November 15, 2019

Primary Source Spotlight: Voting Rights Act of 1965

Online exhibition items & curator notes Voting Rights Act of 1965 African American Odyssey Voting Rights Act of 1965 Civil Rights Act of 1964 Voting Rights Act of 1965 NAACP: A Century in the Fight for Freedom Voting rights political cartoons by Herb Block Don’t Be Getting Any Ideas That You Have a Right to Vote March 11,1965 Commemorating the Action at Montgomery, Alabama March 18, 1965 Literacy Test March 17, 1965 Say, This Is Okay—A Majority of Us That Can … [Read more...]

Citizen U Webinar: The “Four Freedoms” & the Bill of Rights

Citizen U lessons infuse civic knowledge, skills, and dispositions across the core subjects in elementary, middle, and high school grades. This interactive webinar will feature practice with interdisciplinary civics, inquiry-based learning, and teaching with primary sources. You'll see how these free lessons can be used in either ELA or social studies classes and how they're differentiated across grade spans from elementary to high school. You’ll also be eligible to enter a drawing for a $50 … [Read more...]

Learning from the Source: Addressing the Gettysburg Address

This lesson may be completed in whole or in part, depending on the needs of your students and the time that you have. FOCUS QUESTION In what ways is equality a proposition, or belief, worth fighting for? LESSON OVERVIEW Students will consider whether equality is important to our democracy as they develop a deep understanding of the literary and historical value of the Gettysburg Address through a game-based close reading of the text. LESSON OBJECTIVES Analyze primary sources … [Read more...]

Guided Primary Source Analysis: President Obama’s 2016 State of the Union Address

Read this In Custodia Legis blog post on State of the Union addresses from the Library of Congress. List the main points covered in the post. Then look at the Wordle™ made from the text of President Barack Obama's final State of the Union address given on January 12, 2016. What key themes are highlighted in this Wordle? How do those themes compare to the main headings of the address as categorized by the 2016 address White House web page? Read the full text of President Barack Obama's … [Read more...]

Today in History: Bastille Day & the French Revolution

Today in History–July 14–TPS-Barat Primary Source Nexus features Bastille Day, which commemorates the 1790 Fête de la Fédération held on the first anniversary of the storming of the Bastille in Paris, France on July 14, 1789. This action marked the beginning of the French Revolution. Find out more about these events by investigating a variety of primary and secondary sources linked to below. News from France following the storming of Bastille, including the King's Speech of July 16 Gazette of … [Read more...]

Primary Source Spotlight: Amelia Earhart

Amelia Earhart felt she was meant to fly. In 1932, she became the first woman to pilot a plane across the Atlantic Ocean and three years later, in 1935, she became the first person to fly solo across the Pacific from Hawaii to California. On July 2, 1937, towards the end of her round-the-world flight over the Pacific Ocean somewhere between New Guinea and Howland Island, Earhart and navigator Fred Noonan sent their last radio communication. The mystery of their disappearance has never been … [Read more...]

Primary Source Spotlight: Lynching

Please be sure to review all primary sources prior to introducing students to them. You may also wish to read Selecting Primary Sources That Deal with Difficult Issues. Lynching by Helen Douglass 1859 manuscript "Lynch Law in the South" by Frederick Douglass The North American Review Volume 155, Issue 428 July 1892 Lynch Laws speech by Frederick Douglass The facts in the case of the horrible murder of little Myrtle Vance c 1893 Lessons of the Hour speech by Frederick Douglass, … [Read more...]

Primary Source Spotlight: Slavery (U.S.)

Library slavery collections Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1938 more than 2,300 first-person accounts of slavery and 500 black-and-white photographs of former slaves An Introduction to the WPA Slave Narratives Caroline Hammond (a fugitive) "I was born in Anne Arundel County near Davidsonville about 3 miles from South River in the year 1844...." The story of Charles Crawley, ex-slave "God knows, how old I am. All I know is, I wuz born … [Read more...]

Teaching Now: Determining the Main Idea of a Text

This is a guest post from Glenn Jensen, a national board certified U.S. and world history teacher at Kennedy High School in Chicago, Illinois. Glenn has developed an exercise that is a great way to begin analyzing primary source texts because it has students focus on what they know, what they can extrapolate from that knowledge, and how they can apply that knowledge to their own lives. Below he describes how he recently implemented the text analysis with his students; the activity, which meets … [Read more...]

Today in History: Henry Cabot Lodge

Today in History–May 12–the Library of Congress features politician and historian Henry Cabot Lodge, born on this day in 1850. Lodge was a long-standing member of Congress, serving the state of Massachusetts as a U.S. representative from 1887 to 1893 and a U.S. senator from 1893 to 1924. This Republican statesman is perhaps best known for his staunch argument against U.S. participation in the League of Nations proposed by President Woodrow Wilson. Find out more about this fiery orator by … [Read more...]