The Primary Source


The Primary Source, the official journal of the Society of Mississippi Archivists, is a peer-reviewed journal dedicated to supporting the research of archivists, librarians, and historians in Mississippi and beyond. Students are welcomed and encouraged to submit manuscripts.

Journal Contents

The Primary Source welcomes the following article types:

  • Research Articles describe original research completed by the author(s). Research methodologies may vary. These forms of papers should contain original research questions, a strong review of the literature, a summary of the methods and limitations of the study, results, discussion, and conclusion. The discussion and conclusion should consider the implications of the research and suggestions for future studies. Most important, these forms of papers should be replicable. (Suggested length: 6,000 words)
  • Case Studies detail actual experiences within the author(s) organization(s) and offer a means for comparison or replication in a different environment. These papers should include a strong review of the literature and a detailed description of the situation and location. The situation should be new or implemented in an original way. The discussion and conclusion should consider the relevance outside of the situated reported. (Suggested length: 3,000 words)
  • Literature Reviews are systematic studies that offer exhaustive reviews of existing current literature in a particular subject area. Systematic reviews must be original and must differentiate themselves from similar studies, especially if a similar topic has been covered in recent literature. The review of literature should be extremely comprehensive and should primarily – if not exclusively – contain peer-reviewed articles. This type of paper should also contain a clear and detailed description of the methodology for gathering the literature. The discussion and conclusion should consider the relevance of the findings. (Suggested length: 6,000 words)
  • Professional Resources include annotated bibliographies, essays reviewing current developments, or other essays designed for practical use. (Length varies)

Submission Requirements

Articles submitted for peer review should be between 3,000 and 6,000 words (depending on article type) and follow the Chicago Manual of Style (17th edition), notes and bibliography format. Manuscripts should be submitted as a Word document. Text, including block quotations, should be 12 pt Times New Roman font and double-spaced. Figures and tables are acceptable and should be embedded in the text with short, descriptive captions.

The author’s name and contact information should appear only in appropriate fields in the submissions manager, not on any submitted documents. Authors will also be required to submit a 250-word abstract and cover letter to the submissions manager; do not include these in the manuscript.

How to Submit

To submit a paper, please visit the journal website ( and create a free account.

Please contact the editor-in-chief, Carrie P. Mastley (, for any inquiries.