- Online Primary Sources
- Virginia History
- General U.S. History
- American Indians
- Colonial America
- George Washington
- Founding Documents
- American Revolution and Early Republic
- Civil War
- Reconstruction and Jim Crow
- Progressive Era
- Urbanization and Modernization
- Depression Era and World War II
- Civil Rights
Online Primary Sources
The Living Room Candidate: A History of Presidential Campaign Commercials, 1952-2000, American Museum of the Moving Image
This site offers 183 television commercials used since 1952 to sell presidential candidates to the American public and an annotated guide to 21 websites created for the 1996 and 2000 elections. Ads from each election are accessible by year as well as by common themes and strategies used over the years, such as 'Looking Presidential,' 'Attack Ads,' 'Family Man,' and 'Real People.' Essays (200-400 words) analyze ad strategies of major party candidates for each election; and a program guide (1,000-words) for high school students presents a history of the usage of TV commercials in campaigns. Valuable for students of American political history, consumer culture, and advertising history.
This easily navigated site presents images and database information for more than 7,000 advertisements printed primarily in the United States from 1911 to 1955. It is an excellent archive of primary documents for students of consumer and popular culture.
Emergence of Advertising in America: 1850-1920, Duke University Digital Scriptorium
This site contains images of more than 9,000 advertising items and publications dating from 1850 to 1920. Selected items illustrate the rise of consumer culture in America from the mid-19th century and the development of a professionalized advertising industry. The images are grouped into eleven categories that include: advertising ephemera (trade cards, calendars, almanacs, postcards); broadsides; advertising cookbooks from food companies and appliance manufacturers; early advertising industry promotion publications; Lever Brothers Lux (soap) advertisements; outdoor advertising; and tobacco advertisements. Each category contains a brief (250-word) overview of the subject matter. The site also includes a timeline of the history of the advertising industry from the 1850s to 1920.
Fifty Years of Coca-Cola Television Advertisements, LOC American Memory
Highlights of Coca-Cola television advertisements, including 50 commercials, broadcast outtakes, and experimental footage. There are five examples of stop-motion advertisements from the mid-1950s, 18 experiments with color and lighting for television ads from 1964, and well-known commercials, such as the "Hilltop" commercial featuring the song "I'd Like to Buy the World a Coke" (1971); the "Mean Joe Greene" commercial (1979); the first "Polar Bear" commercial (1993); the "Snowflake" commercial (1999); and "First Experience," an international commercial filmed in Morocco (1999). While small, this site provides a good resource for studying the history of post-World War II consumer culture in terms of content and technique.
Theodore Roosevelt: His Life and Times on Film, American Memory, Library of Congress
Theodore Roosevelt was the first president to have his life chronicled through extensive use of film. This site offers 104 films depicting events in RooseveltÕs life, from the Spanish-American War in 1898 to his death in 1919. This site is a good resource for learning about Theodore Roosevelt and early film.
The Wizard of Oz: An American Fairy Tale
This well-designed exhibit is composed of three galleries focused on the cultural impact of L. Frank Baum's The Wonderful Wizard of Oz that examine various aspects of the book, including W.W. Denslow's artwork; the 1902-1903 stage play that became one of Broadway's greatest successes; the classic 1939 MGM movie, with 16 panels examining the cast, production, and music, including a full-page color advertisement placed in the September 1939 issue of Cosmopolitan; and the varieties of Oz-related novelties that have appeared over the years, including The Wizard of Oz Monopoly game by Hasbro, a Wizard of Oz stamp, and "The Royal Bank of Oz" rebate check from MGM.
The American Variety Stage, 1870-1920, American Memory, Library of Congress
This collection documents the development of vaudeville and other popular entertainment from the 1870s to the 1920s. It includes 334 English- and Yiddish-language play scripts, 146 theater programs and playbills, 61 motion pictures, and 10 sound recordings. This site also features 143 photos and 29 memorabilia items documenting the life of Harry Houdini.
American Shores: Maps of the Middle Atlantic Region to 1850, New York Public Library
This attractive site explores the mid-Atlantic region and history through maps created before 1850. An extensive collection offers more than 840 historical maps of many different types. In addition to numerous regional and state maps, these include land surveys, coast surveys, nautical charts, military maps, ornamental maps, and city maps. An overview provides historical context for reading the maps of the geographic regions. In addition, the site offers several special features. "Basics of Maps" explains cartographic terms and features. "Maps Through History" highlights particular maps and map genres from the collection, including a look at New York Harbor, the Hudson River, nautical charts, maps revealing early transportation routes, and maps of American Revolution battle sites. "Geographical Areas" highlights many kinds of maps and what information they offer.
Panoramic Maps, 1847-1929
This site presents more than 1,000 original panoramic maps, a popular cartographic form during the late 19th and early 20th centuries. The maps cover the contiguous 48 states and four Canadian provinces of British Columbia, Nova Scotia, Ontario, and Quebec from 1847 to 1929. Viewers can zoom in to find artists' renderings of individual streets, buildings, and landscapes. An excellent resource for studying urbanization, cities, growth, and mapmaking.
David Rumsey Historical Map Collection, Crytography Associates
This site consists of more than 4,400 historical maps of North and South America. Most of the maps were made in the 18th and 19th centuries; many are notable for their craftsmanship. Searchable by country, state, publication author, keyword, date, title, event, subject, and name of engraver or printer. This site vividly conveys how certain locations have changed over time.
Blues, Gospel, and the Fort Valley Music Festivals, 1938-1943, American Memory, Library of Congress
This site is a collection of 104 sound recordings from annual folk festivals held at Fort Valley State College, an African-American teaching college in central Georgia. It also provides 63 items of written documentation about the festival and the recording project. The collection is an extraordinary record of non-commercial American music and musical styles.
Max Hunter Folk Song Collection, Southwest Missouri State University
This site is a collection of audio files and song transcriptions of more than 1,000 songs recorded in the Ozark Mountains of Missouri and Arkansas between 1956 and 1976. Lyrics for all songs are included; some also have musical notations, names of singers, and location and date of the recording. No information is offered for composer or lyricist. Users may browse singers and song titles or search titles using keywords.
Historic American Sheet Music, 1850-1920, American Memory Library of Congress
This extensive collection provides a window on American culture between 1850 and 1920 by offering more than 3,000 pieces of sheet music from Duke University's Rare Book, Manuscript, and Special Collections Library. These musical pieces represent American history and culture through a variety of music types including minstrel, protest, sentimental, patriotic, and political songs, bel canto, spirituals, dance music, vaudeville, and musical pieces. The collection is particularly strong in antebellum Southern music, Confederate imprints, and Civil War music and includes a large collection of piano marches, opera excerpts, waltzes, polkas, and quadrilles as well. The site also offers a 750-word essay, a 1000-word essay that defines sheet music as a cultural medium and outlines the history of music publishing in the U.S., and a bibliography of more than 150 works on the history of sheet music, composers, musicians, and performers in the U.S.
Like a Family: The Making of a Southern Cotton Mill World, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
The site is a companion to the book Like a Family: The Making of a Southern Cotton Mill World that offers selected oral history resources used in the book, which depicts lives in the southern textile mill towns from the 1880s to the 1930s. In addition to its three chronological sections discussing the South's transition from agriculture to mill work in the late 19th century, life in the mills and the mill villages, and the millhands' labor protests and strikes of the 1920s and 1930s, the site contains more than 60 audio clips drawn from hundreds of oral history interviews with descendants of millhands and others involved in the history of the Southern textile industry. The audio clips are described with brief (25-50 word) descriptions of the contents. A "Teaching Resources" section offers four ideas for class projects using the sources on the site and also provides links to other sources on the Web.
Studs Terkel: Conversations with America, Chicago Historical Society
Oral History Online has full-text transcripts of more than 55 searchable interviews. Current offerings include "The University History Series" focusing on the Free Speech Movement, "The Suffragists Oral History Project," and interviews regarding the medical response to the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco, 1981-1984. The site also contains "Oral History Tips" and guides to "Conducting an Oral History" and "Oral History Interviewing."
Oral History Online! Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley
Oral History Online has full-text transcripts of more than 55 searchable interviews. Current offerings include "The University History Series" focusing on the Free Speech Movement, "The Suffragists Oral History Project," and interviews regarding the medical response to the AIDS epidemic in San Francisco, 1981-1984. The site also contains "Oral History Tips" and guides to "Conducting an Oral History" and "Oral History Interviewing."
Bound for Glory: America in Color, 1939-1943, Library of Congress
This exhibition offers 70 color pictures taken by photographers of the Farm Security Administration/Office of War Information (FSA/OWI) between 1939 and 1943. This collection "reveals a surprisingly vibrant world that has typically been viewed only through black-and-white images. These vivid scenes and portraits capture the effects of the Depression on America's rural and small town populations, the nation's subsequent economic recovery and industrial growth, and the country's great mobilization for World War II."
Surveyors of the West: William Henry Jackson and Robert Brewster Stanton, New York Public Library Digital Collections
This site presents the journals and photographs of two men who surveyed the western states in the second half of the 19th century. William Henry Jackson was a photographer, artist, and writer who traveled along the route of the Union Pacific Railway in 1869. Robert Brewster Stanton was a civil engineer who surveyed canyons in Colorado for the Colorado Canyon and Pacific Railroad Company between 1889 and 1890. This site is easy to navigate and is useful for studying western states, the environment, and photography in the 19th century.
When They Were Young: A Photographic Retrospective of Childhood, Library of Congress
These 66 photographs capture the diverse experiences of children from many different parts of the world. The collection includes early 19th-century daguerreotypes, turn-of-the-century studio portraits, and 20th-century prints and stereographs.
Florida State Archives Photographic Collection, Joan Morris, Florida State Archive
More than 100,000 photographs, many focusing on specific localities from the mid-nineteenth century to the present, are available on this website. Materials include collections on agriculture, the Seminole Indians, state political leaders, Jewish life, family life, postcards, and tourism.
Touring Turn-of-the-Century America: Photographs from the Detroit Publishing Company, 1880-1920, American Memory, Library of Congress
The Detroit Publishing Company mass produced photographic images--especially color postcards, prints, and albums--for the American market from the late 1890s to 1924. This collection of more than 25,000 glass negatives and transparencies and about 300 color photolithographs also includes images taken prior to the company’s formation by landscape photographer William Henry Jackson, who became the company’s president in 1898. Although many images were taken in eastern locations, other areas of the U.S., the Americas, and Europe are represented. The collection specializes in views of buildings, streets, colleges, universities, natural landmarks, resorts, and copies of paintings. More than 300 photographs were taken in Cuba during the Spanish-American War. About 900 Mammoth Plate Photographs include views of Hopi peoples and their crafts and landscapes along several railroad lines in the 1880s and 1890s.
Centennial Celebration, Bureau of the Census
This site provides a wealth of statistical information on the U.S. population. While most materials offer recent data, more than 30 comprehensive reports and tables track decade-by-decade demographic shifts, including urban and rural population change, population of the largest 100 cities, population density, and homeownership rates.
Dynamics of Idealism: Volunteers for Civil Rights, 1965-1982, University of Wisconsin-Madison
Provides documentation collected for a study of the attitudes, backgrounds, goals, and experiences of volunteers participating in a 1965 Southern Christian Leadership Conference voter registration effort. Includes questionnaires submitted prior to and following the project, as well as a follow-up survey conducted in 1982. Participants were queried as to reasons they volunteered, what they expected, their attitudes regarding race and politics, and subsequent attitudes regarding civil rights, violence, and social change. This information is valuable for those studying the civil rights movement and sociological aspects of American reformers.
LETTERS AND DIARIES
Trails to Utah and the Pacific: Diaries and Letters, 1846-1869, LOC American Memory; Brigham Young University; and Utah Academic Library Constortium
Diaries documenting the westward treks of 45 men and four women during the period of the California Gold Rush and rise of Mormonism are offered in this site. Although most of these travelers took either the California or Mormon trails, a few diaries provide accounts describing life on trails to Oregon and Montana. The diaries are complemented by 82 photographs and illustrations and 43 maps, including an interactive one displaying trails, cities, rivers, and landmarks. There are seven published guides, two essays on the Mormon and California trails (9,100 words; 5,500 words), brief biographies of most of the diarists, and a list of suggested readings. This is an excellent collection of materials that documents 49 individual perspectives on a movement that encompassed an estimated 500,000 people.
Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War, University of Virginia
A massive, searchable archive with thousands of pages of maps, images, letters, diaries, newspapers, and church, agricultural, military, and public records—all relating to two communities (Staunton, Virginia, and Chambersburg, Pennsylvania) before, during, and after the Civil War.
The Story of Virginia, Virginia Historical Society
This attractive website offers a presentation on the history of Virginia from prehistoric times to the present with essays, images, and teaching resources. There are ten chapters: the first Virginians; the settlement of colonial Virginia; Virginia’s society before 1775; Virginians in the American Revolution; Virginians as Southerners, Confederates, and New Southerners; Virginians in the 20th century; the struggles of African-American and female Virginians for equality; and a final chapter on images of Virginia in popular culture. Each chapter has an essay featuring images of relevant items in the collections of the Virginia Historical Society. The “resource bank” collects all 95 featured images. Additionally, the site offers a teacher’s guide for each chapter listing the standards of learning, a summary of key points, classroom activities and lesson plans, links to related websites, and information on tours, outreach programs, and hands-on-history programs.
WPA Life Histories, The Library of Virginia
Provides 1,350 life histories and youth studies created by the Virginia Writers’ Project (VWP)—part of the Works Progress Administration Federal Writers’ Project—between 1938 and 1941. Also offers more than 50 interviews with ex-slaves conducted by the VWP’s all-black Virginia Negro Studies unit in 1936 and 1937 and six VWP folklore studies produced between 1937 and 1942.
The American Experience: John Brown’s Holy War, PBS
This companion site to the 1999 PBS documentary on John Brown uses special features, a timeline, an interactive map, short biographies and histories, and a teacher’s guide to explain the story of Brown’s life and times. A teacher’s guide offers discussion questions and four classroom activities. An interactive map follows Brown’s movements across the country from his birth in 1800 to his execution and burial in 1859.
General U.S. History
American Memory, Library of Congress
This expansive archive of American history and culture features photographs, prints, motion pictures, manuscripts, maps, and sound recordings dating from roughly 1490. This site offers more than seven million digital items from more than 100 collections on subjects ranging from African-American political pamphlets to California folk music, from baseball to the Civil War.
Visitors can search the entire American Memory collection or the individual topical collections for Virginia material.
Making of America, University of Michigan
This site is a “digital library” of thousands of primary documents in American social history from the Antebellum period through Reconstruction. It offers more than 3 million pages of text from 10,000 volumes and 50,000 journal articles. A search for material with Virginia in the title yields more than 300 records.
Documenting the American South, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Libraries
This database presents nearly 1,400 primary documents about the American South in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries, and it features much antebellum history material. “First-Person Narratives of the American South, 1860–1920” offers approximately 140 diaries, autobiographies, memoirs, travel accounts, and ex-slave narratives, and concentrates on women, blacks, workers, and American Indians. “North American Slave Narratives” also furnishes roughly 250 texts. “The Church in the Southern Black Community, Beginnings to 1920,” traces “how Southern African Americans experienced and transformed Protestant Christianity into the central institution of community life.” “The Southern Homefront, 1861–1865” documents “non-military aspects of Southern life during the Civil War.” And “The North Carolina Experience, Beginnings to 1940” provides approximately 575 histories, descriptive accounts, institutional reports, works of fiction, images, oral histories, and songs. Visitors can use the geographic index to browse the extensive list of materials from Virginia.
History Matters: The U.S. Survey Course on the Web, CHNM, George Mason University
Designed for high school and college teachers of U.S. History survey courses, History Matters provides a range of resources, including: 900 primary documents in text, image, and audio; an annotated guide to 700 of the best U.S. History websites; guides to using various kinds of online primary sources, such as oral history and maps; and moderated discussions about teaching.
African-American Women, The Digital Scriptorium, Duke University
Writings of three 19th-century African-American women are offered through this site. It features scanned images and transcriptions of an 85-page memoir by Elizabeth Johnson Harris (1867–1923), a Georgia women whose parents had been slaves; a 565-word letter written in 1857 by a North Carolinian slave named Vilet Lester; and four letters written between 1837 and 1838 by Hannah Valentine and Lethe Jackson, slaves on a Virginia plantation. The documents are accompanied by three background essays, six photographs, a bibliography of seven titles on American slave women, and eight links to additional resources. Documents offer insight into the lives of women living under slavery and during its aftermath in the South.
Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, Gilder Lehrman Institute
http://www.gilderlehrman.org/This site provides multimedia resources and links for teaching American history. The site offers a full U.S. history textbook and more than 1,500 searchable and briefly annotated links to American history-related sites, as well as a great number of early writings, speeches, and political documents. Of particular interest is an interactive timeline detailing geographic expansion and showing historical events in chronological relation to one another.
The Digital Classroom, National Archives and Records Administration
A series of activities, primary documents, lesson plans, links, and worksheets designed to help teachers use archival documents in the classroom. Includes 20 thematically-oriented teaching activities and 35 lessons and activities organized around constitutional issues.
Africans in America, PBS Online
This companion to the PBS series Africans in America traces the history of Africans in America in four chronological parts: “The Terrible Transformation” (1450–1750); “Revolution” (1750–1805); “Brotherly Love” (1791–1831); and “Judgment Day” (1831–1865). The site offers 200 primary documents, 75 images and maps, and brief descriptions by historians. Teacher guides offer ideas for questions, activities, and lessons for elementary and secondary students.
United States Historical Census Data Browser, University of Virginia Library
This site provides data gathered from census records and other government sources for a study entitled “Historical Demographic, Economic, and Social Data: The United States, 1790–1970.” For each decade, users can browse extensive population- and economic-oriented statistical information at state and county levels, arranged according to a variety of categories, including place of birth, age, gender, marital status, race, ethnicity, and education.
Avalon Project: Documents in Law, History, and Government, Yale Law School
This website is a collection of more than 3,500 full-text documents relevant to the fields of law, history, economics, politics, diplomacy, and government. The documents are divided into five century categories: pre-18th, 18th, 19th, 20th, and 21st. Includes treaties, presidential papers and addresses, and colonial charters, as well as state and federal constitutional and legal documents. The documents are grouped into 64 Major Collection categories as well, such as Thomas Jefferson's papers, American diplomacy, and the Cold War.
Jews in America: Our Story, Center for Jewish History
This website explores the history of American Jews within the larger history of the United States from the 17th century to the present through essays, images, video presentations, and interactive timelines. It presents this history in eight sections divided by time period. Each section has short topical essays explaining the period, video and audio presentations, and a gallery of 590 images. Some sections have “featured artifacts” that provide more detailed information. The site also presents a timeline that contains links to related websites about the event.
American Documents Project, E.A. Schwartz, California State University at San Marcos
This site presents full-text transcriptions of primary documents pertaining to federal Indian policy in the late 19th century. It includes published reports of the Commissioner of Indian Affairs and Board of Indian Commissioners that shaped most aspects of Indian policy during the late 19th century, and 111 indexed documents that include letters received by the Office of Indian Affairs, newspaper editorials, and government reports. It also includes the Allotment Data Collection. Allotment was a process by which the government allowed most of the land base left to the Indians in the West to fall into other hands by the latter half of the 19th century. These tables trace the redistribution of Indian lands through land acquisition and agricultural data from the 1870s to the 1910s.
Images of Native Americans, Bancroft Library at the U. of California, Berkeley
This site includes more than 60 items from rare books, pamphlets, journals, pulp magazines, newspapers, and original photographs, which reflect European interpretations of Native Americans, images of popular culture, literary and political observations, and artistic representations. The images include the renowned works of George Catlin and Edward S. Curtis, as well as lesser-known works, such as those of early 19th-century Russian artist-explorer Louis Choris.
