Any historian or even someone just interested in history will tell you that primary sources are always better than second hand accounts. Without the filter (and bias) of a second author to go through, the primary documents (news accounts, personal stories, memorabilia) can help you tell what history really was like.
With that in mind, I noticed just the other day that Google Books now has LIFE magazine full-text available. This is the cover, ads, everything!
If you’ve never had a chance to visit the Google Books site much, then you are in for a treat! There are a ton of viewing options, from single to double-page spreads and even snapshots of the whole magazine!
Besides LIFE, I’ve also noticed a nice assortment of other titles showing up full-text on Google Books. These include:
- Popular Science
- Popular Mechanics
and a host of others, including, dare I say it, The Weekly World News!
Beyond just the magazine, however, you get tag clouds, maps of places mentioned and even a chance to view other issues from differing years.
The upshot here? Say what you want, but Google Books is changing our perceptions of information and maybe even the thought of libraries as well? I know I’ve written about this before to a large extent, but for history writers, this is a great advancement forward!
Take a look at some of the sources for more titles and neat stuff on Google Books!
Have a great weekend!