The Project Gutenberg eBook of A Guide to Methods and Observation in History

This ebook is for the use of anyone anywhere in the United States and most other parts of the world at no cost and with almost no restrictions whatsoever. You may copy it, give it away or re-use it under the terms of the Project Gutenberg License included with this ebook or online at If you are not located in the United States, you will have to check the laws of the country where you are located before using this eBook.

Title: A Guide to Methods and Observation in History

Author: Calvin Olin Davis

Release date: March 24, 2007 [eBook #20893]

Language: English

Credits: Produced by Brian Janes and the Online Distributed
Proofreading Team at






Assistant Professor of Education in the University of Michigan



Copyright, 1914,
By Rand, McNally & Company

The Rand-McNally Press



The outlines herewith presented have grown out of the necessities of a course conducted by the writer in the training of teachers in the University of Michigan. The course has been styled "Methods and High School Observations in History." It has been open only to seniors and graduate students who have specialized in history and who expect to teach that subject in high schools. The work has consisted of one class meeting per week for eighteen weeks, and of twenty hour-observations of history teaching in the Ann Arbor High School. The outlines, therefore, were designed to serve as a guide to these observations and as a basis for subsequent discussions.

In order that the students might have a deeper appreciation of the meaning of history and the various conceptions that have been held regarding it, and in order that they might possess at least a general knowledge of the place history has occupied in the schools, the elements composing historical events, and the values attributed to historical study, it seemed appropriate to preface the special queries respecting method by some introductory suggestions of a general character. This fact explains the inclusion of such material as is found in the first few pages of the present booklet.

In the hope, therefore, that students of Education in other colleges, universities, and normal schools may find suggestions in the material here brought together, and that teachers in active school work may also receive some practical help therefrom, the writer has been encouraged to place the outlines at the disposal of the public. If they shall prove of service to his colleagues and their students elsewhere, his aim and purpose will be fully met.

Calvin Olin Davis

University of Michigan
April, 1914


Introduction iii
I. Definitions 1
II. Aspects of History 1
III. Source Material for History 2
IV. Conceptions of the Purpose and Content of History 6
V. Notable Influences and Persons that have Modified the Conception of the Meaning of History in the Last Century 7
VI. History in the Curriculum 9
VII. Value and Aims of History 11
VIII. Elements of History 18
IX. Methods of Approach to the Study of History 22
X. The Process of Learning History 23
XI. The Organization of History in High Schools 25
XII. The History Teacher's Preparation and Equipment 26
XIII. The Pupil's Preparation and Equipment 27
XIV. The Classroom 28
XV. The Assignment of the Lesson 29
XVI. The Study Lesson 30
XVII. The Recitation Lesson 31
XVIII. The Review Lesson 35
XIX. The Lesson in Civics 35
XX. Some Principles of History Dogmatically Stated 36
XXI. Some Positive Guides and Suggestions 37
Bibliography on Methods 40
A Selected List of American Historical Fiction 42




I. Definitions.

1. History is the science of the development of men in their activity as social beings.—Bernheim.

2. History is the biography of a political society or commonwealth.—Arnold.

3. History is the story of man living in social relations in the world.—-Hinsdale.

4. History is a record of the actions of men.—Anon.

5. History is past politics.—Freeman.


1. Which of the above definitions appeals to you most? Why?

2. Are there any criticisms to be made respecting any of the above definitions?

3. What common idea runs through all the above definitions?

4. Quote at least one other definition of history.

5. Formulate for yourself a thoroughly satisfying definition of history.


II. Aspects of History.

1. Military.

2. Political and Constitutional.

3. Ecclesiastical.

4. Economic, Industrial, and Commercial.

5. Educational.

6. Literary.

7. Social.


1. Which of the above mentioned aspects should receive the chief emphasis in the elementary school? In the high school?

2. Would the constituency of the schools affect the answer?

3. Would the year in which the course is offered in the high school affect the answer?

4. Can you name other factors that would affect the answer?

5. Precisely what phases of history would be included under each of the above aspects?

6. Do the aspects mentioned exhaust the categories?

7. So far as you have observed, are the practices in the high school, respecting the aspects of history to be taught, in accord with your ideals and theories?


III. Source Material for History.

1. Primary Source Material.

(a) Monuments, inscriptions, buildings, tablets, columns, coins, tools and utensils, tapestries, pottery, implements, and all archæological and antiquarian material.

(b) Legal documents, e.g., statute books, charters, petitions, declarations, decrees, orders, court records, proclamations, treaties.

(c) Literary forms, e.g., manuscripts, notes, books, diaries, letters, paper money, newspapers.

(d) Narrative material, e.g., biographies, chronicles, memoirs, and accounts of customs, superstitions, ceremonials, etc.

