Library of Congress


The Library of Congress > Teachers > Additional Resources > Resources from Outside the Library > US History
  • Adeline Hornbek and the Homestead Act: A Colorado Success Story — A lesson based on primary sources explores women and homesteading in the late 19th century. From the National Park Service.
  • Alaska’s Gold — The State Library of Alaska presents student and teacher materials, including many primary sources, about the discovery of gold, gold mining, traveling to the gold fields, and daily life as a miner.
  • American Cultural History: The Nineteenth Century — Decade by decade analysis of cultural trends, from the Kingwood College Library.
  • American President: An Online Reference Resource — While many of the presidents of this era are among the more obscure, those interested can learn a great deal at this site from the University of Virginia’s Miller Center.
  • Americans in Paris: 1860-1900 — This site presents the art created by American émigrés in Paris in the decades following the Civil War, stating that “The experience of Paris transformed American art.”
  • Online University: The American Old West — Maps of the major overland trails, photos of frontier towns, population data on Native American tribes, and other information.
  • Amusing America — The San Francisco Public Library presents this exhibit on commercial entertainment—amusement parks, dance halls, international expositions, and the like—of the late 19th century.
  • Architecture: The City Beautiful Movement — The Encyclopedia of Chicago provides this overview of the City Beautiful Movement of the late 19th and early 20th centuries.
  • Brooklyn Daily Eagle Online — This project of the Brooklyn Public Library provides more than 140,000 pages of primary source materials, providing insight into a Northern community in the period from 1841-1902.
  • Central Pacific Railroad Photographic History Museum — Extensive collection of photographs related to building the Central Pacific Railroad, as well as its early years of operation. Includes some now (1997) and then (1868) comparison photos.
  • The Classroom Electric: Dickinson, Whitman, and American Culture — A “constellation” of websites related to the two title authors and the culture of the United States in the late 19th century. Many provide access to primary sources and scholarly analysis.
  • Dime Novels and Penny Dreadfuls — An introduction to the literary genre that became popular in the second half of the 19th century. From Stanford University’s library.
  • Edison Papers — Extensive collection related to the work of Thomas Alva Edison.
  • Ellis Island Photographs from the Collection of William Williams, Commissioner of Immigration, 1902-1913 — The title describes well this collection from the New York Public Library. Included are photos of individual immigrants and of the facility at Ellis Island.
  • Erik A. Hegg Photographs — More than 700 photographs of the gold rushes in the Klondike and Alaska (1897-1901), including many depicting life on the Alaskan frontier.
  • Flights of Inspiration — In-depth information and activities on the early history of flight from the Franklin Institute Science Museum and the Science Museum, London.
  • The Freeman School: Building Prairie Communities — Part of the National Park Service’s Teaching With Historic Places program, this site looks at how one-room schools served communities on the Great Plains in multiple ways.
  • The Frontier in American History — The classic thesis by Frederick Jackson Turner.
  • Frontier House — Background information and lessons on life on the frontier in 1883. Developed to support the PBS “reality” program of the same name.
  • Gilded Age Era Lesson Plans — Nine document-based lesson plans on such topics as civil service reform, lynching, temperance, and the gold standard. From the Illinois Historical Digitization Project.
  • The Great Chicago Fire and the Web of Memory — The Chicago Historical Society and Northwestern University present this detailed site about the Chicago fire.
  • History of Jim Crow — Teaching resources, numerous background essays, images, and links on segregation and discrimination from the 1870s to the 1950s.
  • History Place: Child Labor in America 1908-1912 — Photographs of child workers in a variety of industries taken by Lewis Hines and reproduced with his original captions, plus a background essay on Hines and his work.
  • Mark Twain and the American West — A lesson plan looking at how Mark Twain became the nation’s first celebrity author and how his work shaped perceptions of the West.
  • The 1906 San Francisco Earthquake and Fire — The National Archives presents primary source documents regarding the destruction of San Francisco as a result of the 1906 earthquake, as well as information about the rebuilding of the city.
  • Nineteenth-Century Technology — A themed issue of the Gilder Lehrman Institute’s History Now journal presents lessons and essays on railroads, photography, medical advances, Edison, and women and the early Industrial Revolution.
  • Progress Made Visible: American World’s Fairs and Expositions — The library at the University of Delaware highlights six expositions held between the Civil War and World War I, with the technological and economic prowess of the United States as a major theme.
  • Race and Place: An African American Community in the Jim Crow South — This site provides narrative on life in Charlottesville, Virginia, in the early 20th century, as well as access to the historical data on which the narrative is based. From the University of Virginia.
  • Scribbling Women — This unique site presents several radio plays written by and about women at the turn of the century; the extensive teaching materials help teachers place the plays in their historical context and provide discussion questions and teaching strategies. A project of the Public Media Foundation.
  • Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire — Book excerpts, newspaper articles, photographs, audio survivor interviews, and other resources on the tragic fire that killed 146 workers, mostly young women, in 1911. A project of the Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation and Archives, designed as a high school-level research tool.
  • Turn of the Century Posters — Hundreds of posters created in the late 1800s and early 1900s provide insights into cultural history of the period.
  • Urbanization [PDF-151KB] — The Environmental Literacy Council presents this high school unit that focuses on how late 19th-century urbanization affected the natural landscape.
  • Women Working, 1800-1930 — Primary source documents on women's role in the U.S. economy in the 19th and early 20th centuries. From Harvard University.
  • World’s Columbian Exposition: Idea, Experience, Aftermath — A detailed look at the 1893 exposition, provided by Julie K. Ross.