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Media and Communication: Primary Sources

Provides an introduction to core resources in the field of media and communication.



Historical Magazines, Trade publications, and Print Advertisements

Use these tools to search archival collections (historical trade publications, advertisments, articles, photos, etc.) around the country and world. 

See also: Using Archives and Manuscripts

Television, Radio, and Broadcasts

Archival Collections at NYU


Lantern is the search platform for the collections (over 800,000 pages of digitized texts) of the Media History Digital Library, an open access initiative led by David Pierce and Eric Hoyt. The Media History Digital Library (MHDL) digitizes collections of classic media periodicals (histories of film, broadcasting, and recorded sound) that belong in the public domain for full public access. The project is supported by owners of materials who loan them for scanning, and donors who contribute funds to cover the cost of scanning.




Serendip-o-matic connects your sources to digital materials located in libraries, museums, and archives around the world. By first examining your research interests, and then identifying related content in locations such as the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA), Europeana, and Flickr Commons, this serendipity engine helps you discover photographs, documents, maps and other primary sources.

Whether you begin with text from an article, a Wikipedia page, or a full Zotero collection, Serendip-o-matic's special algorithm extracts key terms and returns a surprising reflection of your interests. Because the tool is designed mostly for inspiration, search results aren't meant to be exhaustive, but rather suggestive, pointing you to materials you might not have discovered. At the very least, the magical input-output process helps you step back and look at your work from a new perspective. Created by scholars at George Mason University's Roy Rosenzweig Center for New Media and History for the One Week One Tool project.