There are 520 matching records.
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American Memory: Historical Collections for the National Digital Library Library of Congress, American Memory. This expansive archive of American history and culture features photographs, prints, motion pictures, manuscripts, printed books, pamphlets, maps, and sound recordings going back to roughly 1490. Currently this site includes more than 9 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. Most topical sites include special presentations introducing particular depositories or providing historical context for archival materials. Visitors can search collections separately or all at once by keyword and type of source (photos and prints, documents, films, sound recordings, or maps). In addition, the Learning Page provides well-organized help for using the collections, including sample teaching assignments. WWW.History includes individual annotations for many of the current collections. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
Documenting the American South University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Libraries. See JAH web review by Crandall Shifflett. Reviewed 2002-03-01. This database presents nearly 1,400 primary documents about the American South in the 18th, 19th, and early 20th centuries. Culled from the premier collections at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill (UNC), the database features ten major projects. Presenting the beginnings of the University of North Carolina, “The First Century of the First State University,” offers “materials that document the creation and growth” of the University. “Oral Histories of th American South” has made 500 oral history interviews on the civil rights, environmental, industrial, and political history of the South. 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. (See separate History Matters entry for more details.) “North American Slave Narratives” also furnishes about 250 texts. And the “Library of Southern Literature” makes available an additional 51 titles in Southern literature. “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.“ “The North Carolina Experience, Beginnings to 1940” provides approximately 575 histories, descriptive accounts, institutional reports, works of fiction, images, oral histories, and songs. “North Carolinians and the Great War” offers approximately 170 documents on effects of World War I and its legacy. Finally, ”True and Candid Compositions: The Lives and Writings of Antebellum Students at the University of North Carolina" analyzes 121 documents written by students attending the University of North Carolina. The projects are accompanied by essays from the Encyclopedia of Southern Culture, and are searchable by author, keyword, and title. They reflect a larger effort, begun in 1995, to digitize the Southern collections at UNC. Resources Available: TEXT. Website last visited on 2007-10-18.
Oyez: U.S. Supreme Court Multimedia Jerry Goldman, Northwestern University. See JAH web review by Melvin I. Urofsky. Reviewed 2001-09-01. Features audio files, abstracts, transcriptions of oral arguments, and written opinions on more than 3,300 Supreme Court cases. Includes more than 3,000 hours of audio of arguments in selected cases going back to 1955 and all cases since 1995. Users can access cases through keyword searches or a list of 13 broad categories, including civil rights, due process, first amendment, judicial power, privacy, and unions. Also provides easy access to the 20 “most popular cases”—such as Roe v. Wade (abortion), Gideon v. Wainwright (right to counsel), Plessy v. Ferguson (segregation), Grutter v. Bollinger (racial preferences in school admissions decisions), and Bush v. Gore— determined by numbers of hits to the site. Also offers images and biographical outlines for every justice who has served on the Court. “The Pending Docket” provides briefs of pending cases, along with links to relevant opinions; additional material on selected cases; a summary highlighting cases decided in the previous session with a breakdown of the voting of individual justices; and a forum for discussions of selected recent cases. The site also includes a “virtual tour” of the Court building; links to all the written opinions of the Court since 1893; and audio of speeches by a handful of justices. Of great value for those practicing law and studying its history. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO. Website last visited on 2007-10-18.