George Catlin and His Indian Gallery, Smithsonian American Art Museum, Renwick Gallery
George Catlin, a lawyer turned painter, traveled throughout the American West in the early 19th century to chronicle the Native American experience. His paintings of the Plains Indians are the center of this virtual exhibit. From 1830 to 1836, Catlin visited more than 50 tribes from North Dakota to Oklahoma. His original Indian Gallery was designed to document the transformation of Native Americans and "rescue from oblivion" their customs and lifestyle. Thirty-three of Catlin's more than 400 paintings are presented in this virtual museum, including one of William Clark, the famous explorer of the Lewis and Clark expedition. A valuable resource for teaching about the Indian Removal of the 1830s, the transformation of the Western frontier, and the encounter of Anglo American and Native American cultures.
American Indians of the Pacific Northwest, American Memory and U. Washington Libraries
This archive includes more than 2,300 photographs and 7,700 pages of text illustrating the everyday lives of American Indians in the Northwest Coast and Plateau regions of the Pacific Northwest. The materials illustrate the American Indians' housing, clothing, crafts, transportation, education, employment, and other aspects of everyday life. Each item included in the collection is accompanied by information on the source, medium, repository, catalog information, and other descriptive notes of interest. The site also offers ten 2500-word essays authored by anthropologists on specific tribal groups and cross-cultural topics that help K-12 students and teachers understand and effectively use the sources in the collection. Also included are 14 maps of the featured regions and ten links to related American Memory exhibits and collections. It is ideal for students and teachers exploring the lives of Native Americans in the Pacific Northwest.
Early Images of Virginia Indians, Virginia Historical Society
An online exhibit featuring 18 images with interpretative material and an essay on interpreting historical images. The exhibit also includes useful information on John White's watercolors, Theodore de Bry's engravings, and John Smith's 1612 map of Virginia.
Lakota Winter Counts, Smithsonian National Museum of Natural History
An exhibit displaying, explaining, and interpreting the Lakota pictorial histories known as winter counts. The website features a searchable database of winter count images, a documentary about Lakota history and culture, video interviews with Lakota people, and a teacher's guide. Visitors can view images from ten winter counts and examine their symbols in detail by year with curator comments on individual symbols. The "Who Are the Lakota" section offers a historical overview of Lakota history in ten segments that include the Lakota and the Sioux people, Lakota origins, westward migration, horse-centered culture on the northern Great Plains, important conflicts and treaties, confinement to the Great Sioux Reservation, and subsequent land cessions. In addition to highlighting the winter counts, this site is an outstanding resource for both teaching and learning about the Lakota people and their culture, as well as discussing the role of Native Americans in westward expansion.
Edward S. Curtis's "The North American Indian," LOC American Memory, and Northwestern University Library
Presents all 2,226 photographs taken by Edward S. Curtis for his work The North American Indian. These striking images of North American tribes are considered some of the most significant representations of "the old time Indian, his dress, his ceremonies, his life and manners" ever produced. Each image is accompanied by comprehensive identifying data and Curtis's original captions. The voluminous collection and narrative are presented in 20 volumes, searchable by subject, 80 American Indian tribes, and seven geographic locations, including the Great Plains, Great Basin, Plateau Region, Southwest, California, Pacific Northwest, and Alaska. This site also features a 12-item bibliography and three scholarly essays (each between 2,000 and 4,000 words) discussing Curtis's methodology as an ethnographer, the significance of his work to Native peoples of North America, and his promotion of the 20th-century view that American Indians were a "vanishing race." Students will find the biographical timeline and map depicting the locations where Curtis photographed American Indian groups especially useful. Those interested in the Native American experience should also see the link to related online resources produced by Library of Congress and 11 other institutions.
The National Museum of the American Indian
The National Museum of the American Indian is the first national museum dedicated to the preservation, study, and exhibition of the life, languages, literature, history, and arts of Native Americans. Its extensive website features information on upcoming exhibitions, educational materials that accompany their exhibits, and one online exhibition on clothing and identity that focuses on women's dresses.
Virginia's First People: Past and Present, Prince William Network and Virginia DOE
A historical overview of Virginia’s Native Americans from pre-1600 to the present. The site offers 14 lesson plans, nine for elementary school teachers. Instructional resources include links to 29 related websites and a bibliography of 17 books. “Geography” includes links to seven maps of Virginia’s Indians and information on land and water usage, climate and vegetation, and economy and resource use. A cultural overview offers sections on artifacts, language, religion, government, economic systems, occupations, arts, housing, and clothing. The site also has a section on Virginia Indians today.
Early Images of Virginia’s Indians, Virginia Historical Society
An online exhibit featuring 18 images with interpretative material and an essay on interpreting historical images.
Werowocomoco Research Project, Werowocomoco Research Group
The village of Werowocomoco was the residence of the Algonquin chief Powhatan and the political center of the Powhatan chiefdom during the early 1600s. The Werowocomoco Research Group is studying the history and physical remains of the site. Though this site does not contain many primary sources itself, it does present lesson plans and links to outside resources.
Virginia’s Indians: Past and Present, James Madison University
This site “offers historical information, lesson plans, bibliographies and links to tribal home pages. The Powhatan Indians page provides information for younger readers on the tribe.”
Archive of Early American Images, John Carter Brown Library, Brown University
An archive of pictures of the colonial Americas from books printed or created in Europe between about 1492 and 1825. The database, still being compiled, currently contains 2,268 images and will eventually contain some 6,000 images. Image viewing software is available from the site. The visitor can browse the entire archive or search it by time period, geographical area, keyword, or subjects, including indigenous peoples, flora and fauna, artifacts, industry, human activities, geography, maps, city views and plans, and portraits.
Plymouth Colony Archive Project, Patricia Scott Deetz, Christopher Fennell, and J. Eric Deetz, University of Virginia
Presents a wealth of documents and analytical essays pertaining to the social history of Plymouth Colony from 1620 to 1691. Documents include 135 probates, 24 wills, and 12 texts containing laws and court cases on such subjects as land division, master-servant relations, sexual misconduct, and disputes involving Native Americans. In addition, the site provides approximately 80 biographical studies, research papers and topical articles that analyze "life ways" of 395 individuals who lived in the colony and offer theoretical views on the colony's legal structure, women's roles, vernacular house forms, and domestic violence, among other topics. Includes 19 maps or plans of the colony; approximately 50 photographs" seven lesson plans" and an extensive glossary of archaeological terms.
Virtual Jamestown, Crandall Shifflett, Virginia Center for Digital History
A work in progress, Virtual Jamestown is a good place to begin exploring the history of Virginia's first colonial settlement. This site includes 63 letters and first-hand accounts, available in original-spelling or modern-spelling versions; 100 public records, from census data to laws; 30 maps and images; and a sample of documents on labor contracts. The reference section includes a timeline extending from 1502 to the present, narratives by prominent historians, links to 15 related sites, and a bibliography of 20 primary and secondary sources.
Do History-Martha Ballard's Diary Online, Harvard University
This interactive website explores the remarkable 18th-century diary of Maine midwife Martha Ballard. It offers two versions of the 1400-page diary, facsimile and transcribed full-text; the latter is searchable by keyword and date. A searchable archive offers 300 documents, images, and maps on such topics as Ballard's life, midwifery, birth, medical information, religion, and Maine history. A timeline traces Maine's history from the first attempt to settle the coastline in 1607, through Ballard's lifetime (1735-1812), to the present. Interactive exercises offer students the opportunity to transcribe and "decode" portions of the diary, and a "Magic Lens" makes it appear as if Ballard's handwriting is instantly transcribed. The site is especially useful for research on genealogy, midwifery and herbal medicine, as well as for using primary sources about daily life in colonial America.
Probing the Past, Center for History and New Media (GMU) and Gunston Hall Plantation
Presenting 325 probate inventories, this website provides a unique window into daily life in Virginia and Maryland between 1740 and 1810. In this time period, county courts appointed appraisers, local men, to visit an estate after its owner died, list what was there, and estimate its value. These inventories are a sample from the region at this time, and are all digitized, transcribed, and searchable. For more detailed information on the role of material culture in colonial life, the site's Interpreting section presents interviews with two scholars who use probate records to discuss topics such as slavery and slave life, credit and debt, and women and property ownership. Three detailed lesson plans are also available, providing suggestions for incorporating these rich sources into classroom learning.
Salem Witch Trials: Documentary Archive and Transcription Project, Benjamin Ray (UVA)
Of the many websites dealing with the Salem Witch trials of 1692, this one is among the most useful and thorough. It provides full-text versions of the three-volume, verbatim Salem Witch trial transcripts, an extensive contemporary narrative of the trials, and full-text pamphlets and excerpts of sermons by Cotton Mather, Robert Calef, and Thomas Maule. The site also offers four full-text rare books, written in the late-17th and early-18th centuries about the witchcraft scare, and five contemporary maps of Salem and nearby villages. Additionally, the site also provides access to more than 500 documents from the collections archives in Massachusetts. This site is a rich resource for those who wish to conduct research on the Salem witch hysteria.
Colonial Connecticut Records, 1636-1776, University of Connecticut Libraries
A scanned and partially searchable version of the 15-volume Public Records of the Colony of Connecticut, from April 1636 to October 1776, originally published from 1850 to 1890. Users can search documents by date, volume, and page number. Each of the 15 volumes, which cover successive time periods, includes alphabetical hyperlinked subject terms that users may browse, and also provides access by type of material: charters, documents, inventories, laws, letters, and court proceedings. The site offers historians and students a wealth of accessible material on politics, legal matters, Indian affairs, military actions, social concerns, agriculture, religion, and other aspects of early Connecticut history.
Leslie Brock Center for the Study of Colonial Currency, Leslie Brock (UVA)
During the colonial period, each colony issued its own paper money, which caused considerable conflict with Britain in the 18th century. This site contains five full-text 18th-century pamphlets on colonial economic and currency issues from 1720 to 1749; ten other contemporary writings about the economic situation in the colonies, including sermons, currency acts, and letters to Britain's Board of Trade, the governing body for colonial economic issues. The site also offers one article and excerpts from a book by scholars of colonial economy. There are links to ten tables from Brock's book, Colonial Currency, Prices, and Exchange Rates, as well as a very thorough bibliography of over 70 scholarly works on colonial economies. This is an ideal source for teaching and researching the colonial economies and money in 18th-century America.
