Primary sources can take many different forms. Letters, accounts and other kinds of documents written at the time of an event or era allow a nuanced and detailed understanding of historical issues. Material below explains ways to locate primary sources in Tripod and Worldcat. To find additional primary sources, historical studies in books and journal articles will often offer the best recommendations. Check footnotes and bibliographies for references to material written in the medieval period.
Finding Primary Sources
Primary sources that are in the Tricollege libraries will often be listed in Tripod under subject words combined with such terms as "sources", "correspondence", or "personal narratives". Examples include:
Remembering Childhood in the Middle East by
Publication Date: 2010-09-01
See the memoirs in the sections The end of the Ottoman Empire (1923) and European colonial rule and the rise of Arab nationalism (1830-1967.
Available in both print and ebook copies.
Sephardi Lives by
Publication Date: 2014-08-27
This ground-breaking documentary history contains over 150 primary sources originally written in 15 languages by or about Sephardi Jews--descendants of Jews who fled medieval Spain and Portugal settling in the western portions of the Ottoman Empire. Reflecs Sephardi history in all its diversity, from the courtyard to the courthouse, spheres intimate, political, commercial, familial, and religious.
Also available in Tripod as an ebook.
Goodbye, Antoura by
Publication Date: 2016-10-01
When World War I began, Karnig Panian was only five years old, living among his fellow Armenians in the Anatolian village of Gurin. Four years later, American aid workers found him at an orphanage in Antoura, Lebanon. He was among nearly 1,000 Armenian and 400 Kurdish children who had been abandoned by the Turkish administrators, left to survive at the orphanage without adult care. This memoir offers the extraordinary story of what he endured in those years--as his people were deported from their Armenian community, as his family died in a refugee camp in the deserts of Syria, as he survived hunger and mistreatment in the orphanage.
The Hundred-Year Walk by
Publication Date: 2016-01-12
An epic tale of one man's courage in the face of genocide and his granddaughter's quest to tell his story. In the heart of the Ottoman Empire as World War I rages, Stepan Miskjian's world becomes undone. He is separated from his family as they are swept up in the government's mass deportation of Armenians into internment camps.
My Grandmother by
Publication Date: 2008-04-17
When Fethiya Cetin discovered that her grandmother was an Armenian, saved by the Turkish captain who went on to adopt her, Cetin set out to find her grandmother's lost relations in America.
Titles you can request through EZ Borrow or Interlibrary Loan:
The black raven. Author: Mathossentz, Murad, 1897-. Policy Research, 1988.
Forced into genocide : memoirs of an Armenian soldier in the Ottoman Turkish army. Author: Alexanian, Yervant, 1895-1983. Transaction Publishers, 2017.
Memoirs of Sarkis Narzakian. Author: Narzakian, Sarkis. Gomidas Institute, 1995.
A Jewish Voice from Ottoman Salonica by
Publication Date: 2012-01-11
The memoirist, Sa'adi Besalel a-Levi (1820-1903), wrote about Ottoman Jews' daily life at a time when the finely wrought fabric of Ottoman society was just beginning to unravel. His vivid portrayal of life in Salonica, a major port in the Ottoman Levant with a majority Jewish population, thus provides a unique window into a way of life before it disappeared as a result of profound political and social changes and the World Wars.
Also available as an ebook: .B H
The memoirs of Doctor Meir Yoel : an autobiographical source on social change in Salonika at the turn of the 20th century by
Publication Date: 2011
Title you can request through EZ Borrow or Interlibrary Loan:
I remember Rhodes. Author: Levy, Rebecca Amato, 1912-. Sepher-Hermon Press for Sephardic House at Congregation Shearith Israel, 1987
Farewell, Babylon by
Publication Date: 1976
Memoir of growing up as a Jew in Baghdad in the 1940s and 50s.
Memories of Eden by
Publication Date: 2010-04-28
Reconstructs the last years of the oldest Jewish Diaspora community in the world through the recollections of Violette Shamash, a Jewish woman who was born in Baghdad in 1912.