Digital History Steven Mintz and Sara McNeil. See JAH web review by Simon Appleford and Vernon Burton. Reviewed 2008-03-01. Provides multimedia resources and links for teaching American history and conducting basic research, while focusing on slavery, ethnic history, private life, technological achievement, and American film. Presents more than 600 documents pertaining to American politics, diplomacy, social history, slavery, Mexican American history, and Native American history, searchable by author, time period, subject, and keyword, and annotated with essays of 300–500 words each. The site offers a full U.S. history textbook and more than 1,500 searchable and briefly annotated links to American history-related sites, including approximately 150 links to historic Supreme Court decisions, 330 links to audio files of historic speeches, and more than 450 links to audio files and transcripts of historians discussing their own books. Also includes five high school lesson plans; 39 fact sheets with quotations and study questions on major historical topics; 10 essays (800 words) on past controversies, such as the Vietnam War, socialism, and the war on poverty; seven essays presenting historical background on more recent controversies, such as hostage crises and NATO in Kosovo; and essays of more than 10,000 words each on the history of American film and private life in America. Four current exhibits offer 217 photographs, ca. 1896–1903, from the Calhoun Industrial School in Alabama, a freedmen’s school; 19 watercolor sketches by a Civil War soldier; seven letters between 18th-century English historian Catharine Macaulay and American historian Mercy Otis Warren; and an 1865 letter from Frederick Douglass to Mary Todd Lincoln. A valuable site for high school students and teachers looking for comprehensive guidance from professional historians on the current state of debate on many topics in American history. Resources Available: IMAGES. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
Ad*Access Digital Scriptorium, Duke University. See JAH web review by Kelly Schrum. Reviewed 2001-09-01. This well-developed, easily navigated site presents images and database information for more than 7,000 advertisements printed primarily in the United States from 1911 to 1955. Material is drawn from the J. Walter Thompson Company Competitive Advertisements Collection of the John W. Hartman Center for Sales, Advertising, and Marketing History at Duke University. The advertisements are divided into 5 main subjects areas: Radio (including radios, radio parts, and radio programs); Television (including television sets and programs); Transportation (including airlines, rental cars, buses, trains, and ships); Beauty and Hygiene (including cosmetics, soaps, and shaving supplies); and World War II (U.S. Government ads, such as V-mail or bond drives). The ads are searchable by keyword, type of illustration, and special features. A timeline from 1915 to 1955 provides general context for the ads with a chronology of major events. “About Ad Access” provides an overview of advertising history and the Duke collection, as well as a bibliography and list of advertising repositories in the U.S. Excellent archive of primary documents for students of consumer and popular culture.
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Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-10-10.
Famous Trials Douglas Linder, Professor of Law, University of Missouri, Kansas City. See JAH web review by Jerry Goldman. Reviewed 2001-09-01. Law professor Douglas Linder created this exceptional legal history site. It includes fascinating treatments of over 50 of the most prominent court trials in American history, including: Scopes “Monkey” Trial (1925); Rosenberg Trial (1951); Leopold and Loeb Trial (1924); Salem Witchcraft Trials (1692); Scottsboro Trials (1931–1937); Bill Haywood Trial (1907); My Lai Courts Martial (1970); Nuremberg Trials (1945–49); Dakota Conflict Trials (1862); Mississippi Burning Trial (1967); Chicago Seven Conspiracy (1969–70); Johnson Impeachment Trial (1868); O.J. Simpson Trial (1995); The Three Trials of Oscar Wilde (1895); Hauptmann (Lindbergh) Trial (1935); Sweet Trials (1925–1926); Amistad Trials (1839–1840); Sheriff Shipp Trial (1907–1909); Susan B. Anthony Trial (1873); the Sacco and Vanzetti Trial (1921); Clinton Impeachment Trial (1999); Moussaoui 9/11 Trial (2006); and the Black Sox Trial (1921). Most trial pages include a 750–1000-word essay on the historical background of the case, links to biographies (roughly 500 words) of key figures in the trials, and approximately 15–25 primary documents related to each trial, including transcripts of testimony, media coverage, depositions, and government documents. Cases also contain images, links to related websites, and a bibliography of scholarly works. There are also links to biographies of 5 “trial heroes,” including famous trial lawyer Clarence Darrow, and a “Exploring Constitutional Law” site that offers 83 important constitutional topics for class discussion, such as gay rights, student searches, and the electoral college debates. Each topic includes a 250–300-word introduction to the issue and links to roughly ten related primary documents and court opinions. These topics are designed for classroom use and include issue questions for discussion. Another link explores the Supreme Court and includes items such as biographies of past and present justices, a virtual tour of the Supreme Court building, and a term calendar. Three interactive learning sites on the Bill of Rights, the Constitution, and the Founding Fathers are also offered. This exceptional site can serve as a valuable resource for studying many aspects of legal and constitutional history.