George Washington: A National Treasure, Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery
This exhibit focuses on the Lansdowne portrait of George Washington, painted by Gilbert Stuart in 1796. Users may explore this portrait through three different filters: symbolic, biographic, or artistic. Each filter provides background information, and offers an interpretation of each element. In addition, the site contains biographical information on Washington’s life, a teacher’s guide with nine lesson plans on Washington and a chronology of his life, and a teaching section that asks students to find follow clues to locate missing parts of the portrait.
Rediscovering George Washington, PBS
Introduces users to the life of George Washington. An Introduction summarizes Washington’s life and career. Timeline is a chronology of the milestones in his life. The Multimedia Room includes 11 audio clips of scholars discussing Washington’s importance. The site contains a modest collection of 150 Washington letters and the Book of Etiquette Washington transcribed when he was 16 years old. The 10 Lesson Plans (for grades 9–12) are very detailed.
Mount Vernon, Mount Vernon Ladies’ Association
Useful introduction to the life and home of Washington, including a virtual tour of the Mt. Vernon mansion. An Educational Resources section offers a fifth-grade lesson plan, complete with trivia about Washington, excerpts from Rules on Civility, and anecdotes from his military career and presidency; a 2000-word essay on Washington’s attitude toward slavery and information on his slaves’ lives, including links to a facsimile copy of Washington’s 1798 slave census and 18 paintings and artifacts depicting the everyday lives of Mt. Vernon’s slaves.
The Writings of George Washington from the Original Manuscript Sources: 1745–1799, University of Virginia Library
A valuable resource for studying the Revolutionary Era. Materials include 17,500 letters and documents written by Washington between 1749 and 1799, and a powerful search feature that allows users to limit searches by recipient and year.
George Washington Papers, 1741–1799, American Memory, Library of Congress
This collection of approximately 65,000 documents (including correspondence, letterbooks, commonplace books, diaries, journals, financial account books, military records, reports, and notes) written by or to George Washington is the largest collection of original Washington documents in the world. The site includes a number of helpful features: a timeline with annotations to relevant documents; a 1,500-word essay on Washington’s letterbooks; an essay entitled “Creating the American Nation”; an 8,500-word essay on his diaries; an 11,500-word essay on the publication history of Washington’s papers; and a 4,500-word essay on Washington’s career as a surveyor and mapmaker.
Our Documents, NARA, National History Day, and USA Freedom Corps
A cooperative effort, this website is an online repository of 100 milestone primary documents in American history. The first document is the Richard Henry Lee Resolution of June 7, 1776, proposing independence for the American colonies. The last is the Voting Rights Act of 1965. In between, visitors will find Eli Whitney's 1794 cotton gin patent, the 1862 Pacific Railway Act, and the 1896 Plessy vs. Ferguson ruling. There is a full-page scan and transcription of each document. In addition to the chronological list of 100 documents, the site includes a "People's Vote" top-ten list. Of the 100 documents, Americans voted the Declaration of Independence number one, while the 1935 Social Security Act came in last. The site offers resource tools for educators and librarians on how to integrate the milestone documents into the classroom.
Charters of Freedom, NARA
This site features three documents central to early U.S. history: the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution of the United States, and the Bill of Rights. Transcriptions of all three documents are accompanied by high-resolution images of the originals. The site also includes supporting materials, such as the 1823 William J. Stone engraving. Several scholarly articles (approximately 8,000 words each) provide further context. There is also extensive information on the creation of the documents, and the impact they have had on American society.
Hypertext on American History, University Groningen (Netherlands)
This site provides more than 3,000 documents pertaining to United States history, primarily from the colonial period to the end of the 19th century. Though this site provides no contextualization, it is useful for locating commonly used documents.
Congressional Documents and Debates, 1774–1873, American Memory, Library of Congress
This site offers records and acts of Congress from the Journals of the Continental Congress through The Congressional Globe, which ceased publication with the 42nd Congress in 1873. An excellent resource for Antebellum and Reconstruction politics.
Drafting the Documents of Independence, Library of Congress
Eight documents and prints relating to the Declaration of Independence are presented on this site, including a fragment of the earliest known version and Thomas Jefferson’s “original Rough draught” with changes by John Adams, Benjamin Franklin, and others. This site is well-organized and successfully tracks the Declaration’s development and effect.
American Revolution and Early Republic
American Revolution Digital Learning Project, New York Historical Society
This website combines exhibitions, documents, and objects for exploring the American Revolution. The site offers four online exhibitions: "Independence and Its Enemies in New York," "Revolutionary Dresscode," "Road to the American Revolution," and "Women During the American Revolutionary War" (including women on the homefront, camp followers, and famous women). It also presents more than 1,900 museum objects, including clothing and fashion, tools and equipment (artist, military, household), silver, and toys; more than 1,400 documents, including broadsides, letters, muster sheets and payrolls, newspapers, petitions, and political cartoons; more than 350 prints; and more than 220 maps. Two video lectures and six essays by scholars of the American Revolution and the early republic are also available. Finally, teacher worksheets, eight lesson plans, and ten guides to student activities offer suggestions on how to guide students through the process of reading various types of primary documents.
The American Revolution and Its Era: Maps and Charts of North America and the Indies, 1750-1789
This site records the mapping of North America and the Caribbean from 1750 to 1789 through images of more than 500 maps. The online collection allows researchers to compare editions, styles, and techniques of mapmakers from Great Britain, France, Germany, Spain, Holland, Italy, and the United States, and to follow the development of specific maps from the manuscript sketch to the finished, printed version. Each image is accompanied by descriptive notes (100-150 words). The site also includes a 1500-word essay on mapmaking during the American Revolutionary era and links to 12 other sites containing related materials. Researchers can browse this site by geographic location, subject, creator, and title, and can search the site by keyword. This site is ideal for students and teachers interested in mapmaking in the 18th century and in exploring how maps illustrate early American culture.
A Brush With History: Paintings from the National Portrait Gallery, Smithsonian
Visitors to this site can view 76 portraits of prominent Americans drawn from the Gallery’s collections. Paintings are arranged in chronological order, from the 1720s to the 1990s. Featured artists include famous 18th- and 19th-century portraitists Gilbert Stuart and John Singer Sargent, as well as more abstract 20th-century artists like Marguerite Zorath. A brief biography accompanies each portrait, along with the artist’s name (if known), the year painted, the medium, and acquisition information.
Thomas Jefferson Digital Archive, Univ. of Virginia Library
Provides more than 1,700 texts—correspondence, books, addresses, and a variety of public papers—written by or to Thomas Jefferson. The site also includes a biography of Jefferson written in 1834, eight years after his death. The Jeffersonian Cyclopedia, published in 1900, organizes more than 9,000 quotes according to theme and other categories. A collection of 2,700 excerpts from Jefferson’s writings present his political philosophy.
Journals of the Lewis and Clark Expedition, University of Nebraska Press; Center for Great Plains Studies; UNL Libraries
This well-designed site presents the “celebrated Nebraska edition of the Lewis and Clark journals,” edited by Gary E. Moulton. The site provides the complete text of all the journals from the 1803 to 1806 expedition, as well as introductions, prefaces, and sources. There are five scholarly essays about the expedition and an essay with short profiles of expedition members. An image gallery offers more than 46 images of pages from the journals, 26 images of people and places, and 50 images of plants and animals encountered on the expedition, including 12 drawings from the journals. There are 12 explanatory maps and nine maps from the journals.
The Hartford Black History Project, Hartford Black History Project
Two exhibits on black history in Hartford, Connecticut. "A Struggle from the Start" charts stages in the life of the Hartford African American community from 1638 to 1920, including slavery, black codes, free blacks, black governors, and black community institutions. A second exhibit presents approximately 80 photographs from Hartford's African American community covering the years 1870 to the 1970s.
Archiving Early America, Don Vitale
Presents about 50 facsimile reproductions and transcriptions of original documents, newspapers, books, autobiographies, biographies, portraits, and maps from the 18th and early 19th centuries. Examples include the Declaration of Independence, the Jay Treaty, George Washington's journal of his trip to the Ohio Valley, published in the 1754 Maryland Gazette, and 15 contemporary obituaries of well-known figures. Portraits include 24 statesmen and 12 "notable women." Includes an "Early American Digital Library" from which visitors can view more than 200 digital images from early American engravings of people, places, and events (full-size images are available for purchase). Created by a collector of early Americana
Continental Congress and the Constitutional Convention, LOC American Memory.
The Continental Congress Broadside Collection (253 titles) and the Constitutional Convention Broadside Collection (21 titles) contain 274 documents relating to the work of Congress and the drafting and ratification of the Constitution. Items include extracts of the journals of Congress, resolutions, proclamations, committee reports, treaties, and early printed versions of the United States Constitution and the Declaration of Independence. The documents are presented as page images and as text, and are keyword searchable. An excellent resource on the constitutional era and its popular politics.
19th Century American Children and What They Read, Pat Pflieger
This site offers letters, adoption advertisements, contemporary articles for and about children, 30 books about childhood in the 19th century, scrapbooks, penmanship books, articles from the children’s magazine Museum, 34 articles on children and reading, and the full text of 23 books, including the American Spelling Book and grammar primers. The site also includes seven analytical essays written by modern scholars. A “puzzle drawer” includes word games played by 19th-century children that 21st-century users may find amusing and educational.
Uncle Tom's Cabin and American Culture, Stephen Rail, University of Virginia
This well-designed site explores Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin “as an American cultural phenomenon.” It provides dozens of texts, songs, and images from the various genres Stowe drew upon, Stowe’s preface, multiple versions of the text, playable songs from the novel, Stowe’s defense against criticism, 12 reviews, more than 100 articles and notes, 20 responses from African Americans, dozens of pro-slavery responses, children’s books, songs, games, and theatrical versions. Three interpretive exhibits challenge students to explore how slavery and race were defined and redefined as well as how the character of Topsy was created and re-created, assuming a range of political and social meanings.
Exploring Amistad: Race and the Boundaries of Freedom in Maritime Antebellum America, Mystic Seaport Museum
Presents more than 500 primary documents relating to the 1839Š1842 revolt of enslaved Africans aboard the schooner Amistad, their legal struggles in the United States, and the multifaceted cultural and social dimensions of their case. The site features a searchable library that contains 32 items from personal papers, 33 legal decisions and arguments, 18 selections from the "popular media," including pamphlets, journal articles, and reports; 103 government publications, 28 images, 11 maps, and 310 newspaper articles and editorials. Provides a wealth of materials for students of slavery, race, politics, and print culture in antebellum America.
