Spanish Language and Literature
Resources, both online and elsewhere, for the Spanish language and literature, including Latin American.
- Archives Portal EuropeInternet Gateway for Documents and Archives in Europe
- British Library: Archives and Manuscriptsmedieval to modern
- LANIC's Archives Pagelinks by country
What are Primary Sources?
Primary sources are created at the time of an historical event or during a particular time period. In literature, they often includes a writer's personal papers, drafts, correspondence, etc. They can also include:
- Diaries, journals, interviews, letters, memos, manuscripts.
- Memoirs and autobiographies.
- Records collected by government agencies, such as births, deaths, marriages; permits and licenses issued; census data, etc.).
- Records of organizations connected with a writer.
- Published materials (books, magazine and journal articles, newspaper articles) written at the time about a particular event.
- Photographs, audio and video recordings, and film.
- Artifacts of all kinds: physical objects, buildings, furniture, tools, appliances and household items, clothing, toys.
Selected Resources at MSEL
We have a very rich collection of primary sources, including the following. Ask the librarian for Spanish for more information.
- Manuel Lizondo Borda PapersArchive of Literary Manuscripts and Photographs of Argentine Poet and Historian Manuel Lizondo Borda. Circa 1920-1940. Including 5 separate manuscripts of an unpublished historical novel entitled El Sargento GomezI, and various photograph albums of c.200 loose photographs.
- Eleanor Turnbull PapersCollection consists of correspondence, translations of Spanish poetry, notes, and personal items. Most of the collection dates from the 1930s through the 1950s, and deals with Turnbull's work as a translator. Among her correspondents were John Ciardi and Archibald MacLeish. Her translations include the works of Pedro Salinas, Miguel de Unamuno, and Gabriela Mistral.
- Jorge Guillén CollectionThe collection consists of two series: writings and outgoing letters. The writings are presentation copies of 7 of his works. The letters span 1957-1984, and document part of Guillén's time in the United States. They are addressed to a former student.
- José Robles Pazos PapersThe collection relates the plight of Robles's family after his arrest. Included is correspondence of John Dos Passos regarding Robles's arrest and execution. It is thought that Dos Passos's disillusionment with Communism began with the Robles case. The collection consists of correspondence, a contract for the Spanish translation of 13 books by H.L. Mencken, and 2 life insurance policies.
Guides to Archival Research in the Eisenhower Library
- Biblioteca Nacional: Inventario General de manuscritos. D-level: Z 6621 .M197
- Archivos municipales españoles : guía bibliográfica . B-level: CD 1852 .A2 C47 1999
- Los archivos españoles, Simancas. B-level: CD 1859 .S5 A4 1993 QUARTO
- Catalogue of the Spanish MSS: The British Library. D-level: Z 6621.B86 S7
- Guía de los archivos estatales españoles : guía del investigador Libraries Service Center: CD1850 .S67 1984
- Manual de archivos municipales. Libraries Service Center: CD 1851 .C67 1982
- Catálogo de manuscritos de la Biblioteca Universitaria de Salamanca. D-level: Z 6621 .S35 1997
- Manuscritos de España : guía de catálogos impresos. D-level: Z 6620.S7 Z995 1989
- Dictionary of Archival Terminology (with Spanish equivalents). Gen Ref CD 945 .D531
- The Directory of university libraries in Europe. Gen Ref: Z 675 .U5 D57 includes contact information and holdings. No subject index, but you can scan the Areas of Specialization for each institution.
- Finding archive catalogs or guides in the Libraries Catalog: do a Keyword Search on Subject keywords such as archives, guide, archives nationales, spain, mexico (etc.), manuscripts, catalogs, handbooks. Another good subject keyword is Sources. This gets you primary literature. There are many indexes and guides to individual archives, or archives in specific subjects areas, such as music, history, literature, etc.
Archive Finder: Indexes US and UK archives
ArchiveGrid: A database for locating special collections worldwide.
WorldCat: Limit your search to "Archival materials". Manuscripts back to the Middle Ages
- Working with primary sources sets your research and writing apart from others'.
- Grants are often focused on research using archival sources.
- Manuscripts (of all kinds) do not yield their meaning easily. It's up to the researcher to make sense of them.
- Often what you find is not what you were looking for. Be awake to new discoveries!