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Black History

February is traditionally "Black History Month". Many web sites have been created to help convey information on the contributions and experiences of African Americans to the classroom.

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A Quest for Full Citizenship

The African American Odyssey: A Quest for Full Citizenship showcases the African American collections of the Library of Congress, with more than 240 items, including books, government documents, manuscripts, maps, musical scores, plays, films, and recordings.

This on-line exhibit is divided into 9 sections...

  • Slavery--The Peculiar Institution
  • Free Blacks in the Antebellum Period
  • Abolition
  • The Civil War
  • Reconstruction
  • Booker T. Washington Era
  • World War I and Postwar Society
  • Depression, New Deal, and World War II
  • Civil Rights
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Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives

Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives contains more than 2,300 first-person accounts of slavery and 500 black-and-white photographs of former slaves. These narratives were collected in the 1930s as part of the Federal Writers' Project (FWP) of the Works Progress Administration, later renamed Work Projects Administration (WPA). The Library of Congress has digitized the narratives and scanned 500 original photographs to create this online collection.

Included in the collection are images of actual bills of sale, a bell rack (used to prevent slaves from running away), and portraits of former slaves.

Posting some of these images around the classroom could bring the reality of slavery home in a way that mere words will never do.

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Black History Figures, Events, Pictures & Videos

Each year in the United States, February is dedicated as Black History Month. What began as the grassroots effort of African-American historian Carter G. Woodson has grown into a national time to honor the triumphs and struggles of African Americans throughout history.

The History Channel has assembled a wide range of pictures, videos and accounts. looking at Black History and the origins of Black History Month. A large portion of the resources are contemporary, covering the last 75 years.

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Plantation Letters

This teaching resource includes digitized selections from the Cameron Family Papers, part of the Southern Historical Collection at UNC-Chapel Hill.

The Camerons regularly communicated by post with their family, friends, and business associates (overseers, tradespersons, and merchants). The level of detail provided in their personal communication provides a rich context for the study of antebellum plantation life in the southern United States.    

You can search for letters related to a particular theme, or browse available letters using the indexes.

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The Freedom School

In the summer of 1964, over forty Freedom Schools opened in Mississippi. These schools were part of Freedom Summer, a project of the Southern Civil Rights Movement, with the goal to empower African Americans in Mississippi to become active citizens and agents of social change.

This site archives the curriculum of the summer Freedom Schools, a series of documents that, taken together, was felt to offer the best example of a progressive, experiential curriculum that emphasized student-centered teaching and learning-by-doing.

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Patchwork of African-American Life

Patchwork indexes a number of other resources including treasure hunts, webquests, sample activities and more.

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