November 26, 2022

Analyzing Primary Sources: Exploring Broadsides, Flyers, and Posters

In "Spreading the Word for a Cause" from the Teaching with with the Library of Congress blog, Teaching with Primary Sources intern Haleigh Reutershan provides examples of primary sources that helped spread information and encourage people to unite and support causes in the times before social media. She then offers suggestions for guiding questions and steps to help students move through primary source analyses, which can help students think about ways in which people communicate(d) information … [Read more...]

Primary Source Learning: Disability History

Unit & lesson plans Teaching Now: Learning About (Dis)ability in History- An Inquiry for Elementary Students Learning from the Source: (Dis)ability History How Disability Activists Created Change Ancient Rome’s Veterans with Disabilities: Roman Accounts and U.S. Veteran Comparisons Activities Accessibility Aids Child Labor in the Early 1900s Disabled Newsies League of the Physically Handicapped's Protests Against the WPA Modern Legislation for Disabled … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Black Women Achievements Against the Odds

Look closely at this source and respond to the questions below. Where is your eye drawn to first? Next? After? What do you notice about the source's design? What, in particular, stands out to you? Why do you think this source was created? How do you know? (Be sure to point to evidence from the source that supports your conclusion.) Take two minutes to make a list of names that you recognize and one fact about each. Pair up with another student and take one minute to share what you … [Read more...]

Literature Links: The Women of Copper Country

Anna Klobuchar Clemenc (Clements), also known as “Big Annie” and America’s Joan of Arc, is the central character in The Women of Copper Country, a historical novel by Maria Doria Russell. Set in Upper Michigan’s Keweenaw Peninsula in 1913, the novel chronicles the work of Anna and the Ladies Auxiliary of the Western Federation of Miners. A significant event is the Italian Hall disaster. Christmas Eve, 1913, a citizen falsely shouted fire in the crowded building as children of union members were … [Read more...]

Today in History: May Day

Today in History–May 1–the Library of Congress features May Day. Originally a celebration of spring, May Day later became a day to celebrate workers and is still celebrated as such in many countries around the world. Learn more about other May Day celebrations by reading the Today in History section, then click the links below to access related primary sources. May Day images May Day books & texts May Day historical U.S. newspaper coverage May Day sheet music Bringing in the … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Woman’s Work

Look carefully at the photograph above and respond to the following questions. What do you notice first? What else do you see? What details can you point to? What might those details tell you about this woman and what she is doing? What might those details tell you about why this photo was taken, or the purpose it might have served? What questions do you have? Now review the bibliographic record for this image, then this set of related images. Were any of your previous … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: Presenting Party Platforms

Zoom into this 1888 presidential election document online or in a .pdf document. Look closely at the graphical elements of the complete document and compare and contrast the presentation of information in the Harrison and Cleveland maps. Which is more pleasing visually and why? How does the visual presentation affect the tone of each map? Describe your findings using specific details from the maps to support your conclusions. Now compare and contrast the textual information presented on each … [Read more...]

Today in History: First Labor Day

Today in History–September 05–the Library of Congress features the first Labor Day, celebrated on this date in 1882. Organized by New York’s Central Labor Union, a representative group made up of from many local unions, the celebration featured a parade, picnic, concert, and speeches. This event inspired others around the country. In 1887 Oregon became the first state to declare Labor Day an official holiday and the federal government followed suit in 1894. Find out more by visiting … [Read more...]

Primary Source Spotlight: A. Philip Randolph

Leading the procession from the Washington Monument to the Lincoln Memorial More A. Philip Randolph images A. Philip Randolph historical newspaper coverage The Brotherhood of Sleeping Car Porters A. Philip Randolph letter to NAACP Secretary Walter White March 18, 1941 The Negro in National Defense 1941 poster Why Should We March? 1941 flyer Executive Order 8802: Prohibition of Discrimination in the Defense Industry 1941 Our Documents NAACP joined union organizer A. Philip … [Read more...]

Today in History: American Federation of Labor & Quarry Workers

Today in History–September 08–the Library of Congress features the Quarry Workers’ International Union of North America, which was granted a charter by the American Federation of Labor (AFL) on this date in 1903. While granite had been mined around the area of Barre, Vermont for years, new waves of immigrants with a strong tradition of unionism arrived in the late 19th century. Find out more about quarries, the life of the miners in Vermont and elsewhere, and the AFL by visiting … [Read more...]