home | many pasts | evidence | www.history | blackboard | reference
talking history | syllabi | students | teachers | puzzle | about us
search: go!
advanced search - go!
Produced in association with Visible Knowledge Project


Abraham Lincoln Papers
Library of Congress, American Memory Project
This collaboration with Knox College Lincoln Studies Center offers approximately 54,000 digital images and 3,500 annotated transcriptions of documents relating to President Abraham Lincoln’s life and career, including incoming and outgoing correspondence. This collection was originally gathered by Lincoln’s son, Robert Todd Lincoln.

The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship
Library of Congress, American Memory Project
More than 240 items, including 20 letters and diaries presented as digital reproductions and transcribed excerpts, augment a concise narrative of African-American history. The site explores black America’s quest for political, social, and economic equality from the early national period through the twentieth century. The exhibit is organized into nine chronological periods and documents contributions of African Americans of all classes, including political leaders, artists, writers, and soldiers.

Do History
Film Study Center at Harvard University
This site explores the remarkable eighteenth-century diary of midwife Martha Ballard. The site offers two versions of the 1400-page diary, facsimile and transcribed full-text; the latter is searchable by keyword and date. It also examines how historian Laurel Thatcher Ulrich pieced together the diary to write the book A Midwife’s Tale. Two “Doing History” exercises allow visitors to analyze Ballard’s notes about two controversies.

First-Person Narratives of the American South
University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Libraries
Features 100 texts relating to the culture of the American south in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Focusing on the voices of women, African Americans, laborers, and Native Americans, the site offers a variety of documents, including personal accounts, letters, and diaries. The materials are searchable by keyword and arranged into author, title, and document-type indexes.

Free Speech Movement: Student Protest, U.C. Berkeley, 1964-65
University of California, Berkeley, Bancroft Library
The Bancroft Library has put its entire archive of material on the Berkeley Free Speech Movement (FSM) online. Printed material includes 55 letters to and from FSM activists, as well as 400 letters from FSM activists to Judge Rupert Crittenden, who presided over their trials.

Prairie Settlement: Nebraska Photographs and Family Letters
Library of Congress, American Memory Project
This collaboration integrates two Nebraska State Historical Society collections that illustrate the story of settlement on the Great Plains from 1862 to 1912. The approximately 3,000 pages of family letters describe the trials of establishing a homestead in Nebraska and everyday life on the Great Plains as they follow the Uriah Oblinger family’s sojourns in Indiana, Nebraska, Minnesota, Kansas, and Missouri. They discuss such topics as land, work, neighbors, crops, religious meetings, problems with grasshoppers, financial troubles, and Nebraska’s Easter Blizzard of 1873. A 1000-word essay describes the letter collection and the lives of the principal correspondents and offers 12 images of family members and documents. Biographical notes of about 30-50 words are also available for more than 80 of the people who corresponded with the Oblingers or who were mentioned in the letters.

Surveyors of the West: William Henry Jackson and Robert Brewster Stanton
New York Public Library Digital Collections
This site presents the journals of two men who surveyed the western states in the second half of the nineteenth century. William Henry Jackson was a photographer, artist, and writer who traveled along the route of the Union Pacific Railway in 1869. Jackson's diary describes how he took and developed photographs during the expedition. Robert Brewster Stanton was a civil engineer who surveyed canyons in Colorado for the Colorado Canyon and Pacific Railroad Company between 1889 and 1890. Four volumes of his typed field notes are available as images.

Thomas Jefferson Papers
Library of Congress, American Memory Project
Digitized images of approximately 27,000 documents in the Library of Congress, the largest collection of original Jefferson documents in the world. Includes correspondence, commonplace books, financial account books, and manuscript volumes—approximately 83,000 images. It is organized chronologically and is searchable by keyword. The documents are only presented as page images.

Valley of the Shadow
Edward L. Ayers, University of Virginia
This searchable archive of thousands of pages relating to two communities – Staunton, Virginia, and Chambersburg, Pennsylvania – before, during, and after the Civil War includes more than 600 letters and diaries. These are divided into three separate time categories: Eve of War (http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/vshadow2/letters.html); War Years (http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/vshadow2/cwletters.html); and Aftermath (http://jefferson.village.virginia.edu/vshadow2/cwletters3.html).

Women’s Studies Manuscript Diaries
Schoenberg Center, University of Pennsylvania Library
This site contains digital images of six manuscript diaries written from the mid-nineteenth to the mid-twentieth centuries, primarily from the northeastern U.S.