Primary Sources by Region:

North America

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The assassination of John F. Kennedy on November 22nd in 1963 shocked, saddened, and bewildered American children. Girls and boys of all ages watched the funeral broadcast on television—including those who lived abroad during the 1960s. For many… [more]

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Slotted to premier on Christmas week, Famous Players’s Cinderella (1914) was marketed as a child-friendly fantasy for the whole family whose cutting-edge cinematography would bring to life the popular fairytale of rags-to-riches girlhood. However,… [more]

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This is an excerpt from an interview with a male teenager from East Harlem, New York City, taken in a famous Payne Fund Study, the "Motion Picture Study" (MPS). The MPS was undertaken from 1929 to 1934 by sociologists from New York University in the… [more]

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A young boy slumbers in his bed, ensconced in a non-descript, middle class bedroom. He is jarred awake to find his bed floating out his window and into space. So begins an episode of Winsor McCay's epic series, Little Nemo in Slumberland, which ran… [more]

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The book-length narrative, Incidents in the Life of a Slave Girl (1861), chronicles the experiences of Harriet Jacobs who was born a slave in Edenton, North Carolina, in 1813. Harriet was unaware of her slave status until at age six, her mother died… [more]

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The map, issued by the Center for Disease Control (CDC), shows the percentages of substantially overweight, or obese, low-income children by county and in territories and tribal organizations where Native Americans live. The problem extends to both… [more]

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Franciscan friar Bernardino de Sahagún recorded this text in the mid-16th century as part of an effort to gather information about native Aztec history and customs. Sahagún went to Mexico in 1529 as one of the first missionaries assigned to the… [more]

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The photograph, dated 1928, from the well-known ethnographic collection The North American Indian by Edward Edward S. Curtis, is a portrait of a young Piegan girl standing in front of a painted tipi, or conical tent. The label on the photograph by… [more]

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In 1753, 15 year old Mary Jemison was captured by Indians along the Pennsylvania frontier during the Seven Years' War between the French, English, and Indian peoples of North America. She was adopted and incorporated into the Senecas, a familiar… [more]

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Charlotte Temple: A Tale of Truth, published in 1791, was the first American bestseller. The author, Susanna Haswell Rowson, was born in England circa 1762, and died in 1824 in Massachusetts, where she spent most of her life. Charlotte Temple tells… [more]