U.S. History Resource Review


U.S. History Resource Review

Below are some of our favorite online resources for teaching American history.  Check them out and make sure to post a blog entry responding to the following questions:

  1. What resource(s) did you find particularly engaging?  Why?
  2. What resource(s) would you use with students?  How?
  3. Are there any gaps in the resources available for this discipline?  In other words, are the resources available incomplete or do you see a need for any new resources to be developed?
  4. Please share any additional discipline-specific resources you have found or have used not listed on this site.

In addition to answering the above questions, you should also respond to other students’ posts.  You could either incorporate responses to other students’ posts in your own resource review or post separate responses, questions, etc. to other students’ posts.  Initial posts must be made by the Tuesday night prior to the class meeting.  You are responsible for checking the blog and responding to any additional questions or comments prior to the class meeting on Thursday.

US History Resources

Library of Congress
The Library of Congress is the largest, “bestest” archive out there.  A little difficult to navigate, the educators there have set up a site for teachers that make the archives and resources easier to find.  Make sure to check out the following:

 Virginia Center for Digital History
VCDH has some of the best online archives around.  We have highlighted some of the best projects below:

Living Room Candidate 
The Living Room Candidate contains more than 300 commercials, from every presidential election since 1952, when Madison Avenue advertising executive Rosser Reeves convinced Dwight Eisenhower that short ads played during such popular TV programs as I Love Lucy would reach more voters than any other form of advertising. This innovation had a permanent effect on the way presidential campaigns are run.

While PBS features documentaries an films of history, they have also developed a set of fantastic resources to be used in schools.  Check out the projects below as well as the “For Teachers” or Educators link.

Colonial Williamsburg 
One of the best “virtual” sites around, Colonial Williamsburg has set the bar for virtual fieldtrips.  Check it out!

Gilder Lehrman 
Gilder Lehrman provides some of the best content workshops in the summer.  Hopefully, you will be able to attend as you move to your very own classroom.  In the meantime, check out some of the great resources for teachers, including podcasts lectures from historians, traveling exhibits, featured documents  and “History by Era”.


Developed by David Hicks at Virginia Tech, this strategy teaches students to interpret historical sources by summarizing, contextualizing, inferring, monitoring and corroborating.

National Archives "Docs Teach"
Hot off the presses at the National Archives, a digital tool that assists students in "doing history" and connects up to Historical Thinking Skills (e.g. Chronological Thinking, Weighing the Evidence, etc.). Using the tools on site, students can upload primary sources into the various activites created for history classrooms.

History Matters
Designed for high school and college teachers and students, History Matters serves as a gateway to web resources and offers other useful materials for teaching U.S. history. Check out: