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New World War I Teacher Resources from the Library of Congress

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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
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.

Comments (4)

  1. Captivated

  2. I’m a veteran in Education.I was in the Army and work for BCPS,now.My grandfather,Sam Fox was an Army E5 in WWI.He was a teacher for BCPS and may have been the individual Fox holes were named after.The students like this era to learn from.We still like to visit LoC library.

  3. Is there any way that those in charge/creators of lessons such as this can make it available on something other than an ipad? My school does not have access to ipads for technology (in fact we are limited in our overall access to technology), yet this is a resource I would love to use with them!

    • We’re glad to hear that you’d find this resource useful! Fortunately, the World War I primary source set is available for anyone with a Web browser here.

      We’re always thinking of other platforms for content and teacher tools, and are glad to have your input!

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