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Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-10-11.
Uncle Tom’s Cabin and American Culture Stephen Railton, University of Virginia. See JAH web review by Ellen Noonan. Reviewed 2001-12-01. This well-designed site explores Harriet Beecher Stowe’s Uncle Tom’s Cabin “as an American cultural phenomenon.” The section of “Pre Texts, 1830–1852” provides dozens of texts, songs, and images from the various genres Stowe drew upon: Christian Texts, Sentimental Culture, Anti-Slavery Texts, and Minstrel Shows. The section on Uncle Tom’s Cabin includes Stowe’s preface, multiple versions of the text, playable songs from the novel, and Stowe’s defense against criticism, The Key to Uncle Tom’s Cabin. A third section focuses on responses to the book from 1852 to 1930, including 25 reviews, over 400 articles and notes, nearly 100 responses from African Americans, and almost 70 of pro-slavery responses. The final section explores “Other Media,” including children’s books, songs, games, and theatrical versions. 15 interpretive exhibits challenge students to explore how slavery and race were defined and redefined as well as how various characters assumed a range of political and social meanings. Excellent for teachers and students. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO. Website last visited on 2007-10-11.
Remembering Jim Crow American RadioWorks. See JAH web review by Joseph Crespino. Reviewed 2003-09-01. A companion site to the NPR radio documentary on segregated life in the South (broadcast in February 2002). Presents 30 audio excerpts, ranging from one minute to ten minutes in length, and approximately 130 photographs, arranged in six thematically-organized sections. Covers legal, social, and cultural aspects of segregation, black community life, and black resistance to the Jim Crow way of life. As anthropologist Kate Ellis, one of the site’s creators, notes, the interviews display a “marked contrast between African American and white reflections on Jim Crow.” Many of the photographs come from personal collections of the people interviewed. The site also includes 16 photographs taken by Farm Security Administration photographer Russell Lee in New Iberia, Louisiana. The site provides audio files and transcripts of the original radio documentary, more than 90 additional stories, a sampling of state segregation laws arranged by topic, links to 9 related sites, and a 41-title bibliography. The project creators—Ellis and personnel from American RadioWorks, the Minnesota Public Radio documentary producers—used interviews selected from more than 1,000 oral histories compiled by Duke University’s “Behind the Veil” project, in addition to conducting new interviews. The short 100-word introductions to each section succinctly provide a contextual framework to the documentary material. Valuable for those studying the American South, race relations, and African American history. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO. Website last visited on 2007-09-19.
The Wizard of Oz: An American Fairy Tale Library of Congress. This well-designed exhibit is composed of three galleries focused on the cultural impact of L. Frank Baum’s The Wonderful Wizard of Oz. Each gallery contains multiple panels with one or more images and explanatory text. “‘To Please a Child’: L. Frank Baum and the Land of Oz” uses 16 panels to examine various aspects of the book, including W.W. Denslow’s artwork, Baum’s original copyright application, and an early review of the book appearing in the October 1900 issue of The Literary Review. “To See the Wizard: Oz on Stage and Film” uses 21 panels to look at 2 of the most famous productions of Baum’s book, the 1902–1903 stage play that became one of Broadway’s greatest successes and the classic 1939 MGM movie. The panels on the stage play include 2 color posters published in 1903 to promote the show and the 16 panels on MGM’s version examine the cast, production, and music, including a full-page color advertisement placed in the September 1939 issue of Cosmopolitan. “To Own the Wizard: Oz Artifacts,” with 18 panels, examines 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. This exhibit is of interest to anyone studying popular culture or the history of the arts in 20th-century America. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-09-24.
