Welcome to the AK-CSS Members Forum! Please sign up to join the discussions.

Lesson 8

This is where you will tell us about THE ONE exhibit, collection, or interactive website you reviewed thoroughly (after just poking around in many) for today's lesson. 

I am hoping each of you chooses a different one, but of course there are no guarantees and you won't be marked down for choosing the same one as someone else.  Just go with your heart and mind! 

You need to be a member of Alaska Council for the Social Studies to add comments!

Join Alaska Council for the Social Studies

Email me when people reply –


  • Sorry Folks back from Mexico and long week of school,  The documents I chose to study are the ones from the 1906 San Francisco Earthquake.  I was 3rd generation San Franciscan.  I was born in 1964, my dad was born in 1914 & my grandfather, who I knew well until I was 12, was born in 1881.  He always told me about the earthquake because I was fascinated by it.  My grandmother born in 1885 was pregnant with my uncle during the quake.

    The Archives building is right by Golden Gate National Cemetery, where my parents are buried.  I spend a lot of time in San Bruno, California because my sister lives there.  (It's the city where SFO is at).

      This lesson spurred me on to look for pictures from the quake.  I came upon a site called outsidelands.org about the working class neighborhoods in western SF.  I found a picture describing where my grandparents lived after the earthquake.  My grandfather always told me they went to Dolores Park.  He made money because he was well off enough to have a horse and buggy, he rented them out.

       Here are some photos that I found that makes what he told us come to life.  :)

    My grandparents mid 1960's.


    The pics below the top pic is waaaaaay after the quake.  The bottom pic is right after the quake.  This is where they went.  :)



  • I read the descriptions for every collection that NARA displays on what appears to be their comprehensive index page ( http://www.archives.gov/exhibits/exhibits-list.html ) and perused any that I thought might contain materials useful for Alaska Studies.  

    Spent time searching systematically through The National Archives: Documented Rights , The National Archives Experience: Digital Vaults , Eyewitness , Panoramic Photography , A People at War , Picturing the Century , Treasures of Congress , & The Way We Worked collections.  

    Other than 20 misc. records of photos, documents and drawings tagged to Alaska in the Digital Vault, the only other hit that I found was an interesting 1920's photo of the railroad bridge that connected the Kennicott copper Mine with the port of Cordova.  I found this in the Panoramic Photography Collection:


    My take-aways from this exercise:

    • Lot's of cool collections out on NARA.gov, but Alaska is too young and remote to play much of a role in most aspects of American history, so doesn't show up very much in these collections...
    • Many (I'm guessing most) collections don't have search fields for finding specific topics, but many have "site maps" which offer a strategic glimpse of what is in the collection.
  • I am exploring Eyewitness group and wish there was a lot more to choose from as these are really neat to look at.  I am really hoping to teach a Holocaust and Genocide class next school year and like the one entitled “Scenes From Hell” from Pfc. Harold Porter on the Atrocities at Dachau Concentration Camp.

    The background information is good just for that reason but when you click on the next tab and see the actual letter that he wrote, that make’s it real.  I do appreciate that the whole letter is there.  The additional pictures provide more realism.

  • This lesson opened up so many interesting links to research. It was difficult to choose just one exhibit or collection to explore. I was drawn to the Eyewitness Exhibit since I have always been drawn to biographies and historical novels. These eyewitness accounts, all twenty six of them were fascinating. They brought to light the human, personal side to important events in history.

    I was especially intrigued by the accounts of Marie Adams: "Internment of American Civilians in the Philippines, 1945," Pfc Harold Porter: Atrocities at Dachau Concentration Camp, 1945," John Boston "An Escape from Slavery, 1862," Kapitan Leutnant Walter Schweiger: "Sinking of the RMS Lusitania, 1915," whoops, I might as well list them all! These exhibits weren't all comprehensive, most only showing a few pages of their accounts which only piqued my interest all the more to find the complete report. The exhibit includes digital copies of original correspondences and diaries with transcribed excerpts, photos, prints, and audio and video recordings. 

    The following are examples from John Boston "An Escape from Slavery, 1862."



  • I looked at a few of the exhibits as I was so excited to see them with so much information just at the click of a button, but then focused in on Powers of Persuasion: Poster Art From WWII, as I thought this could be  great way to make history really come alive with students. You could use this in an art class, a  digital photo class, etc. and students could make their own posters that would represent the times that they were studying, etc. It's a great collection that could easily be turned into a history lesson, whether you are teaching on WWII or another time in history as students could create posters for their time based on what they learn in this collection. 

    I think we are all familiar with the "We Want You" poster and the Rosie the Riveter poster, but there are some really amazing finds in this collection. It was also interesting the amount of thought that was put into what type of poster was created, for what purpose, and how it was designed to really speak to the people. It states that Public Relation Specialists helped to decide how to create certain posters, for example this poster below which they say played into the public fear of the enemy.  WARNING! Our Homes Are in Danger Now!--Our Job Keep 'Em Firing

This reply was deleted.