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Saddled camel

[Detail] Saddled camel

Lesson Overview

Working in groups, students plan, take, and document a trip around the world in 1896 using World's Transportation Commission. This collection presents documentary evidence concerning the role of technology at the turn of the twentieth century and raises questions about European and American views of the world during the fin de siecle. These activities require students to penetrate Western point of view at the turn of the twentieth century and to explore Western perceptions and misperceptions of the non-Western world during the same time period.


After completing this lesson, students will be able to:

  • explore the Western point of view at the turn of the century;
  • identify Western perceptions of non-Western peoples at the turn of the twentieth century;
  • use Internet technologies to research and prepare a written and oral presentation;
  • utilize the tools of the historian in assessing primary sources; and
  • become familiar with American Memory.


Time Required

Three weeks

Recommended Grade Level

  • 6-8


  • World History and Cultures
  • Discovery and Exploration


  • Rise of Industrial America, 1876-1900


Eva L. Abbamonte and Della Barr Brooks