California Gold: Northern California Folk Music from the Thirties American Memory, Library of Congress. This site features 35 hours of folk and popular music sound recordings from several European, Slavic, Middle Eastern, and English- and Spanish-speaking communities. The Work Projects Administration California Folk Music Project collected these 817 songs, in 12 languages and representing 185 musicians, in Northern California between 1938 and 1940. The collection also includes 168 photographs of musicians, 45 scale drawings and sketches of instruments, and numerous written documents, including ethnographic field reports and notes, song transcriptions, published articles, and project correspondence. Organized by folk music collector Sidney Robertson Cowell, sponsored by the University of California, Berkeley, and cosponsored by the Archive of the American Folk Song, this was one of the earliest ethnographic field projects to document folk and popular music of such diverse origin in one region. In addition to folk music of indigenous and immigrant groups, the collection includes popular songs from the Gold Rush and Barbary Coast eras, medicine show tunes, and ragtime numbers. In addition, short essays describe the California Folk Music Project and the ethnographic work of Sidney Robertson Cowell. This collection is an excellent resource for learning about ethnographic research practices as well as about cultures of various California ethnic groups. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO. Website last visited on 2008-10-14.
American Variety Stage: Vaudeville and Popular Entertainment, 1870–1920 American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Robert W. Snyder. Reviewed 2004-07-01. This collection documents the development of vaudeville and other popular entertainment forms from the 1870s to the 1920s. It includes 334 English and Yiddish playscripts, 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 and career of magician Harry Houdini and an essay with links to specific items entitled “Houdini: A Biographical Chronology.” Search by keyword or browse the subject and author indexes. The site is linked to the Library of Congress Exhibition “Bob Hope and American Variety.” Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2007-10-02.
African-American Perspectives: Pamphlets from the Daniel A. P. Murray Collection, 1818–1907 American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Randall Burkett. Reviewed 2005-12-01. This site presents approximately 350 African-American pamphlets and documents, most of them produced between 1875 and 1900. These works provide “a panoramic and eclectic review of African-American history and culture” in a number of forms, including sermons, organization reports, college catalogs, graduation orations, slave narratives, Congressional speeches, poetry, and playscripts. Topics covered include segregation, voting rights, violence against African Americans, and the colonization movement. Authors include Frederick Douglass, Booker T. Washington, Ida B. Wells-Barnett, Benjamin W. Arnett, Alexander Crummel, and Emanuel Love. Information about publication and a short description (75 words) of content accompanies each pamphlet. The site also offers a timeline of African-American history from 1852 to 1925 and reproductions of original documents and illustrations. A special presentation “The Progress of a People,” recreates a meeting of the National Afro-American Council in December 1898. A rich resource for studying 19th- and early 20th-century African-American leaders and representatives of African-American religious, civic, and social organizations. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-10-02.
Touring Turn-of-the-Century America: Photographs from the Detroit Publishing Company, 1880–1920 American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Marguerite S. Shaffer. Reviewed 2004-07-01. The Detroit Publishing Company was a mass producer of photographic images—especially color postcards, prints, and albums—for the American market from the late 1890s to 1924, the year it went into receivership. This collection of more than 25,000 glass negatives and transparencies and about 300 color photolithograph prints also includes images taken prior to the establishment of the company by landscape photographer William Henry Jackson, who joined the company in 1897 and became its president the following year. Jackson’s earlier work documenting western sites influenced the conservation movement and influenced the establishment of various national parks, including Yellowstone. Although many images in this collection 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 period of the Spanish-American War. About 900 Mammoth Plate Photographs include views taken by Jackson of Hopi peoples and their crafts, landscapes along several railroad lines in the United States and Mexico in the 1880s and 1890s, and at other sites in California and Wyoming; and by Henry Greenwood Peabody of the Canadian Rockies. Resources Available: IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-10-02.
Spanish-American War in Motion Pictures American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Bonnie M. Miller. Reviewed 2006-09-01. This site features 68 motion pictures of the Spanish-American War and the Philippine Revolution produced by the Edison Manufacturing Company and the American Mutoscope & Biograph Company between 1898 and 1901. These films include footage of troops, ships, notable figures, and parades shot in the U.S., Cuba, and the Philippines, in addition to reenactments of battles and related events. A Special Presentation puts the motion pictures in chronological order; brief essays provide a historical context for their filming. This site is indexed by subject and searchable by keyword, and includes a link to resources and documents pertaining to the war in the Library’s Hispanic Division. Resources Available: TEXT, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2007-10-02.
American Leaders Speak: Recordings from World War I and the 1920 Election American Memory, Library of Congress. Consists of 59 sound recordings of speeches by American leaders produced from 1918 to 1920 on the Nation’s Forum record label. The speeches—by such prominent public figures as Warren G. Harding, James M. Cox, Calvin Coolidge, Franklin D. Roosevelt, Samuel Gompers, Henry Cabot Lodge, John J. Pershing, Will H. Hays, A. Mitchell Palmer, and Rabbi Stephen S. Wise—deal for the most part with issues and events related to World War I and the 1920 presidential election. Additional topics include social unrest, Americanism, bolshevism, taxes, and business practices. Speeches range from 1 to 5 minutes in length. A special presentation, “From War to Normalcy,” introduces the Nation’s Forum Collection with representative recordings from World War I and the 1920 election, including Harding’s famous pronouncement that Americans need “not nostrums but normalcy.” This site includes photographs of speakers and of the actual recording disk labels, as well as text versions of the speeches. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO. Website last visited on 2007-10-03.
Votes for Women: Selections from the National American Woman Suffrage Association Collection, 1848–1921 American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Eileen V. Wallis. Reviewed 2012-03-01. This site, representing a subset of items from the Library of Congress' National American Woman Suffrage Association (NAWSA) Collection, 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. The site includes 2 bibliographies of related works on the suffrage campaign, a 700-word essay on Catt, a timeline entitled “One Hundred Years toward Suffrage: An Overview,” and links to 11 related collections. While a special application is necessary to view reproductions of documents and illustrations, texts of documents have been scanned and are word-searchable. Also see the site’s pictorial partner at . Useful for studying women in politics, female leaders, and suffrage. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-10-03.
Washington As It Was: Photographs by Theodor Horydczak, 1923–1959 American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Zachary M. Schrag. Reviewed 2005-09-01. Presents approximately 14,350 photographs by Theodor Horydczak (1890–1971), most of which document the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area between the 1920s and 1950s. Subjects include the architecture and interiors of government, commercial, and residential buildings; views of streets and neighborhoods; images of work and leisure; and events such as the 1932 Bonus March and the 1933 World Series. Also includes a limited number of shots taken in other U.S. locations and in Canada and a background essay, “Discovering Theodor Horydczak’s Washington.” Provides visual documentation of official and everyday life in the nation’s capital and its environs. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2008-10-14.
Around the World in the 1890s: Photographs from the World’s Transportation Commission, 1894–1896 American Memory, Library of Congress. This photo archive contains over 900 images made by American photographer William Henry Jackson (1843–1942) during an 1890’s tour of North Africa, Asia, Australia, and Oceania. The World’s Transportation Commission, an organization formed to aid American business interests abroad, commissioned Jackson. The photographs, originally exhibited in Chicago’s Field Columbian Museum, focus on transportation systems—especially railroads—tourist sites, indigenous life, and locations of natural beauty. Nearly 687 of the images are from lantern slides, many of which were hand-colored. Many of the photographs appeared in Harper’s Weekly. This collection is valuable for those interested in late-19th-century photography and American views of exotic places. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-09-27.
