Teaching History Online
Number 117: 21st December, 2003
Spartacus Educational publishes Teaching History Online every week. The newsletter includes news, reviews of websites and articles on using ICT in the history classroom. Members of the mailing list are invited to submit information for inclusion in future editions of Teaching History Online. In this way we hope to create a community of people involved in using the Internet to teach history. Currently there are 33,175 subscribers to the newsletter.
The Home Guard: When the British and French armies were defeated in France by the Germans in May 1940 the future looked very bad. Britain was the last big country in Europe still fighting Hitler and faced the real threat of an invasion from the Germans across the sea from France. The British army had been badly weakened by the defeat in France so the government quickly set up a volunteer army to make Britain harder to invade. This was originally called the Local Defence Volunteers but was later known as the Home Guard. It was sometimes nicknamed 'Dad's army' because it was made up of volunteers who were too old to serve in the regular army. This excellent Public Record Office website takes a close look at the activities of the Home Guard during the Second World War.
National Archives: Since 1934, the National Archives has provided comprehensive records management support and archival guidance and services to the Federal Government in the United States. Its website contains several online exhibitions including: Picturing the Century (20th century photographs and photographers), Designs for Democracy (100 designs highlighting 200 years of Government drawings), A New Deal for the Arts (a unique selection of artwork, documents, and photographs highlighting Depression era Federal arts projects), Powers of Persuasion (posters from World War II) and The Special Relationship (documents and photographs of Churchill and Roosevelt describing the emergence of the Anglo - American alliance).
Conflict Archive on the Internet: This website contains information and source material on 'the Troubles' in Northern Ireland from 1968 to the present. There is also information on politics in the region and Northern Ireland society. New material is added regularly to the site and there are also frequent updates, so information on particular pages may change. The information at this site is divided into three main sections: Background to the Conflict, Key Events, Key Issues, Bibliographic Database, Conflict Studies and Directory of Researchers.
History Teacher Education Network: HTEN (The History Teacher Education Network in the United Kingdom) was established to promote the development of history teacher education. It also attempts to forge links and increase communication between history teacher educators in the UK and internationally and to give history teacher education a focus and an effective public voice and especially to establish links with other such associations to monitor, comment on and contribute to developments in the curriculum in history.
JFK Assassination Testimony: This website is an attempt to collect together the testimony of those who appeared before the Warren Commission and the House Select Committee on Assassinations. The material is organized under the following headings: Autopsy, Ballistics, CIA, Dallas Police Department, Dealey Plaza, FBI, Media, New Orleans, Oswalds, Parkland Hospital, Presidential Limo, Secret Service, State Department, Tippit Shooting and the U.S. Marine Corps.
History Matters Archive: This excellent reference site brings to the electronic realm scanned images of paper reports, transcripts, and other documents, along with streaming audio and photographs. Much of this material has been declassified since the passage of the 1992 JFK Assassination Records Collection Act. These new documents contain a wealth of surprising material which will change the debate about the Presidency of John F. Kennedy as well as his murder. Two main categories of electronic documents and related materials are now available. The first is records directly relating to the assassination of President Kennedy and its subsequent investigations, and includes much new material released by the Assassination Records Review Board. The second set consists of records related to Vietnam foreign policy during the Kennedy administration, which contain surprising "new" facts regarding 1963 policy.
History Student Online: Chris Turner (University College London) is the man behind History Student Online. He aims to promote scholarly discussion through forums and newsletters. History Student Online also accepts submissions for its own electronic journal, containing contributions from outstanding students and professional academics alike. It also features quizzes, reviews and an event calendar which anybody can add to, showing seminars, conferences and events happening around the world.
Sources for Building History is Jean Manco's guide to researching historic buildings in the British Isles. It explains how to find related manuscripts, maps and images, while pointing out some of the pitfalls of such sources. Sources for specific building types are given together with information on the type. A section of the website covers ecclesiastical sources. Subject bibliographies include dating, fabric, gazetteers, local history and materials. There are annotated links to relevant archives held by record offices, local libraries, museums, galleries and universities and online catalogues. The site also includes contextual material providing an introduction to town and village development.
Armored Units of the Russian Civil War: One of the most important conflicts of the 20th century, the Russian Civil War was the struggle that led to the formation of the Soviet Union. Following the overthrow of the Russian Provisional Government on 7 November 1917, the All-Russian Congress of Soviets met and handed over power to the Soviet Council of People's Commissars. Immediately forces began to assemble in opposition to the Bolshevik regime, and these became known as the Whites. This title examines the armour that they had at their disposal throughout the course of the war. It was a varied collection including British and French vehicles and, perhaps most famously, the armoured trains that enabled the Whites to dominate much of Siberia. (David Bullock & Alexander Deryabin, ISBN: 1841765449, £8.99)