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Herb - social history for every classroom

menuAmerican Social History Project  ·    Center for Media and Learning

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An African American Remembers Growing Up in Segregated Louisiana

The Jim Crow system emerged during Reconstruction, when Southern legislatures controlled by whites adopted laws designed to deprive African-Americans of their basic rights and keep the races separated in nearly every sphere of social life. In this [...]

Item Type: Oral History
A Son Recalls How His Parents Survived Anti-Chinese Discrimination

In this interview, Thomas Chinn (1909-1997), an American-born son of Chinese immigrants, recalls the choices his parents made in the face of anti-Chinese discrimination and violence. Chinn was founder, publisher, and editor of the Chinese Digest, [...]

Chinese Family Associations Assist New Immigrants

Thomas Chinn (1909-1997) was the founder, publisher, and editor of the Chinese Digest, the first English-language weekly newspaper for Chinese Americans in the United States, and later the Chinese News. In this interview, Chinn describes the origins [...]

Chinese Immigrants Maintain Ties with Home

Thomas Chinn (1909-1997) was the founder, publisher, and editor of the Chinese Digest, the first English-language weekly newspaper for Chinese Americans in the United States, and later the Chinese News. In this excerpt from an interview, he [...]

A Son Remembers His Immigrant Parents' Struggles in America

In this interview, Thomas Chinn (1909-1997) recalls his parents' experiences as Chinese immigrants in white-dominated American society. Chinn was founder, publisher, and editor of the Chinese Digest, the first English-language weekly newspaper for [...]

A Worker Recalls Her Time at the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory

In this oral history conducted by historian Joan Morrison, Pauline Newman told of getting a job at the Triangle Company as a child, soon after arriving in the United States from Lithuania in 1901. Newman described her life as an immigrant and [...]

A Shoemaker Describes His Role in the Boston Tea Party

In 1773, the British parliament passed the Tea Act, which gave the British East India Company a monopoly on tea imports into the colonies. Angry colonists responded by refusing to allow ships carrying the tea to land or unload their cargo. In [...]

A Vietnamese General Remembers "Uncle Ho"

Vo Nguyen Giap (b. 1912) served as Vietnam's leading military commander during three decades of war against the French, Japanese, and Americans.  He was a strong supporter of Vietnamese independence and, like Ho Chi Minh, became a Communist [...]

Item Type: Oral History
A Bracero Enters Four Contracts in the 1950s

Rigoberto Garcia Perez was born in Michoacan, Mexico in 1934. His father lost land in the worldwide depression of the 1930s and became a bracero after the outbreak of World War II created a shortage of agricultural laborers in the United States. As [...]

Item Type: Oral History
Ex-Slaves Recall Sunday Meetings

Between 1936 and 1938, the Federal Writers Project conducted interviews with thousands of former slaves, part of a larger project to collect first-hand biographies of "ordinary" American people. The excerpts below are from two of those interviews, [...]

Item Type: Oral History

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