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The Authentic History Center - Michael Barnes

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The Authentic History Center provides a catalog of popular culture images and primary sources from the 1600's throughout American history (final timeframe is 2009 - 2020). Explore by...more
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The Authentic History Center provides a catalog of popular culture images and primary sources from the 1600's throughout American history (final timeframe is 2009 - 2020). Explore by time period: World War I, The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb, Great Depression, and more. Artifacts range from posters to magazine covers to cartoons. There are also audio and video recordings. You can "hear" what popular music was like in the lead-in to World War II, for example. Many topics include a great deal of text to read and explore. Choose a specific time period and category such as photographs, music, or technology to explore content. Most sections include a short overview of the time period with links to artifacts. What makes this collection especially useful is the sorting and grouping they have done for you so you can choose and experience an era. A few of the video clips are hosted on YouTube. If your district blocks YouTube, they may not be viewable. Most of the materials are Creative Commons licensed, so they can be used in multimedia projects if you give proper credit. Click the CC icon on the page where you find a clip or source to see specific rights.

tag(s): 1600s (20), 1700s (36), 1800s (73), 1900s (73), 20th century (59), civil war (134), cold war (30), great depression (28), photography (125), vietnam (35), world war 1 (72), world war 2 (150)

In the Classroom

The Authentic History Center is excellent for making history real. Share this information on your projector or interactive whiteboard (or speakers) during lessons on any time period of US History. Play Bing Crosby singing "God Bless America" to help students feel the pre-WWII era or nationalism. Make the Angry era of McCarthyism real by letting student explore the collection. Include this entire collection on your class web page for students to access both in and out of class. Use the sources for students to experience a multi-sensory tour of any era in U.S. history and create their own project about it incorporating the artifacts (with proper credit) and their own explanations. You could modify student learning by having students create a simple infographic sharing their findings using Displayr, reviewed here. Or, have students create online posters about an era individually or together as a class using a tool such as Web Poster Wizard, reviewed here, or PicLits, reviewed here. Enhance learning by having students create timelines using Timeline JS, reviewed here. Timeline JS offers the option to upload and add photos, videos, audio, Tweets, and Google Maps making it interactive. If you participate in National History Day, this site is an outstanding start point. If you are the advisor for your high school play, bookmark this site as a great source for authentic era images and sounds. Need background music for a play (or video) set during WWII? Here it is!

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