Civil War Maps provides an excellent opportunity for students to develop their language art skills. Using the maps, they can study advertising techniques and language. They can examine maps and newspaper articles to learn to write their own articles. Similarly, they may write first-person accounts from a soldier's perspective, based on accounts from American Memory collections and their own imagination. In addition, students can write biographies and depict historic events visually, through their own maps.
Included in Civil War Maps are maps created by publishing companies and sold to a market of citizens who were interested in the battles because of their family and friends' service in the war. To lure buyers, the maps often included advertisements promoting the map as the best of its kind or as one used by war soldiers.
For example, one popular publisher, James T. Lloyd, included extensive advertising on his maps. Students can search on the publisher's name to read some of these advertisements. Have them note what language, tone and style the advertiser has used. What message is the advertisement getting across? Does the student find it persuasive?
Students can then write their own advertisements for maps by browsing the collection's Title Index. Students can mimic and improve upon the language, tone and style used in Lloyd's maps.
This map includes the following promotional text: "Any one finding an error on this Map will be entitled to a copy, gratis, by writing to the Publisher."
Also included is the transcript from Gideon Welles, Secretary of the Navy, requesting a copy of a map and informing the publisher that Rear Admiral Chas. H. Davis is authorized to purchase a supply for his squadron.