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Herb - social history for every classroom

menuAmerican Social History Project  ·    Center for Media and Learning

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"Bandit's Roost"

Jacob Riis—a journalist and photographer of industrial America and himself a Danish immigrant—exposed the deplorable conditions of late nineteenth-century urban life in his widely-read book, How the Other Half Lives, first published in [...]

"A Settlement house worker visits a newly-arrived family"

Progressive reformers established settlement houses to aid new immigrants and instill American middle class values. Some social workers were sympathetic to the immigrants' problems and helped publicize their plight. Others were critical of immigrant [...]

"Bananas Being Loaded into Waiting Carts"

New York dockworkers unload bananas from a cargo ship into a waiting cart in this early twentieth-century photograph by maritime photographer Edwin Levick. Their work was dangerous—the fatality rate for longshoremen was higher than for any [...]

"Studying insects in a classroom at the school"

Two photographs from 1941 show the glaring contrast between so-called "separate but equal" schools in Greene County, Georgia. In this first photograph, white children examine glass-encased butterflies in a well-lit, modern classroom. (See related [...]

Black Students Crowd into Jim Crow School in Georgia

Two photographs from 1941 show the glaring contrast between so-called "separate but equal" schools in Greene County, Georgia. In this photograph, black students must make do with antiquated, ramshackle facilities and, according to the original [...]

"East shakes hands with West at laying last rail"

The completion of the Transcontinental Railroad is celebrated with a handshake, a bottle of champagne, and the laying of a golden railroad spike in Promontory Point, Utah, on May 10th, 1869. After years of speculation, government backing, corporate [...]

Women Protesters Rally at the March on Washington

In this photograph taken at the August 28, 1963 March on Washington for Jobs and Freedom, women marchers carry signs supporting a variety of demands.

"Operating a hand drill at Vultee-Nashville"

In this rare color photograph taken for the Office of War Information, a "real life" Rosie drills on the side of a dive bomber plane. Nearly three million women worked in defense industries during World War II, including thousands of African [...]

"Detroit, Michigan. Riot at the Sojourner Truth homes, a new U.S. federal housing project"

This photograph, made for the Office of War Information, is part of a larger series documenting racial conflict surrounding the construction of the Sojourner Truth homes in Detroit, Michigan. White neighbors and tenants of the new federal housing [...]

"African-American children in exhibit area"

Herbert Randall's photographs vividly capture the energy, spirit, and excitement of Freedom Summer in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. Here, some of the 650 or so Freedom School students display their artwork with a gallery decorated by the children's [...]

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