The Library’s new World War I primary source set
Shots ring out on the streets of Sarajevo. Uncle Sam tells recruits that he wants them for his army–and declares that it’s time to round up undesirables. Women face danger in stateside munitions factories and on the battlefields of Europe. A soldier writes in his diary about the last bullets of Armistice Day.
Teachers can help their students explore these moments and many more using the Library’s newest primary source set, World War I. This set brings together primary sources that document a war that was like no other, and that brought about tremendous political, social, and technological changes. From newspapers, photographs, and political cartoons to poems, recordings, and sheet music, these historical artifacts bring to life an era in which the lyrics of popular songs debated the decision to go to war; posters and cartoons posed questions about the nature of loyalty to one’s country; and soldiers’ notebooks prosaically described terrifying new mechanisms for waging war.
In addition to primary sources, this set also includes background information and teaching suggestions that support student inquiry into the many questions the war offers. The set is also available as a free interactive Student Discovery Set for iPads that allows students to annotate and analyze the primary sources.
The Library of Congress World War I topic page
To take a deeper dive into the Library’s rich collections related to the war, visit the Library of Congress World War I topic page. To commemorate the 100th anniversary of U.S. entry into the war, the Library is offering exhibitions, lectures, symposia, film programs, recordings, publications, veterans’ stories, educational tools, and research guides to its remarkable World War I resources.
How are your students exploring the events and legacy of World War I? Please let us know in the comments.
As school children, many of us learned “Fall back; spring forward,” but every spring and fall, some will struggle to adjust, bemoan the change, and wonder why we as a nation tamper with time twice a year. Relatively few of us, however, think of daylight saving time as part of a war effort. Examining primary […]
As part of our commemoration of the one hundredth anniversary of U.S. involvement in World War I, the Library has launched a new World War I topic page bringing together the richest resources in our collections, along with information about special events and upcoming programs.
Join reference specialist Abby Yochelson, of the Library of Congress Humanities and Social Sciences Division, as she discusses “Books Go to War: Armed Services Editions in World War II” based on the Library’s America Reads exhibition.
Following the Allied victory in World War I, the United States entered a period of rapid change, experiencing changes both in its stature as a global leader and changes from social experiments, including universal women’s suffrage and the prohibition of alcohol. One widely discussed topic of this time was “Americanism,” the idea that certain unique qualities, traditions, and ideals set apart the United States.
Throughout history, music has been used for celebrations and for memorial events; to sway opinion or highlight a specific point of view; or to encourage people to vote for a particular political candidate.
How can we best document an analysis of film as a primary source? The complex motions, multiple scenes, and pacing can be challenging aspects not only to students analyzing film, but even more so in communicating their analysis and sharing it with others.
The United States has many symbols including the bald eagle, the Statue of Liberty and the Liberty Bell. However there is one that has been featured in a recruiting poster, served as a symbol of patriotism and is a personification of the government of the United States of America.
Winter appears to have a firm grip throughout the country. Everyone is bundled up against the frigid winds. The trees are bare and the sky is grey and gloomy. Need a reminder that spring is not far away? Start planning your school garden.
How can you share your response to a major world event? In the 19th and early 20th centuries, you might have put your thoughts down in a poem and sent it to a newspaper. The 1918 entry of the United States into World War I triggered an especially dramatic outpouring of these personal responses in verse.