WWW-Virtual Library, History Central Catalogue History Index Network, University of Kansas. Created by an international group of volunteer institutions, this site offers a gateway with thousands of links to general history resources and seeks to provide “effective tools for practicing historians wishing to work online.“ Links are presented for the following categories: ”Research: Methods and Materials“; ”Eras and Epochs“; ”Historical Topics“; and ”By Countries and Regions." Resources Available: TEXT. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
Red Hot Jazz Archive: A History of Jazz before 1930 Scott Alexander. See JAH web review by Burton W. Peretti. Reviewed 2002-12-01. This comprehensive site offers biographical information, photographs, and audio and video files for more than 200 jazz bands and musicians active from 1895 to 1929. It includes more than 200 sound files of jazz recordings by well-known artists, such as Louis Armstrong, Sidney Bechet, and Django Reinhardt, and by dozens of lesser-known musicians. The files are annotated with biographical essays of 100 to more than 1,000 words, discographies, and bibliographic listings. Also includes listings of 20 short jazz films made in the late 1920s and early 1930s, and video files for two of these. Offers 20 essays and articles about jazz before 1930, ranging in length from 1,000 to 4,500 words, taken from published liner notes, books, and journals, or written specifically for this website by jazz fans. A valuable collection of audio documents and accompanying information. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2007-09-19.
New York Public Library Digital Gallery New York Public Library. This massive collection presents more than 550,000 images relevant to both U.S. and world history, from the earliest days of print culture to the present. These images consist primarily of historical maps, posters, prints and photographs, illuminated manuscript pages, and images drawn from published books. For browsing, the materials are divided by subject heading, library of origin, the name of the item’s creator and/or publisher, and by collection: Arts & Literature; Cities & Building; Culture & Society; History & Geography; Industry & Technology; Nature & Science; and Printing & Graphics. Within these broad collection headings, the images are further subdivided into more specific groupings, for example, Indonesian dance, dress and fashion, Civil War medical care, and New York City apartment buildings. Keyword and Advanced Search options are useful for those wishing to locate specific items. All images can be downloaded for personal use and are accompanied by detailed biographic information, though users will have to turn elsewhere for further historical context. Resources Available: IMAGES. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
Federal Resources for Educational Excellence: History & Social Studies U.S. Department of Education. This megasite brings together resources for teaching U.S. and world history from the far corners of the web. Most of these websites boast large collections of primary sources from the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian, the National Archives and Records Administration, and prominent universities. There are more than 600 websites listed for U.S. history alone, divided by time period and topic: Business & Work, Ethnic Groups, Famous People, Government, Movements, States & Regions, Wars, and Other Social Studies. While most of these websites are either primary source archives (for example, History of the American West, 1860–1920) or virtual exhibits, many offer lesson plans and ready-made student activities, such as EDSITEment, created by the National Endowment for the Humanities. A good place to begin is the (Subject Map), which lists resources by sub-topic, including African Americans (67 resources), Women’s History (37 resources), and Natural Disasters (16 resources). Each resource is accompanied by a brief annotation that facilitates quick browsing.
Resources Available: TEXT. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
An American Ballroom Companion: Dance Instruction Manuals, ca. 1490–1920 American Memory, Library of Congress. Features more than 200 “social dance manuals” and related materials in western dance history, from Burgundian dances of the Late Middle Ages to Ragtime dances in vogue between 1890 and World War I. The site offers a rich selection of manuals—including the rare document, Les basses danses de Marguerite d’Autriche, published around 1490—as well as histories, theoretical studies, treatises on etiquette, antidance literature, and other items. Designed to “illuminate the manner in which people have joyfully expressed themselves as they dance for and with one another,” the site also provides a 13,000-word introductory essay, “Western Social Dance: An Overview of the Collection,” which is illustrated with 44 images, 75 video clips demonstrating selected dances from the manuals, and a bibliography of 77 titles. A well-organized presentation that will interest students of dance and of the cultural history of Europe and the U.S. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2008-10-09.
