techniques and guidelines by which historians use primary sources and other evidence to research and then to write histories in the form of accounts of the past
Following Garraghan (in: A Guide to Historical Method, 168) puts six questions that should be answered as minimal standard for a sound historical method:
- When was the source, written or unwritten, produced (date)?
- Where was it produced (localization)?
- By whom was it produced (authorship)?
- From what pre-existing material was it produced (analysis)?
- In what original form was it produced (integrity)?
- What is the evidential value of its contents (credibility)?
- Gilbert J. Garraghan, A Guide to Historical Method, Fordham University Press: New York (1946). ISBN 0-8371-7132-6.
- Louis Gottschalk, Understanding History: A Primer of Historical Method, Alfred A. Knopf: New York (1950). ISBN 0-394-30215-X.
- Martha Howell and Walter Prevenier, From Reliable Sources: An Introduction to Historical Methods, Cornell University Press: Ithaca (2001). ISBN 0-8014-8560-6.
- C. Behan McCullagh, Justifying Historical Descriptions, Cambridge University Press: New York (1984). ISBN 0-521-31830-0.
- R. J. Shafer, A Guide to Historical Method, The Dorsey Press: Illinois (1974). ISBN 0-534-10825-3.