (director), Ned Kelly, film, United Kingdom, 1970.
4. Stravinsky, ‘The basoon solo’, p.39.
8. Jagger, The Wild Colonial Boy, 1970.
Author > descriptor ‘mobile application software’ > title > version > publication date > web address > date accessed.
1. National Geographic Society, mobile application software, About 50 Greatest Photographs of National Geographic, version 1.3, 2011, http://www.nationalgeographic.com/apps, accessed 14 November 2014.
5. National Geographic Society, About 50 Greatest Photographs.
Same as footnote.
(a) blog Author of posted material > title of the work posted followed by a description > date originally produced > name of the blog in italics > title given to the blog by the blogger > blog web address > date accessed by you.
(b) wiki Author of posted material > title of the work posted > name of the wiki in italics > host of the wiki > date of posting > wiki web address > date accessed by you.
(c) blog comment Author of posted material > title of the posting commented on > name of the host site in italics > date of posting > web address > date accessed by you.
(d) unit forums Author of posted material followed by the name of the person to who made the initial posting > title of the posting > title of the forum > name of the unit in italics > name of institution > date of posting.
1. Winston Peters, ‘The way ahead: One country, one electoral franchise’, New Zealand First speech, 13 September 2000, in Kiwiblog, ‘The Sep 2000 Peters Speech’, http://www.kiwiblog.co.nz/2006/10/the_sep_2000_peters_speech.html, accessed 14 August 2012.
2. Aridd, ‘This hypothesis is no longer widely accepted’, in ‘Talk: Moriori People’, Wikipedia, 12 September 2008, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Talk%3AMoriori, accessed 30 July 2012.
3. Sam, comment posted on ‘Moriori Culture’, Virtual New Zealand, 2011, http://www.virtualoceania.net/newzealand/culture/moriori/, accessed 27 July 2012.
4. Andrew Piper, response to Linda Finlay, ‘Union involvement’, Topic 2: The history of heritage’, discussion forum, HIST335/435: Heritage Conservation, School of Humanities, University of New England, NSW, 15 July 2014.
5. Peters, ‘The Way Ahead’.
6. Aridd, ‘This hypothesis’.
9. Sam, comment posted on ‘Moriori Culture’.
16. Piper, response to Finlay.
Wikipedia is not an appropriate academic source, except when you are writing about Wikipedia itself.
Secondary Sources Bibliography