Earlier this month, students in Professor Meg Natter’s English 122 class traveled to the main branch of the New York City Public Library on 5th Avenue to learn first-hand about primary sources.
Throughout the semester and in connection with “The Big Read,” a National Endowment for the Arts initiative in which people across the country are reading and discussing Ernest Gaines’ classic “A Lesson Before Dying,” students researched and wrote about capital punishment. At the New York City Public Library, students were able to explore primary research by researching old execution records from San Quentin and the New York Prison Association.
“This was a rare opportunity for our students. They were able to see and touch manuscripts, journals, and other primary sources to gather information,” said Natter. “By comparing primary and secondary sources, students were able to understand how they differ and why both are essential to quality research.”
The trip was sponsored by ASBCC student funds administered by Student Life & Activities.