Avalon Project: Documents in Law, History, and Government William C. Fray and Lisa A. Spar. This website, sponsored by Yale Law School with the International Relations and Security Network (ISN), is a collection of over 3,500 full-text documents relevant to the fields of law, history, economics, politics, diplomacy, and government. The documents are divided into four century categories: pre-18th, 18th, 19th, and 20th. 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. All materials can be accessed through an alphabetical list, through the Major Collections page, through the four century pages, or by a keyword search. All of the search modes are easily navigable. Though most of these documents are directly related to American history, the site also includes over 100 documents on ancient, medieval, and Renaissance history, European history, and modern diplomatic documents such as the Hamas Covenant. The site is ideal for researching American diplomacy, constitutional, political, and legal history.
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Resources Available: TEXT. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
Inventing Entertainment: The Early Motion Pictures and Sound Recordings of the Edison Companies American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Elena Razlogova. Reviewed 2006-12-01. This excellent site features 341 motion pictures, 81 disc sound recordings, and other related materials, such as photographs and original magazine articles documenting Thomas Edison’s corporate impact on the history of American entertainment. Thomas Alva Edison (1847–1931)—prolific inventor, manufacturer, and businessman—patented 1,093 inventions, including the phonograph, the kinetograph (a motion picture camera), and the kinetoscope (a motion picture viewer). All are searchable by keyword, title, or subject; movies are presented in QuickTime, Mpeg and RealMedia formats and a capsule description of each film is provided. Special pages focus on the life of the great inventor and histories of Edison’s contribution to motion picture and sound recording technologies. Part of the American Memory Collection at the Library of Congress, drawn from collections in the Library of Congress Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2007-10-01.
South Texas Border, 1900–1920: Photographs from the Robert Runyon Collection American Memory, Library of Congress and University of Texas, Austin. See JAH web review by Neil Foley. Reviewed 2003-03-01. A collection featuring the life’s work of commercial photographer Robert Runyon (1881–1968), totalling more than 8,000 images, that document the history and development of South Texas and the border, including the U.S. military presence in the area prior to and during World War I and the growth and development of the Rio Grande Valley in the early 1900s. A special section presents nine of Runyon’s 350 photographs of the Mexican Revolution (1910–20) in Matamoros, Monterrey, Ciudad Victoria, and the Texas border area from 1913 through 1916. Includes a 900-word essay on the Revolution and a 1,100-word biographical essay on Runyon. An Ameritech Award Winner. Of use to those studying the history of documentary photography, images of the Mexican Revolution, and Texas history. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2007-12-04.
SCETI: Schoenberg Center for Electronic Text and Image University of Pennsylvania Special Collections Library. These eclectic special collection materials span the 17th to the 20th centuries. Visitors can search material from nine collections and visit 14 exhibitions. The collection “A Crisis of the Union” on the Civil War presents 224 pamphlets, broadsides, clippings, paintings, and maps to address the “causes, conduct, and consequences” of the war. A collection devoted to Theodore Dreiser presents correspondence, variant editions of the novel Sister Carrie, an early manuscript for Jennie Gerhardt, and scholarly essays. A collection of approximately 4,000 photographs from singer Marian Anderson’s papers is complemented by an exhibit that includes more than 40 audio and video recordings. A collection on the history of chemistry emphasizes the pre-1850 period with monographs on chemistry and alchemy, and more than 3,000 prints and photographs of scientists, laboratories, and apparatus. The Robert and Molly Freedman archive of Jewish Music recordings includes 26,000 catalog entries in English, Yiddish, and Hebrew and six sample recordings. Exhibits celebrate the work of Eugene Ormandy and Leopold Stokowski. Women’s history is represented by the diaries of five American and one English woman written between 1850 and 1909. Diaries range from one to 30 years and are both indexed by date and available for reading as text. An exhibit titled “Household Words” presents writing by women about food from the 15th to the 20th century. An exhibit on the colonization of the Americas as it appeared in print presents illustrations, maps, and manuscripts from the age of exploration. The site also includes an exhibit on the development of the ENIAC computer and a selection of 49 works from the University of Pennsylvania’s art museum. he English Renaissance in Context (ERIC) provides tutorials and a database of texts to help students analyze Shakespearean works and plays. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, AUDIO, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2007-12-04.