True and Candid Compositions: The Lives and Writings of Antebellum Students at the University of North Carolina, UNC Library
This site offers 121 edited documents written by students at the University of North Carolina between 1795 and 1868. Documents include letters, speeches, diary excerpts, compositions, and poems. The collection can be explored through 15 essays divided into six chapters, each covering a different period with links to the associated primary documents.
The Time of the Lincolns, PBS Online, WGBH, American Experience
Organized into five topical sectionsPartisan Politics; Slavery & Freedom; A Rising Nation; Americans at War; and A Woman-s World-the site offers more than 30 textual documents-including book excerpts, newspaper articles, poems, lectures, letters, and diaries. Visitors will also find more than 50 photographs, maps, and political cartoons. Valuable as an introduction for students to important social, political, and cultural aspects of life in antebellum America and during the Civil War.
Images of African Americans from the 19th Century, New York Public Library
http://digital.nypl.org/schomburg/images_aa19/ This site contains roughly 500 images depicting the social, political, and cultural worlds of African Americans. The site can be searched through 17 subject categories, such as family, labor, Civil War, slavery, social life and customs, and portraits. This site offers a keyword search and is ideal for researching African American and 19th-century history.
Slaves and the Courts, 1740-1860, American Memory, Library of Congress
Provides published materials on legal aspects of slavery. Most of the pamphlets and books pertain to American cases in the 19th century. Includes documents on the slave trade, slave codes, the Fugitive Slave Law, slave insurrections, and courtroom proceedings from famous trials such as the Amistad case, the Denmark Vesey conspiracy trial, and trials of noted abolitionists John Brown and William Lloyd Garrison.
Samuel J. May Anti-Slavery Collection, Cornell University Library
This site features one of the richest collections of anti-slavery and Civil War materials in the world. The collection consists of more than 10,000 pamphlets, leaflets, broadsides, newsletters from local and regional anti-slavery societies, sermons, essays, and arguments for and against slavery. Materials date from the 18th to the 19th centuries and cover slavery in the United States and the West Indies, the slave trade, and emancipation. Includes more than 70 items from or about Virginians.
Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers’ Project, 1936–1938, American Memory, Library of Congress
This gold mine of information on the history of slavery from those who lived as slaves offers 2,300 first person accounts of slavery and 500 black and white photographs of former slaves. The site also includes a 3000-word introductory essay on the significance of slave narratives.
North American Slave Narratives, Beginnings to 1920, William Andrews, UNC Chapel Hill
Offers 230 fulltext documents on the lives of American slaves, including all knownAfro-toAfro-be published slave narratives and many published biographies of slaves. Users can also view images of the covers, spines, title pages, and versos of title pages. Accessible through alphabetical and chronological listings. The documents have been indexed by subject, but subject searching brings up additional materials included in other collections in the University of North CarolinaÕs Afro"Documenting the American SouthAfro" parent site. Provides a 2,200Afro-word introductory essay. Of great value to those studying the history of American slavery, the South, AfricanAfro-American culture, and literary properties of slave narratives.
The Underground Railroad, National Geographic
This interactive site places visitors in the shoes of a Maryland slave pondering escape to Canada in 1850. If they choose to escape, they are led into one of the Underground Railroad escape routes into Canada. Along the way they are introduced to several prominent abolitionists such as Harriet Tubman, Quaker businessman Thomas Garrett, and escaped slave Frederick Douglass. The site also includes a map of Underground Railroad routes, a timeline of African slavery in the New World from 1500 to 1865, and portraits and brief biographies of 12 major figures in the Underground Railroad. A link to classroom ideas provides nine class projects for high school students. There are also links to seven related websites and a bibliography of 18 scholarly works.
Geography of Slavery in Virginia, Virginia Center for Digital History and Thomas Costa, University of Virginia College at Wise
Provides full transcriptions and images of more than 2,400 newspaper advertisements regarding runaway slaves, mostly from the Williamsburg Virginia Gazette, between 1736 and 1777. Includes ads placed by owners and overseers for runaways as well as ads for captured or suspected runaway slaves placed by sheriffs and other governmental officials. In addition, the site’s creators have included ads for runaway servants, sailors, and military deserters, to offer “a unique look at the lower orders in 18th-century Virginia.” Searchable by any words appearing in ads. Users can click on the name of a slave within an ad to find links to all other ads listing that name. The site also provides approximately 40 links to related primary material—including letters, laws, court documents, planters’ records, and literature — as well as three K-12 teaching guides using the ads. A valuable source for those studying slave culture, Virginia society in the 18th century, and the use of print culture to support the institution of slavery.
Afro-Louisiana History and Genealogy, 1718-1820, UNC, Chapel Hill
This site provides detailed data on more than 100,000 slaves and free blacks in Louisiana from 1718 to 1820. Users can search by name of slave, masterÕs name, gender, epoch, racial designation, plantation location, and place of origin. Information was compiled from documents created when slaves arrived by ship, were bought and sold, were reported as runaways, testified in court cases, were manumitted, and at the death of masters.
Eye of the Storm, Michael Johnson, Adam Stoltman, Alan Dorow, Journal E
Presents more than 500 watercolor drawings and maps by Union Army Private Knox Sneden, depicting battle scenes, camp life, and maps. Four presentations depict particular incidents Sneden witnessed.
A Civil War Soldier in the Wild Cat Regiment: Selections From the Tilton C. Reynolds Papers, American Memory, Library of Congress
This collection offers a unique perspective on the lives of a Union soldier and his family. The selected letters lend insight into the wartime dynamics of the Reynolds family, and their words reveal how family members in Reynolds'; regiment looked after him, announced his capture, and gave advice. The letters also describe the daily life of a Union soldier, touching on such topics as food, clothing, shelter, health, and punishment. Soldiers' feelings, views on slavery and the election of 1864, as well as ReynoldsÕ account of seeing President and Mrs. Lincoln can all be found in this collection. The site also features two Special Presentations: "Timeline: History of the 105th Regiment of Pennsylvania Volunteers, 1861-1865" and one on the Reynolds family.
Images of Battle: Selected Civil War Letters, University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill
This site reproduces 10 letters by soldiers at the battlefront of the Civil War between April 1861 and April 1865. The letters, written by both Union and Confederates, describe battle conditions at Fort Sumter (SC), Manassas (VA), Hilton Head (SC), Frederick (MD), Frederickburg (VA), and other important locations. Taken from the Southern Historical Collection at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, the letters are accompanied by illustrations and short captions. The site also includes eight links to Civil War resources.
Crisis at Fort Sumter, Richard B. Latner, Tulane University
http://www.tulane.edu/~sumter/ This interactive website provides documents, essays, and questions about the events leading up to the Confederate attack on Fort Sumter in 1861 and places the events within a broader context of secession and southern independence. There are nine chronological sections and students must make decisions at five "critical junctures," soliciting advice from official and unofficial advisors. Students can compare their choices with Lincoln's, and a commentary section challenges students to explore multiple interpretations of events.
Civil War Richmond, Michael D. Gorman
This research project was designed to collect primary sources related to Richmond, Virginia, during the Civil War. It includes written accounts, photographs, maps, information on Richmond hospitals and prisons, a summary of Civil war events in Richmond, and information on sites important to the Civil War history of Richmond.
Civil War Images of Northern Virginia, George Mason University Special Collections
Presents 24 images of Northern Virginia sites during the Civil War—the area was occupied at times by both fighting forces—and annotations of 65 additional prints culled mostly from the Illustrated London News, Frank Leslie’s Illustrated Newspaper, and Harper’s Weekly. Includes maps, engraving, and other types of prints, as well as an introductory essay of 1,000 words and a 38-title bibliography.
The Ground Beneath Our Feet: Reconfiguring Virginia, University of Virginia
This site seeks to “explore the dimensions of the Virginia debates on secession in 1860-61 and the course of West Virginia’s creation. It examines the political and legal issues at stake and Virginians' reactions to them, and provides newspaper, letters and documents, maps, images, and a teaching section with 12 ideas for class discussions based on the site's materials.
Selected Civil War Photographs, American Memory, Library of Congress
This collection offers 1,118 photographs (more than 540 from Virginia) depicting Civil War military personnel, preparations for battle, and the aftermath of battles in the main eastern theater
and in the west, in addition to Federal Navy and Atlantic seaborne expeditions against the Confederacy. The site also includes portraits of Confederate and Union officers and enlisted men and photographs of Washington, D.C., during the war. The presentation “Time Line of the Civil War” places images in historical context. “Does the Camera Ever Lie” demonstrates the constructed nature of images, showing that photographers sometimes rearranged elements of their images to achieve a more controlled effect.
The Crisis of the Union, Schoenberg Center, University of Pennsylvania
This archive contains material related to “the causes, conduct, and consequences of the U.S. Civil War,” many of which relate to Abolition. The collection contains more than 220 books, broadsides, cartoons, pamphlets, and other printed material from 1830 to 1880. Visitors may browse issues of William Lloyd Garrison’s The Liberator, peruse the 1852 Proceedings of the Democratic National Convention, or view dozens of Thomas Nast cartoons. Finally, visitors can also search the entire archive by keyword, subject, graphic element, or date.
Civil War Women, Digital Scriptorium, Duke University
These Civil War-era documents relate to three American women of diverse backgrounds and political persuasions. These women are Rose O'Neal Greenhow, a Confederate spy and Washington socialite; Sarah E. Thompson, who organized Union sympathizers near her home in Greenville, Tennessee; and 16-year-old Alice Williamson, a Gallatin, Tennessee, schoolgirl who kept a diary about the Union occupation of her town.
Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in the American Civil War, University of Virginia
http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/vshadow/ A massive, searchable archive with thousands of pages of maps, images, letters, diaries, newspapers, and church, agricultural, military, and public records-all relating to two communities (Staunton, Virginia, and Chambersburg, Pennsylvania) before, during, and after the Civil War.
Reconstruction and Jim Crow
Freedmen’s Bureau Online, Christine’s Geneology Websites, Inc.
The Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen, and Abandoned Lands, also known as the Freedmen’s Bureau, was established by the War Department in 1865 to supervise all relief and education activities for refugees and freedmen after the Civil War. The Bureau was responsible for issuing rations, clothing, and medicine, and it also had custody of confiscated lands in the former Confederate States. This site contains an extensive collection of Freedmen’s Bureau records and reports gathered by Christine Charity, a genealogist, to aid other family history and historical research. Includes reports, links to records and indexes of labor contracts between freedmen and planters, links to marriage records of freedmen, and more than 100 miscellaneous state record items concerning freedmen. There are nearly 100 documents from Reconstruction in Virginia.
Reconstruction: The Second Civil War, Public Broadcasting System
An excellent website with numerous resources for studying Reconstruction. On the site is a general timeline and overall history of the period, including an interactive and detailed state-by-state map detailing life in 1870 America. Numerous primary sources, photographs, historical objects, and documentary features are available to peruse.
HarpWeek: Explore History, John Adler
This collection of exhibits presents free access to a wealth of texts and images taken from Harper’s on a variety of subjects (supporting the standards of learning) dealing with 19th-century American political and social history. Subjects include “Presidential Elections” offering 320 annotated political cartoons, the 13th, 14th, and 15th Amendments, and political prints and cartoons. Each includes an introduction, a timeline, biographies, and short essays on aspects of the topic.
Race & Place: An African-American Community in the Jim Crow South: Charlottesville, VA, Virginia Center for Digital History and Carter G. Woodson Institute
This archive addresses Jim Crow, or racial segregation, laws from the late 1880s until the mid-20th century focusing on the town of Charlottesville, Virginia. Materials include images, maps, census databases, city records, political materials, personal papers, and newspaper articles. The theme is the connection of race with place in understanding the lives of African Americans in the segregated South. There are audio files from more than 35 oral history interviews, and more than 1,000 transcribed articles from or about Charlottesville or Albemarle County from two major African-American newspapers.
African American Sheet Music, 1850-1920, LOC American Memory and Brown U.
This collection presents 1,305 pieces of sheet music composed by and about African Americans, ranging chronologically from antebellum minstrel shows to early 20th-century African American musical comedies. Includes works by renowned black composers and lyricists, such as James A. Bland, Will Marion Cook, Paul Laurence Dunbar, Bert Williams, George Walker, Alex Rogers, Jesse A. Shipp, Bob Cole, and James Weldon Johnson. A "Special Presentation: The Development of an African-American Musical Theatre, 1865-1910" provides a chronology. In addition, sheet music can be studied to examine racial depictions, both visually, on sheet music covers, and in lyrics; styles of music, such as ragtime, jazz, and spirituals; and a variety of topics of interest to popular audiences, including gender relations, urbanization, and wars. Much of the material is disturbing due to its heavy dependence on racial caricatures; however, students can gain insight into racial attitudes through an informed use of this site.
The Jackson Davis Collection of African American Educational Photographs, University of Virginia Special Collections.
http://www.lib.virginia.edu/small/collections/jdavis/ These photographs from the early 20th century show conditions of African American schools in the south. They "provide a unique view of southern education during the first half of the 20th century."
Jim Crow Museum of Racist Memorabilia, Dr. David Pilgrim, Ferris State University
Envisioned as an educational resource for scholars and students, this site contains approximately 4,000 images, including sheet music, ashtrays, children's book covers, salt and pepper shakers, postcards, dolls, and matchbooks. There are 11 scholarly essays providing historical context for the anti-black caricatures that include extensive footnotes citing primary, secondary, and online sources. The exhibit includes a radio interview with Dr. Pilgrim, along with links to 13 scholarly essays and relevant newspaper articles.
The History of Jim Crow, New York Life Insurance
This online companion to The Rise and Fall of Jim Crow, a four-part television series, tells the story of the African American struggle for freedom during the era of segregation. The site offers six historical essays and five themed essays focusing on creating, surviving, resisting, escaping, and transcending Jim Crow oppression from the late-19th-century to the Civil Rights movement. There are shorter essays on topics such as Jackie Robinson and the lynching of Emmett Till and 10 interactive maps. The site offers more than 25 lesson plans, an interactive encyclopedia, historical photographs, and first-hand narratives.
Remembering Jim Crow, American RadioWorks
A companion to the NPR radio documentary on segregated life in the South, this site presents audio excerpts and photographs addressing social and cultural aspects of segregation, black community life, and black resistance as well as different reflections on Jim Crow by African Americans and whites.
Theodore Roosevelt: His Life and Times on Film, American Memory, Library of Congress
This site offers 104 films depicting events in Roosevelt’s life, from the Spanish-American War in 1898 to his death in 1919. The films include scenes of Roosevelt with world figures, politicians, monarchs, friends, and family members. Special presentations on this site include: a film chronology offering a timeline with outlines of each period in Roosevelt’s life covered in film; a text-based timeline from Roosevelt’s birth in 1858 to his death in 1919; four sound recordings that Roosevelt made for the Edison company in 1912; and an image of “Theodore Roosevelt: The Picture Man,” an article from a 1910 moving picturemagazine.
Pluralism and Unity, David Bailey, Michigan State University, and David Halsted, H-Net
Presents a wide array of materials that explore pluralism and unity in early 20th-century American thought and life. The site links to major sites on such topics as ethics, politics, culture, sociology, anthropology, religion, economics, imperialism, hegemony, world systems theory, League of Nations, Jim Crow laws, eugenics, the Niagara Movement, NAACP, KKK, unions, strikes, modernism, the genteel tradition, localism, and ragtime. It also outlines the perspectives of important public figures of the era.
Temperance and Prohibition, K. Austin Kerr, Ohio State University
Organized local and national campaigns to reduce the drinking of alcohol in the United States are documented in this site, along with efforts of those opposing Prohibition laws. Includes dozens of contemporary images, speeches, newspaper and journal articles, advertisements, reports, statistical charts, and accounts. Specific topics include the Woman’s Crusade of 1873–74, the Anti-Saloon League, the Ohio Dry Campaign of 1918, the evolution of the brewing industry, and Prohibition in the 1920s.
Evolution of the Conservation Movement, 1850–1920, American Memory, Library of Congress
This site documents the formation of the movement to conserve and protect America’s natural heritage through published works, manuscript documents, images, and motion picture footage. Site visitors can view such holdings as 20 Alfred Bierstadt paintings, period travel literature, a photographic record of Yosemite, and Congressional acts regarding conservation and the establishment of national parks. The site provides an annotated chronology of selected events in the development of the conservation movement, with links to pertinent documents and images.
Earliest Voices: A Gallery from the Vincent Voice Library, Michigan State University Department of History, Vincent Voice Library, and MATRIX
A collection of 19 audio clips of speeches recorded by seven turn-of-the-century public figures—William Jennings Bryan, Eugene V. Debs, Thomas Edison, Samuel Gompers, William McKinley, William Howard Taft, and Booker T. Washington. The clips last between one and seven minutes each; all but one were made between 1900 and 1920. Subjects of the speeches include politics, reform, socialism, isolationism, trusts, the gold standard, U.S. military force, labor issues, and race relations. The site includes Votes for Women: Selections from the National American Woman Suffrage Association Collection, 1848–1921, American Memory, Library of Congress.
Women of Protest: Photographs from the Records of the National Woman's Party, LOC American Memory
This combined archive and exhibit offers a selection of 448 photographs from the Library's National Woman's Party (NWP) collection that "document the National Woman's Party's push for ratification of the 19th Amendment as well as its later campaign for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment." Photographs span the years 1875 to 1938, but most date from 1913 to 1922. Visitors can browse photographs by title or subject or search the descriptive information. The site has a photo gallery of more than 50 photographs depicting NWP activists who were arrested and imprisoned for their role in suffrage protests.
Votes for Women: Selections from the National American Woman Suffrage Association Collection, 1848-1921, American Memory, Library of Congress
This site consists of 167 books, pamphlets, handbooks, reports, speeches, and other artifacts totaling some 10,000 pages dealing with the suffrage movement in America. Much of the larger collection was donated by Carrie Chapman Catt, the Association’s longtime president. Also included are works from the libraries of some of the organization’s officers and members, including Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, Lucy Stone, Alice Stone Blackwell, Julia Ward Howe, Elizabeth Smith Miller, and Mary A. Livermore. Formed in 1890, NAWSA secured the passage of the 19th Amendment in 1920 through a series of well-organized state campaigns.
Alcohol, Temperance, and Prohibition, Brown University Library
This archive presents more than 1,800 broadsides, sheet music, pamphlets, and government publications related to the temperance movement and prohibition. Materials include items from the period leading up to prohibition as well as the prohibition era itself, ending with the passage of the 21st amendment in 1933. A historical essay, "Temperance and Prohibition Era Propaganda: A Study in Rhetoric" by Leah Rae Berk is available. A small, but useful, site with a wide range of primary source material for researching the history of the prohibition movement, temperance, or alcoholism.
Urbanization and Modernization
Rarely Seen Richmond: Early 20th-century Richmond As Seen Through Vintage Postcards Special Collections and Archives, James Branch Cabell Library
A searchable database of Richmond postcards, most dating from 1900 to 1930.
Electrification, University of Virginia
Electric power transformed the lives of rural Virginians. In addition to an essay on rural electrification in Virginia, this site includes five newspaper articles from 1937-1938 editions of the RichmondTimes-Dispatch, a timeline, 14 images, and questions for class discussion.
Urban Experience in Chicago: Hull-House and Its Neighborhoods, 1889–1963, University of Illinois at Chicago; Jane Addams Hull-House Museum
This site offers more than 700 items for exploring the settlement house aspect of Progressive era reform—including articles, letters, memoirs, reports, maps, and photographs. Materials are embedded within a clear historical narrative that illuminates the life of Jane Addams and the history and legacy of Chicago’s Hull House. The site covers more than 70 topics on life at Hull House, Progressive reform, immigration, and the effects and consequences of urbanization.
Depression Era and World War II
New Deal Network, Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt Institute and Institute for Learning Technologies, Teachers College, Columbia University
A database of more than 20,000 items relating to the New Deal. A "Document Library" contains more than 900 newspaper and journal articles, speeches, letters, reports, advertisements, and other textual materials, treating a broad array of subjects relevant to the period's social, cultural, political, and economic history, while placing special emphasis on New Deal relief agencies and issues relating to labor, education, agriculture, the Supreme Court, and African Americans. The "Photo Gallery" includes more than 5,000 images. Of great value for teachers, students, and researchers interested in the social history of the New Deal era.
