Welcome to our Blog:
Learning at the National Heritage Museum-
Using Primary Sources to Reconstruct the Past
Purpose- Primary sources are original records created either at the time historical events occurred, or later, in the form of memoirs and oral histories. They provide the raw material to reconstruct the past, and are accessible in many ways. Much can be and has been adapted for distribution on the World Wide Web. If you are an educator looking for a tool to familiarize yourself and your students with different types of primary sources, where to find them, how to read them, and what they tell us, you will find many resources right here, including descriptions, ways to access primary sources, and examples of how they can be used. In addition, there are corresponding assignments ready to download for use in your elementary classroom, or as a way to reinforce your visit to the National Heritage Museum. And there is a useful timeline, a vocabulary list, and other illustrations for additional reference.
Mission- This weblog was created by the National Heritage Museum to familiarize educators and students with different types of primary sources, where to find them, how to read them, and what they tell us. While the examples used are from Lexington, Massachusetts during the 18th century, primary source research is relevant for any community during any time period.
Audience- The idea for a blog grew out of the Summer 2007 Teacher Institute funded by the Massachusetts Society of the Cincinnatti. At the conclusion of the Institute, participants recommended creating a forum where the Museum could extend the lessons from the Institute while serving a broader audience- including students. At the same time, the Museum and visitors to the blog could share successful strategies and applications for the classroom.
Welcome to the online learning community inspired by their ideas and enthusiasm.
Categories- To help in navigating the following posts, the primary sources are illustrated with the help of the exhibition "Sowing the Seeds of Liberty", and are organized as follows:
Documents: Manuscripts, public...vital, tax, clerks, probate, court, land military
Documents: Manuscripts, private...journals, letters, account books, memoirs
Images: Drawings, paintings, engravings, photography...portraits, landscapes
Artifacts: household, work, political, civil, religious, military
Assignments were developed by a project team in 2004 to correspond with the exhibition "Sowing the Seeds of Liberty," which tells the story of our early American history and the birth of a new nation. Who were the people who supported and fought during the Revolution? What were their daily lives like, and how do they compare with our lives today? What can we learn? To print any of the assignment sheets, you should save each image to your hard drive by right clicking, then choose the save option. Once on your hard drive, you can insert the image into a word document for sizing and printing, or open it in your photo shop program for sizing and printing.
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