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American History

General American History

Library of Congress
Search all Library collections (including American Memory)
Browse the full array of digitized collections
American Originals: Treasures from the National Archives
The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is the nation's record keeper. Of all documents and materials created in the course of business conducted by the United States Federal government, only 1%-3% are so important for legal or historical reasons that they are kept by us forever.
Chronology of U.S. Historical Documents
An online collection of documents that have had an important impact on American History. Organized chronologically from 1215 (The Magna Carta) to the present.
Our Documents
Presented by The National Archives, this site presents 100 milestone documents chosen "to reflect our diversity and our unity, our past and our future, and mostly our commitment as a nation to continue to strive to "form a more perfect union."
History Central
Good general History site with links covering both World and American History topics. Key American History areas include: A history of American Presidential Elections (with specific information on each election), a section on historical primary source Documents featuring over 600 primary documents in American History and History Maker Biographies covering Presidents, First Ladies, Civil War and Revolutionary War Generals, as well biographies of the 500 most important people of the 20th century.
Internet Public Library: Presidents of the U.S.
A very well organized site containing extensive information on all United State Presidents and their administrations. Background information, election results, cabinet members, notable events, and some points of interest are included for each of the presidents. Links to biographies, historical documents, audio and video files, and other presidential sites are also available.
RootsWeb is the oldest and largest free online community for genealogists. The site contains extensive interactive guides and numerous research tools for tracing family histories. This link here connects you to their extensive directory of Local History sites and Genealogy links organized by State.
The History Place
The History Place describes itself as "a private, independent, Internet-only publication based in the Boston area that is not affiliated with any political group or organization. The Web site presents a fact-based, common sense approach in the presentation of the history of humanity, with great care given to accuracy." Topic areas include American Revolution, U.S. Civil War, American Presidents, World War 2 and the Vietnam War. Some interesting photographs and limited number of personal histories as well.

African-American History

African-American Mosaic
A Library of Congress Resource Guide
African-American Web Connection
Site offers categorized and extensive links to Afro centric websites.
African American World
Your online guide to African American History and Culture presented by the Public Broadcasting System (PBS). From Sojourner Truth to Jacob Lawrence, discover the courage and talent that shaped the African American experience.
Africans in America
Resources from the PBS series includes documents, essays, and teacher's resources.
American Memory from the Library of Congress
A link to the Library's collection of African American material available online.
American Slave Narratives : An Online Anthology
A collection of interviews with former slaves who discuss their lives before and after freedom.
Art About Florida - The Highwaymen
In the 1950's, a small number of African Americans in the Fort Pierce area dedicated their talents and livelihoods to painting the Florida landscape. this site tells their story through words and through their art.
Black Archives of Mid-America
A database of more than 800 online images that chronicle the African-American experience in the Mid-West.
Black Facts Online
" Internet Search Page that lets you look up Black History information for any day of the year or just by looking for matching words. Black Facts is designed to make it easy to find out interesting and inspiring facts about events impacting people of African descent."
Celebrate Black History
Discover more on Black History with timelines, trivia, famous African American biographies, and more as celebrates Black History Month.
CNN: Black History Month
CNN offers a site celebrating Black History Month called "A Legacy of Black Talent". Included here are 27 short profiles (one for each day of February) of men or women who have made a lasting contribution, ranging from literature, music and the arts to science and technology.
Encyclopedia Britannica Guide to Black History
This site presents a vast array of articles, hundreds of images, and a wide assortment of audio clips, film clips, and multimedia presentations. The timeline traces two millennia of black history, and the browse features enable the visitor to pinpoint the central people, places, topics, and events covered in black history.
Encyclopedia Britannica Guide to Black History: Biographies A-Z.
Entries for over 500 African Americans from Hank Aaron to Whitney M. Young, Jr.
Frederick Douglass Papers
2,000 items from the Library of Congress' American Memory collection
Freedmen’s Bureau Online
Includes selected extracts from the records of the Bureau of Refugees, Freedmen and Abandoned Lands, including records of operations, records relating to murders and outrages, freedmen’s marriage certificates, records relating to freedmen’s labor, monthly reports of destitute discharged soldiers and their families.
Historic Places of the Civil Rights Movement
This National Register of Historic Places Travel Itinerary tells the powerful story of how and where the centuries-long struggle of African Americans to achieve the bright promise of America culminated in the mid-20th century in a heroic campaign we call the modern civil rights movement Black History Month
Features links covering History, Timelines, Contemporary Issues and an assortment of Special Features covering subjects from African American Quotations, Negro Baseball League to African American Literature and the Harlem Renaissance.
Jacksonville Public Library: Black History Month Web Page
Prepared by Librarians from Jacksonville Public Library's newest collection - The African American Collection! This site contains a wonderful array of links focused on African American History, Biography, Science and other topics. Also presents information about Black History and prominent African Americans in Florida, as well as links to African American resources available through The Jacksonville Public Library. The African American Collection will be housed on the 4th Floor of the New Main Library when it opens in 2005.
National Civil Rights Museum
Take a virtual tour of the museum in Memphis.
National Underground Railroad Freedom Center
Celebrating the historic themes of the Underground Railroad as they relate to contemporary society through commemoration, education and inspiration.
The HistoryMakers
The objective of this site is to build awareness about African Americans that have made significant contributions to American life, society and culture, through stories that focus on slavery, the abolitionist movement, the civil rights movement, music sports and entertainment. A timeline of important events and birthdays of significant African Americans is also included.
Stamp on Black History: A Black History Tour
This site is available via The ThinkQuest Library; a free educational resource featuring over 5,500 websites created by students around the world as part of a competition. This particular site offers insights on the contributions made by Black Americans profiled on United State postage stamps. These stamps show black Americans as explorers, settlers, slaves and as patriots in vigorous pursuit of freedom, liberty and equality. this site uses the postage stamps in an attempt to tell a story of a way of life developed by black people in a white society

Colonial America

Internet Public Library: Colonial America
The Librarians maintaining the Internet Public Library developed a guide designed to help students of all ages find resources on colonial American history and culture by using both internet and print resources. The primary focus of this site is to find resources that detail life in colonial America leading up to but not including the American Revolution.
The American Revolution
This site was created by H-Net, Humanities and Social Sciences Online and also serves as the official companion site to PBS' documentary series Liberty! It offers a detailed bibliography section covering many different types of resources, a section containing important essays on the American Revolution, as well as a strong Resources area with links and selected online sites noted.
The History Place: American Revolution
Offers a detailed timeline covering dates and key events from explorations and the beginning of the settlement of North America through 1790 and t he birth of the United States.

American Civil War

The American Civil War Page
This site is maintained by the University of Tennessee and contains a sizeable directory of links about various topics concerning the Civil War. The directory is divided into 13 main subject headings to help the user find information more easily.
Civil War Campaign and Battle Maps
Battle maps organized chronologically for all the major campaigns and available for review online through the History Department, United State Military Academy (West Point).
Internet Public Library: Civil War History
This link offers users a Pathfinder or a detailed listing of print and online sources they might use to find quality information about the Civil War, either for serious research or for just looking up a quick fact.
United States Civil War Center
The Center operates as a Special Collections Department of the Louisiana State Library System, and acts as a clearinghouse for Civil War related information on the Web. To date, the Center has indexed over 9,000 links. This information is organized under three main areas: Civil War Information for articles, Civil War Resources for links, databases, images or other forms of information, and a small section on History Institutes.
Valley of the Shadow: Two Communities in The Civil War
This site seeks to approach the study of the Civil War in a slightly different way - by detailing life in two American communities, one Northern, one Southern, from the time of John Brown's Raid through the Reconstruction Era. The site contains thousands of original letters and diaries, newspapers, speeches, census and church records left by the people of Augusta County, Virginia and Franklin County Pennsylvania that reflect their feelings and experiences during these turbulent years.

Westward Expansion

Gold Rush
"California as We Saw It." Exploring the California Gold Rush
The Gold Rush American Experience
PBS' Award Winning Learning Program
Westward Ho!
The American Studies Department of The University of Virginia offers two books online that cover the early westward expansion of the United States:

The Journals of Lewis & Clark
Details the Journey of Meriwether Lewis and William Clark and their "Corps of Discovery" as they trekked across the continent to the Pacific from 1804 to 1806.
The Oregon Trail
An 1846 account by Historian Francis Parkman of his travels along the Oregon Trail.
The Oregon Trail
A more detailed site with sections covering Historic places along the Trail, Fantastic Facts about The Trail, and Trail Archives, complete with full text of Trail diaries and books.
PBS: The American West
Created as a companion to the Ken Burns' documentary of the same name, this PBS website offers a multimedia guided tour by proceeding chapter-by-chapter through each episode in the series. Also offered are selected documentary materials, archival images and commentary, as well as links to background information and other resources used to make the documentary. Other areas offer the user additional information and resources on the people, places, events that makes The American West such a fascinating subject for many.
Transcontinental Railroad
Transcontinental Railroad offers insights into topics in American history including the settling of the West; manifest destiny; contact and conflicts between Native Americans and white settlers; experiences of workers, including Chinese immigrants and Civil War veterans, in building the railroad; 19th century speculators and the rush to claim land; the Crédit Mobilier scandal and the backroom dealings that financed the railroad; the technical, mechanical, and engineering challenges of building steam locomotive routes across American terrain; the creation -- and, sometimes, abandonment -- of frontier boom towns; the use of nitroglycerin in construction projects; and the role of government in funding and overseeing infrastructure projects.