American Life Histories: Manuscripts from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1940, LOC American Memory
This site features approximately 2,900 life histories from 1936Š1940 written by the staff of the Folklore Project of the Federal Writers' Project for the U.S. Works Progress (later Work Projects) Administration (WPA). Documents represent the work of more than 300 writers from 24 states. The histories, in the form of drafts and revisions, vary from narrative to dialogue, report, or case history. A typical history describes an informant's family, education, income, occupation, political views, religion and mores, medical needs, diet, and other observations on society and culture. This multifaceted collection provides materials for teaching subjects such as slavery and 19th-century American folk cultures as well as social history of the Great Depression.
FDR Cartoon Archive, Niskayuna High School, New York
A continuing project of high school history and science classes, this site presents thousands of political cartoons concerning the presidency of Franklin D. Roosevelt. Selected from the collection at the Hyde Park Presidential Library of Basil O'Conner-Roosevelt's New York City law partnerthe materials are arranged into eight subject categories and often include brief background essays and questions designed to prompt further inquiries. Periods currently emphasized include 1932, "The Road to Pennsylvania Avenue"; 1937, "The Supreme Court"; and 1943, "The War Years." Well-conceived and executed, the site also gives the texts of Roosevelt's inaugural addresses and a page of teacher resources and suggested projects.
America from the Great Depression to World War II: Photographs from the FSA-OWI, 1935-1945, LOC American Memory
This site features more than 160,000 images taken by government photographers with the Farm Security Administration (FSA) and the Office of War Information (OWI) during the New Deal and World War II eras. These images document the ravages of the Great Depression on farmers, scenes of everyday life in small towns and cities, and, in later years, mobilization campaigns for World War II. This site includes approximately 1,600 color photographs.
U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum
Introduces the activities of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, located in Washington, DC, and its important collections, in addition to presenting interactive exhibitions and providing resources for study of the Holocaust and related subjects. The site is composed of five sections: education, research, history, remembrance, and conscience. The history section contains the most online content, including images, essays, and documents on 22 subjects such as anti-semitism, refugees, pogroms, extermination camps, and resistance; and 13 exhibitions of documents, photographs, audio and video files, activities, and explanatory texts. An invaluable site for students and teachers as an introduction to Holocaust-related subjects, and for scholars as a resource for further studies.
The Perilous Fight: America's World War II in Color, PBS
A complement to the four-hour PBS television series, this site presents unseen footage of World War II, the first war recorded primarily on color film. It brings the wartime experience of Americans on the battlefield and homefront vividly to life through original color film clips and photographs. The site is divided into four main areas, including Battlefield, Psychology of War, the Home Front, and Social Aspects. Each section allows visitors to navigate through the different subtopics, read excerpts from diaries and letters, view nearly 250 photographs available for the first time, and watch rare color film clips of the period. Visitors will also find an interactive timeline, essays on rediscovering the film footage, and a teaching guide for educators.
Pictures of World War II, National Archives
This archive offers 202 photographs depicting the activities of Americans during World War II. They represent all aspects of wartime preparation, from military training to combat and support services, as well as the homefront activities of civilians and war agencies. Images include leaders like Franklin D. Roosevelt, General Dwight Eisenhower, and Adolph Hitler, as well as posters from homefront rationing and war bond campaigns, Rosie the Riveter posters, combat photographs of invasions and scouting missions, and images of entertainers visiting the troops. This site is ideal for those interested in illustrating reports or lectures on American contributions to World War II.
Powers of Persuasion: Poster Art from World War II, National Archives
This site examines poster art as a method of persuasion during World War II. Featuring 33 posters and one audio clipthe song "Any Bonds Today?"the materials are divided into two sections. The first focuses on themes of "patriotism, confidence, and a patriotic outlook." The second section presents posters that attempted to foster "feelings of suspicion, fear, and even hate," a distinctly different strategy of propaganda. The materials are contextualized by background essays. Although limited in number, the site is valuable for studying wartime depictions of gender and race, as well as the power of images to further national goals.
The Martin Luther King, Jr., Papers Project, Stanford University
Features texts by and about Martin Luther King, Jr., including more than 100 speeches, sermons, and other writings. In addition, 15 chapters of materials collected from diverse sources and published by the Project in 1998 as The Autobiography of Martin Luther King, Jr. are available. Includes important sermons and speeches such as the 1963 “Letter from a Birmingham Jail,” the March on Washington address; the Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech; and “Rediscovering Lost Values,” a sermon from 1954. The site also provides an interactive chronology of King’s life, a 1,000-word biographical essay; and 23 audio files of recorded speeches and sermons.
Voices of the Civil Rights Era, Webcorp
Audio clips of speeches by three prominent public figures of the early 1960s: six from John F. Kennedy’s Inaugural Address, which reflect the “doomed idealism” of the early 1960s; five from Martin Luther King Jr’s 1963 March on Washington speech; and 11 demonstrating Malcolm X’s oratory prior to his pilgrimage to Mecca. Audio components are introduced by very brief remarks.
The Central High Crisis: Little Rock 1957, Little Rock Newspapers, Inc.
A collection of articles and photographs from two Arkansas newspapers covering the crisis in the city of Little Rock when governor Orval Faubus refused to allow nine African-American students to attend the all-white Central High School, despite Federal court rulings to the contrary. The site includes news articles and editorials from each day of the month-long crisis. Additional materials address the 40th anniversary of the crisis in 1997. The site also timelines and a “Who’s Who” of participants.
Civil Rights in Mississippi Digital Archive, Univ. Southern Mississippi, Center for Oral
This website offers 125 oral histories relating to the civil rights movement, including interviews with civil rights leaders like Charles Cobb, Charles Evers, and Aaron Henry. It also offers oral history information about prominent figures on both sides of the civil rights movement, such as “race-baiting” Governor Ross Barnett, national White Citizens Council leader William J. Simmons, and State Sovereignty leader Erle Johnston. The alphabetical interview index offers a 50–100 word biography of each subject, as well as information on the date and place of the interview. The site promises digitized manuscript and photograph resources in the future.
Documents from the Women’s Liberation Movement, Digital Scriptorium, Duke University
More than 50 documents—including journal and newspaper articles, speeches, papers, manifestoes, essays, press releases, organization statements, songs, and poems—concerning the women’s liberation movement, with a focus on U.S. activity in the late 1960s and early 1970s. Organized into eight subject headings—General and Theoretical; Medical and Reproductive Rights; Music; Organizations and Activism; Sexuality and Lesbian Feminism; Socialist Feminism; Women of Color; and Women’s Work and Roles—and searchable by keyword.
Freedom Now! An Archival Project of Tougaloo College and Brown University, Susan Smulyan, Brown University
This searchable archive offers more than 250 documents from the Mississippi Freedom Movement, the struggle to register African Americans to vote in Mississippi in the early 1960s, and the continuing Brown-Tougaloo Cooperative Exchange that grew out of it. The archive includes books, manuscripts, periodicals, correspondence, interview transcripts, photographs, artifacts, and legal, organizational, and personal documents. The site offers two lesson plans, one focused on the experiences of college-aged civil rights workers during the Freedom Movement and the other on voter registration. This site is a useful resource for researching the Mississippi Freedom Movement, and the history and people of the civil rights movement.
By Popular Demand: Jackie Robinson and Other Baseball Highlights, 1960s-1960s, LOC American Memory
This site features two "special presentations" and presents hundreds of primary materials relating to baseball in America. Materials include letters, manuscripts, trading cards, lobby cards, newspaper images, photographs, advertisements, sheet music, and transcripts of interviews, speeches, and television broadcasts. The first presentation, "Baseball, the Color Line, and Jackie Robinson, 1860s-1960s," furnishes approximately 30 documents and photographs in a 5-section timeline that examines the history of Jackie Robinson's entry into the major league baseball. It includes material on the Negro Leagues, the nature of baseball's color line, Robinson's career as a Brooklyn Dodger, and his role as a civil rights activist. While limited in size and focus with regard to general baseball history, this site is valuable as an introductory look at Jackie Robinson's life and the topic of race in American sports history.
Project Whistlestop, Truman Digital Archive Project
Offers more than 400 selected documents and photographs organized into broad topics, from the decision to drop the atomic bomb to the Marshall Plan, from the 1948 Presidential campaign to the Korean War. Each study collection includes a chronology, diary entries, official documents, and related items. Sixty teaching units, lesson plans, and classroom activities include 24 elementary school projects, 21 middle school activities, and 22 plans for high school students. Teachers can also create their own interactive Internet lessons for students tailored to grade level and specific themes. Study collections are searchable by keyword, collection folder, catalog records, or historical timeline.
Foreign Relations of the United States, 1945-1972, U.S. State Department
Published annually by the State Department, Foreign Relations of the United States is the official record of major declassified U.S. foreign policy decisions and diplomatic activity, with material culled from Presidential libraries and executive departments and agencies. For the Truman Administration, the site provides "1945-50, Emergence of the Intelligence Establishment." Three volumes are available for the Eisenhower years, on American republics, Guatemala, and Eastern Europe, the Soviet Union, and Cyprus. The Kennedy years are represented by 15 volumes that cover Vietnam, the Cuban missile crisis, the Berlin crisis, and exchanges with Premier Khrushchev. 34 volumes are available on the Johnson Administration, and three volumes are furnished from the Nixon years. Volume summaries provide historical context.
Herblock’s History: Political Cartoons from the Crash to the Millennium, Library of Congress
An exhibit of 135 cartoons drawn between 1929 and 2000 by three-time Pulitzer Prize-winning political cartoonist Herblock (Herbert Block) that comment on major events and public issues. The site also presents an essay by Block on “the cartoon as an opinion medium”; a biographical essay; and 15 caricatures of the cartoonist. Organized according to 13 chronological sections, with an additional segment devoted to Presidents.
