This is a photo of a family funeral in North Dakota in the 1890s. I talk about what I was curious about when I look at this photo. First question that occurs to me – Who is in the casket? How did that child die? Epidemic? Starvation? Wolves? Then, who is in this family? Why so many kids? How isolated is the family?
Primary and Secondary Sources
“the leavings, the shards, theremnants of people who oncelived and dont live any more." A definition of a Primary Source http://www.lib.washington.edu/subject/history/historyday/his.html
What is going on in this photo? What questions does it raise?Write a paragraph about this photo. Give two facts and twoopinions.
Why do we use primary sources in history? No bias, no viewpoint Only your interpretation Can give additional information Materials Textures Printing methods Technologies
What is a Primary Source?An informational source from the time of theevent Autobiographies Novels Diaries Objects from the time Documents Oral histories Eyewitness accounts Photographs Film footage Poems, art, music Laws Speeches Letters Newspaper articles
Does a Primary Source have to be the original material?No – it can be in another form, but it can’t be edited or interpreted in any way.For example,Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty or Give Me Death!” speech can be found in 100 Key Documents in American History
Questions to ask yourself when looking at Primary Sources Who wrote this? How do they know the information they are telling me? When did they write it? Why did they write it? Who did they write it for?
What are Secondary Sources?An informational source that analyzes the event. These sources often use several primary sources to compile the information. Biographies Encyclopedias History books Textbooks
Are Secondary Sources useful for CBAs?Yes – They provide the necessary background or context to be able to interpret Primary SourcesFor example,World Book 2005 or your Social Studies textbook can provide background information about the events leading up to Revolutionary War.
Beware of Bias! Is it possible for a Secondary Source to be completely objective?
Wikipedia’s entry on President BushThe following passage describes his National Guard service:In May 1968, at the height of the Vietnam War, he entered the Texas Air National Guard. He trained in the guard for two years, where he was among the last to learn to fly the F-102, a plane not used in Vietnam and due to be retired.While this could be true, why would it be important to know that he was “among the last to learn to fly the F-102”? Is this a commentary on President Bush flying an outdated plane? Is it an unbiased point of view?
Encarta’s entry on President Bush(note that Encarta lets people edit its pages but with editor approval)Upon completing college, [Bush] became eligible for the military draft. To meet his service obligation, Bush enlisted in the Texas Air National Guard in 1968. He told the admitting officer that he wanted to become a pilot like his father, who was a highly decorated Navy flier in World War II. He did his basic training at Lackland Air Force Base in Texas, and entered a pilot-training program at Moody Air Force Base Georgia. He received favorable reports from his superiors, attained the rank of second lieutenant, and was certified to fly the F-102 jet fighter during training missions in the South and along the Gulf Coast.Encarta doesn’t mention that President Bush being one of the last to fly the F-102, and instead notes patriotically how President Bush wanted to fly a jet like his father.
Where can I find Primary andSecondary Sources in my schoollibrary?OPAC Subject, Keyword, Power searchesOn-line Databases Nettrekker Elibrary ProQuestSearch Engines Use your favorite, but use it wisely