Skip to main content

Canadian Studies: Find Primary Sources

Selected resources in the RRU library for the study of Canada

Internet Sources


CANSIM : provides fast and easy access to a large range of the latest statistics compiled by Statistics Canada, Canada's national statistical agency.

What are Primary Sources?

Primary sources are works created

  • at the time of an event, or
  • by a person who directly experienced or observed an event.

Secondary sources in history, on the other hand are often based on primary sources and involve analysis or interpretation of the original material.

 Primary sources can include

  • Interviews, diaries, letters, or other correspondence, speeches, autobiographies, memoirs and witness statements
  • Articles containing original research, data, or findings never before shared
  • Original hand-written manuscripts
  • Government documents and public records
  • Art, photographs, films, maps, fiction, and music produced at the time of the event
  • Newspaper and magazine articles written at the time of the event
  • Artifacts, buildings, furniture, and clothing created at the time of the event


  • Parliament of Canada : Hansard (Debates) and Journals of the House of Commons and Senate of Canada from the 35th Parliament, 1st Session (January 17, 1994) to the present session.
  • Government of British Columbia : portal to government websites for British Columbia.
  • Canadian Heritage  : a federal government department responsible for national policies and programs that promote Canadian content, foster cultural participation, active citizenship and participation in Canada's civic life, and strengthen connections among Canadians.


BC Laws  From the Government of British Columbia this site provides free public access to the laws of British Columbia. This unofficial current consolidation of BC Statutes and Regulations is updated continually as new and amended laws come into force.  BC Laws also provides access to:
•Full-text orders-in-council documents from the year 1872 to present.
•A table of legislative changes and point-in-time legislative documents allowing users to see how the documents have changed over time., B.C. Gazette Parts I and II.


Sources of information about Canada

Virtual Museum of Canada:

Canadian virtual museum space is your definitive online resource for Canada's museums and their collections. It's a unique space featuring a wealth of engaging multimedia content. Dive into a world of arts, science, and history and explore our stories as told by Canadian museums.