National Security Archive, Thomas S. Blanton, Directory
Founded in 1985 as a central repository for declassified materials obtained through Freedom of Information Act requests, the Archives at present offers approximately 100 "Briefing Books," each providing government documents and a contextual narrative on national security history and issues, foreign policy initiatives, and military history. While much of the material relates to events abroad, documents provide information on U.S. involvement and perceptions. Major categories include Europe (with documents on the Hungarian Revolution, Solidarity, and the 1989 revolutions); Latin America (overall CIA involvement, war in Colombia, contras, Mexico); nuclear history (treaties, Berlin crisis, India and Pakistan, North Korea, China, Israel); Middle East and South Asia (Iraq and WMD, hostages in Iran, October 1973 war); the U.S. intelligence community; government secrecy; humanitarian interventions; and September 11 sourcebooks.
The Literature and Culture of the American 1950s, Al Filreis, University of Pennsylvania
http://dept.english.upenn.edu/~afilreis/50s/home.html This site presents more than 100 primary texts, essays, biographical sketches, obituaries, book reviews, and partially annotated links relating to the culture and politics of the 1950s. Organized alphabetically and according to lesson plans, this eclectic collection includes short stories by communist writer Howard Fast; texts of two Woody Guthrie songs; entries from the Encyclopedia of the American Left; excerpts from Vance Packard’s The Status Seekers (1959); items concerning McCarthyism; and selected texts. The site also offers materials about the 1930s and 1960s, as well as retrospective analyses of the postwar period.
Korea + 50: No Longer Forgotten, Truman and Eisenhower Presidential Libraries
More than 200 official documents, nine oral histories, and more than 70 photographs pertaining to the pursuance of the Korean War by the administrations of Presidents Harry S. Truman and Dwight D. Eisenhower. Provides day-by-day access covering June 24-September 14, 1950—and more sporadic contributions during subsequent periods—to diplomatic and military documents and accounts by administration officials, including correspondence, speeches, memos, reports, and briefing papers. Also includes extensive “Korean War Teacher Activity” from a high school in Independence, MO.
National Security Action Memoranda of John F. Kennedy, John Fitzgerald Kennedy Library
http://www.jfklibrary.org/nsam.htm This site provides access to 272 facsimiles of National Security Action (NSA) memoranda written by President John F. Kennedy or by McGeorge Bundy, his NSA advisor. Topics include training of Cuban nationals, U.S. forces in Vietnam, Berlin, and civil defense. The documents are indexed by NSA numbers from February 1961 to November 1963. There is a 100-word introduction to the collection, but no contextual material or annotations.
The Real Thirteen Days: Hidden History of the Cuban Missile, National Security Archive
Full-text images of 17 declassified documents, such as a CIA Intelligence Estimate, correspondence, memoranda, and a post-mortem on the crisis, as well as eight audio clips of White House security briefings, spyplane photographs of missile launch sites. The site also offers a chronology of events, a 1000-word essay critical of the film Thirteen Days, a 1500-word essay looking back on the Cold War, and excerpts from seven accounts of the crisis.
The American Experience: Vietnam Online, PBS and WGBH
Companion to the PBS series, Vietnam: A Television History. Transcripts are available for each episode, from the “Roots of a War” to “The End of the Tunnel.” “Who’s Who” provides photographs and profiles of 41 major figures and a timeline covers 1945 to 1997. Twelve personal reflections of the war include the memories of a Vietnamese-born American poet, a U.S. marine, a soldier who guarded the Ho Chi Minh trail, and a Red Cross aid worker. One essay describes the My Lai massacre and another essay discusses the continuing issue of prisoners of war and soldiers missing in action.
The Oyez Project: U.S. Supreme Court Multimedia Database, Jerry Goldman, Northwestern University
http://oyez.nwu.edu/ Vast number of historical documents on cases heard before the Supreme Court. Includes abstracts of more than 1,200 Court opinions and audio files with more than 1,500 hours of oral arguments for cases going back to 1955. It includes such famous cases as Roe v. Wade (abortion), Baker v. Carr (one person—one vote), and Bush v. Gore.
Famous Trials, Douglas Linder, University of Missouri, Kansas City
This exceptional legal history site includes fascinating treatments of twenty of the most prominent court trials in American history, including: the Scopes Monkey Trial (1925); Scottsboro Trials (1931-1937); Nuremburg Trials (1945-49);the Hauptmann (Lindbergh) Trial (1935); and the Sweet Trials (1925-1926). There are also links to biographies of five trial heroes, including famous trial lawyer Clarence Darrow, and a Constitutional Conflicts site that offers twenty-nine important constitutional topics for class discussion.
History and Politics Out Loud, Jerry Goldman, Northwestern University
Audio materials of significant 20th-century events and people, including speeches, addresses, and private telephone conversations. Most material comes from three U.S. presidents—Richard M. Nixon (34 items); Lyndon Baines Johnson (30 items); and John F. Kennedy (19 items).
Lyndon B. Johnson Library and Museum
These 64 oral history interviews include Dean Rusk, Johnson’s secretary, Bess Abell, Robert MacNamara, Thurgood Marshall, and Billy Graham. The site provides transcribed samples of recorded telephone conversations and links to a C-SPAN collection of more than 800 transcribed recorded excerpts and full conversations Johnson had while in office. A selection of 20 speeches and nine messages to Congress are available in transcription and address issues such as the Great Society and limitations on the war in Vietnam. Facsimiles of 98 National Security Action memoranda discuss policies towards Vietnam, nuclear weapons, and Latin America, among other issues.
Watergate Revisited, Washington Post
Commemorates the 25th anniversary of the Watergate burglary. A detailed timeline covers events from Nixon’s election in November 1968 to his resignation in August 1974. Biographies introduce 20 “key players,” including Pat Buchanan, John Ehrlichman, H. R. Halderman, G. Gordon Liddy, and Donald Segretti, while another section details the reforms enacted in response, from the Ethics Rules to efforts to enforce Campaign Spending Limits. One essay explores the identity of Deep Throat, while another examines the impact of the story on the newspaper. Teachers and students can read transcripts of online interviews with Bob Woodward and Ben Bradlee or search for related stories.
Vietnam Center, Vietnam Center, Texas Tech University
The site offers full transcriptions of 11 oral histories of U.S. servicemen who served in Vietnam. It also includes 15 papers from the 1996 symposium, "After the Cold War: Reassessing Vietnam"; a 1996 address by former ambassador William Colby on "Turning Points in the Vietnam War"; 11 issues of "Indochina Chronology," a quarterly journal providing bibliographic resources; 17 issues of the CenterÕs newsletter; listings for 171 dissertations on the Vietnam War; and links to 20 related sites.
Sixties Project & Viet Nam Generation, Viet Nam Generation, Inc., University of Virginia
Resource for teaching and researching America in the 1960s and during the Viet Nam War. The site contains links to 17 primary documents, including materials from the Black Panther Party, the Free Speech Movement, and GI’s United Against War in Viet Nam. More than 100 images of political buttons and posters and a full-text version of Vietnam: An Antiwar Comic Book, written by civil rights activist Julian Bond. Additional items on the site include five keyword searchable, full-text back issues of Viet Nam Generation and 10 syllabi for courses on the 1960s and the Vietnam War. Visitors may contribute their own personal narratives about the 1960s (the quality and accuracy of these personal narratives are not controlled and should be used with caution).
A Visual Journey: Photographs by Lisa Law, 1965-1971, Smithsonian Institution/National Museum of American History
This lively exhibit offers images from the 1960s counterculture as seen through the lens of photographer Lisa Law's camera from 1965 to 1971. The site covers the 1960s folk and rock music scenes, California's counterculture, and commune life in New Mexico in eight chronological sections. Each section offers a 250-300 word summary of the theme and four to eight photographs. A "What Else was Happening" link provides a timeline that covers the social, political, and popular culture highlights of each year from 1963 to 1973.
White House Tapes, Miller Center of Public Affairs, University of Virginia
This website offers access to more than 2,500 hours of White House recordings of six American presidents between 1940 and 1973: Franklin Roosevelt (8 hours), Harry Truman (10 hours), Dwight Eisenhower (4.5 hours), John Kennedy (260 hours), Lyndon Johnson (550 hours), and Richard Nixon (2,019 hours). A brief introduction to each set of recordings is provided and edited transcriptions of the Kennedy tapes are available. "From the Headlines" relates current events to the recordings. Eight exhibits with short scholarly essays utilizing clips from the presidential recordings feature such topics as the civil rights movement, the Vietnam War, Johnson's "War on Poverty," and the Space Race. Additionally, the site presents 16 pre-selected multimedia clips that include recordings of Kennedy discussing withdrawing from Vietnam, Johnson talking to McNamara about leaks, Johnson discussing women in politics, and Nixon discussing Mark Felt during the Watergate cover up. An outstanding resource for researching the administrations of these presidents.
Free Speech Movement: Student Protest, U.C. Berkeley, 1964–65, Bancroft Library, UC Berkeley
Rich archive of material on the Berkeley Free Speech Movement (FSM). Printed material includes five books, 29 leaflets produced by the FSM, 55 letters to and from FSM activists, 11 local radical newsletters, 21 press releases, and six speeches. Visitors may read complete transcripts of 10 oral histories: eight with university administrators and faculty; two with FSM activists. A collection of legal documents includes 40 pages of trial transcripts and 400 letters from FSM activists to Judge Rupert Crittenden, who presided over their trials. This site also provides 96 photographs of FSM rallies and sit-ins taken by Ronald L. Enfield in 1964 and 1965. The site may be searched by subject, but is somewhat difficult to navigate because pages within the collection do not link directly to an index or the collection’s home page.
The Whole World Was Watching: An Oral History of 1968, South Kingston School, Brown University
This site contains transcripts, audio recordings, and edited stories from interviews conducted in the spring of 1998 by sophomores at South Kingstown High School, Rhode Island, about their recollections of 1968. These narratives, including references to the Vietnam War, Civil Rights movement, and the assassinations of Martin Luther King and Robert Kennedy, as well as personal memories, are a living history of one of the most tumultuous years in U.S. history.
Gerald R. Ford Library and Museum, University of Texas
Offers a biography, 120 photographs, and documents about Vietnam. In addition 41 National Security Study memos and 83 National Security Decision memos address Israeli military requirements, the classification of nuclear safeguards, and U.S. policy for Antarctica.