When you want to learn about the past, it is always beneficial as a historian and researcher to utilize resources that are first-hand accounts of the events, culture, and overall condition of the time period you are researching. Usually, these are photographs, letters, autobiographies, films and media, and so much more. A primary source can usually serve as an original source of information on the topic and can give insight into many aspects of that time period's culture--depending on how close the source is to the time period being researched.
Primary sources can include but are not limited to:
In contrast to a primary source, a secondary source is information that was created after the time period being researched. Secondary sources are often created by historians or other curators of history who use primary sources as a basis for their own research. While it is helpful to be close to the time period for primary sources, in some cases it's best to use the most recent resource for secondary sources.
Secondary sources can include but are not limited to: