Patrick Henry’s “Give Me Liberty or Give me Death”, 1775

We have included an excerpt along with questions and answers from his passionate speech given on the eve of the revolutionary war.

It is short and well-suited for use as a primary source since the language is easily understandable.  This can help students feel good about reading a “real speech”.

For more on this era check out our Colonial Era, Revolutionary War, and Early US History Review PowerPoints and our classroom ready simulation games:

Tuesday in November

Elections are explained in this 1944 film.

Although it is narrated rather dryly, the historical footage and information provided make it worthwhile.

President Grant, Congress, and the Fifteenth Amendment

President Grant sent a telegram to Congress in March of 1870 announcing the ratification of the 15th amendment, an action he acknowledged was breaking protocol.

He wanted to emphasize the importance of the amendment, as he believed it to be the single greatest action taken since the founding of the nation.

We have included a copy of the telegram, as well questions and answers for students.

For more on this era check out our Reconstruction PowerPoint.

Sam Houston’s Presidential Inaugural Speech, Republic of Texas, 1836

The Republic of Texas lasted just under a decade from 1836-1845.

This speech was given just after the victory by Houston’s troops in the battle at San Jacinto.

Tensions were still high and the future of the newly independent nation was uncertain.

We have included a copy of the speech as well as questions and answers for students.

For more on this era check out our US History PowerPoints Expansion and Reform: 1829-1860 and Causes of the Civil War; as well as classroom simulation games American Economy 1823-1860, Famous Inventors Game, and  Famous Presidents Game, Part 1: Washington to Garfield.

The French Revolution and A Tale of Two Cities

Analyzing documents is an important part of any history curriculum. That is why our PowerPoints include lessons, often with historical speeches and letters.

Our French Revolution PowerPoint contains an excerpt from A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens.

It helps students understand that reading literature is also part of being a historian since authors tend to editorialize stories with their own slant on current events.

We have included a copy of an excerpt, questions, and answers.

1906 San Francisco earthquake

In reaction to the 6.9 quake in Mexico and southern California this afternoon, we are posting a video showing the devastation to San Francisco in 1906 after a large earthquake estimated to be in the range of 7.7-8.25 was felt for hundreds of miles and resulted in thousands of deaths.

Although you may not show the film in its entirety, it would be useful when discussing any natural disaster as it was one of the worst in U.S. history. In contemporary times, Hurricane Katrina has been compared for its economic damage.

For more on the early 20th century see our U.S. History PowerPoints:

World History PowerPoints: