The Vertical Files (file cabinets) in the Southeast Asian Archive contain many primary sources, such as programs and fliers of community and student events, government reports on refugee resettlement, and political campaign flyers for Southeast Asian American candidates. Researchers often peruse the list of subject headings (Thesaurus) for the Vertical Files materials before their visit in order to determine which files to read. These materials do not circulate but may be scanned (free) or photocopied (fee).
Primary materials in the stacks include business directories, published memoirs, and transcripts of oral histories.
SEAA archival materials (housed in Special Collections & Archives on the 5th floor of Langson Library) include photographs, artifacts, original artwork from refugee camps, letters, and diaries. All of the collections are described in the Online Archive of California.