Evolution of the Conservation Movement, 1850–1920 American Memory, Library of Congress. See JAH web review by Char Miller. Reviewed 2010-03-01. Part of the Library of Congress’s American Memory online collection, 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 drawn from the collections of the Library of Congress. The site contains 62 books and pamphlets, 140 Federal statutes and Congressional resolutions, 34 additional legislative documents, excerpts from the Congressional Globe and the Congressional Record, 360 presidential proclamations, 170 prints and photographs, two historic manuscripts, and two motion pictures. Site visitors can view such holdings as 20 Alfred Bierstadt paintings, period travel literature, a photographic record of Yosemite, 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. The chronology is broken into six periods: 1847–1871; 1872–1889; 1890–1900; 1901–1907; 1908–1911; and 1912–1920. The site is easily navigable and is searchable by subject, author, and keyword. Ideal for researching the history of national parks, nature, and conservation movements in the United States. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES, VIDEO. Website last visited on 2007-11-15.
U.S. Senate Historical Office U.S. Senate Historical Office. See JAH web review by Drew E. VandeCreek. Reviewed 2004-06-01. This collection of essays about the history of the U.S. Senate begins with a brief overview (900 words). More than 140 “historical minutes” (300 words) discuss interesting events in the Senate from 1789 to 1980. Events include the caning of Charles Sumner in 1856, the 1914 ban on smoking in the Senate chamber, and a 1935 Huey Long filibuster. The complete texts of 15 oral histories, of 40 to 700 pages, of retired senators and Senate staff members are available and 15 others may be ordered. The oral histories cover 1910 to 1984 and deal with a wide range of issues, including the desegregation of the staff, the McCarthy hearings, preparations to impeach Nixon, rhetorical rules of debate, and the impact of computers on the work of the senate. Staff members include pages, the Sergeant at Arms, aides, administrative assistants, and the first African-American Government Documents Clerk. A collection of 26 essays (500 to 3000 words) discuss Senate procedure, leadership, officers of the Senate, and general information, such as the development of the oath of office. Other essays include 2,400 words on the president pro-tempore and a 1,300 word essay on the 1959 committee, chaired by John F. Kennedy, that designated the five most outstanding senators in American history. The site also includes a section of frequently asked questions about the Senate and links to a directory that provides a 150-word biography of every senator and vice president as well as many congress people and staff members. Statistics about majority and minority leaders and the practice of switching parties are also provided. The minutes of Senate Republican Conferences from 1911 to 1964 and Senate Democratic Conferences from 1903 to 1964 are available in their entirety. Visitors may also read the full texts of eight lectures given by statesmen, such as George Bush and Senator Robert C. Byrd as part of the Leaders Lectures series established in 1988 by Trent Lott. The site is easy to navigate and will be useful for research in the history of American political institutions. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2008-10-06.
Virginia Historical Society Virginia Historical Society. Since 1831, the Virginia Historical Society has been collecting materials documenting the lives of Virginians. This website provides information for researchers and the broader public interested in visiting the Society’s headquarters in Richmond, including a collections catalog, finding guides to specific collections, and information about physical exhibitions. The website also includes significant digital holdings. While only five percent of the collection has been digitized, this represents more than 5,000 items, grouped into 14 digital collections. These collections include maps, drawings, paintings, postcards, prints and engravings, 19th century photography, as well as topical collections on African Americans, the Civil War, the Retreat Hospital in Richmond, Virginia’s manufacturing of arms, the 1852 Virginia General Assembly Composite Portrait, the Reynolds Metal Company (forthcoming), the Garden Club of Virginia (forthcoming), and selections from the Society’s ongoing exhibition, The Story of Virginia. The entire collections catalog is keyword searchable, and includes an option to limit the search to digitized materials. Resources Available: TEXT, IMAGES. Website last visited on 2009-02-15.