ERIC Number: ED199168
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1980
Artifacts and the American Past.
Schlereth, Thomas J.
Ten essays are presented which suggest rationale and methods for involving students of American history in first hand research using primary source material. The book is intended for classroom and extra curricular use by teachers and students of American studies on the high school, college, and adult education levels. It can also be of use to people in museums, historical village communities, and historical societies as they seek to develop and implement educational programs. The essays represent a sampler of teaching and research techniques which have been developed and tested over a period of five years in American studies courses on the college level. The essays discuss ways to examine and interpret history using a wide variety of artifacts, including historical photographs, mail-order catalogues, maps, historic museums, historic houses and villages, local archaeological artifacts, and records of landscape architecture at different periods throughout history. Students are involved in a variety of activities, including undertaking research in photographic archives; tracing changes in an area by following photographs of different building types; unmasking deliberate distortion in photographic evidence; tracing the evolution of the mail-order catalogue in America; analyzing etiquette at different periods as it was mirrored in mail-order catalogues, advice manuals, and self-improvement primers; comparing land surveys from various eras; reconstructuring city plans and maps based on incomplete cartographic evidence; and researching symbolic meaning of historic houses from whatever documentary materials may survive. (DB)
Descriptors: Adult Education, American Studies, Essays, Higher Education, Historiography, North American Culture, Postsecondary Education, Primary Sources, Research Tools, Resource Materials, Secondary Education, Social History, United States History
American Association for State and Local History, 1400 Eighth Avenue, South, Nashville, TN 37203 ($13.95, AASLH members, $10.50).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Books
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: National Endowment for the Humanities (NFAH), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: American Association for State and Local History, Nashville, TN.