2. Quasi-Primary Source Material, or the Auxiliary Sources of History.

(a) Historical geography, involving a consideration of the "origin, meaning, distribution, and changes of geographical names."

(b) Ethnology and sociology.

(c) Geology, paleontology, and physical geography.

(d) Paleography, or the science of ancient writings.

(e) Diplomatics, or treatises on official documents.

(f) Epigraphy, or the science of inscriptions.

(g) Numismatics, or the study of coins.

(h) Languages.

3. Secondary Authorities.

(a) Textbooks.

(b) Large historical works, e.g., Parkman's, Bancroft's, McMaster's, Fiske's.

(c) Biographies of historical personages, e.g., The Life of Cavour; The True George Washington; Bismarck.

(d) Compendiums of History, e.g., Green's Short History of the English People.

(e) Special treatises of historical epochs, e.g., Thwaites' The Colonies; Wilson's Division and Reunion.

(f) Encyclopædic articles, e.g., "Waterloo" in Encyclopædia Britannica; Cyclopedias of History; Paul Monroe's Cyclopædia of Education.

(g) Dictionaries of historical names and references, e.g., Low's Dictionary of English History or Larned's History for Ready Reference, 6 vols.

(h) Philosophical, legal, and constitutional treatises bearing on history, e.g., Bryce's American Commonwealth; Ostrogorski's Democracy and The Party System; Montesquieu's The Spirit of the Laws.

(i) Historical novels, e.g., Hugo's Les Miserables; historical dramas, e.g., Shakespeare's Merchant of Venice; historical poems, e.g., Longfellow's Courtship of Miles Standish; historical essays and monographs, e.g., articles in the Historical Review and other contemporary magazines.

(j) Writings on local history, e.g., Cooley's History of Michigan; Putnam's Primary and Secondary Education in Michigan; Michigan Pioneer Collection Articles.


1. How can primary source material be employed by teachers of history in the elementary and high school?

2. To what extent ought it to be employed?

3. Would the course of history offered, the year in which it is taught, and the character of the school and its pupils, affect the answer? If so, how?

4. What place in the high school has such a book as Hill's Liberty Documents?

5. To what extent do the observations made by you coincide with your views respecting the use of primary source material?

6. Make a list of ten or more "source materials" you personally could use in your teaching of history. Why would you select the "material" you have?

1. How can the quasi-primary source material be used in elementary schools and high schools?

2. What phases of such material do you plan to use?

3. What is the basis for your selection?

4. Could every high school teacher of history make effective use of the material you mention?

5. What deduction follows from your answer?

6. What have been your observations respecting the employment of material of this kind? Would such material lend itself to use in every recitation period?

 1. Should more than one textbook be used in a given course in history? Why?

 2. Does the grade in which the subject is taught affect the answer?

 3. How can the larger historical works, biographies, and compendiums of history be used in the high school?

 4. Is it practicable to have "special reports" from such sources made daily?

 5. Should the teacher expect all pupils to make frequent "special reports"?

 6. In how far is it feasible to supplement the textbook by means of definite class-readings?

 7. Should class-readings be assigned on a page basis, or on a topical basis, or be left to individual selection and spontaneous effort?

 8. Should exact references be given or should pupils be encouraged to master the art of finding for themselves, within given limits, the supplementary data sought?

 9. Precisely how can a high school teacher make use of such a treatise as Montesquieu's The Spirit of the Laws?

10. Make a list of at least twenty selections from historical novels, historical dramas, poems, essays, and monographs that you, as a teacher of history, could employ in the high school. What fact or event would you attempt to illustrate by each of these selections?

11. What use should high school teachers and pupils make of material dealing with local history?

12. What constitutes a good textbook in history for high school use?

13. Make a list of some of the modern textbooks on each of the following phases of history: (a) Ancient; (b) Mediæval and Modern; (c) English; (d) French; (e) American; (f) Civil Government. What would be your first and your second choices of texts in each of these six divisions, and why, specifically, would you make those choices?

14. What texts are used in the high schools you have observed?

15. What school authorities ought to select the texts to be used in the high school?

16. How far have your observations in the high school been in accord with your ideals and theories with respect to the kinds and uses of historical "material" of all kinds?


IV. Conceptions of the Purpose and Content of History.[1]

1. As polite literature: the Greek and Roman idea, e.g., Herodotus, Thucydides, Xenophon, Livy, Sallust, Cæsar, Tacitus.

2. As annals and chronicles only: the Mediæval idea, e.g., Gregory of Tours, Froissart, Einhard.

3. As a basis for governmental policies and as a means of interpreting literature: the Renaissance idea, e.g., Machiavelli, Petrarch, Boccaccio.

4. As a basis for theological dogma and religious practices: the Reformation idea, e.g., Luther, Melanchthon, and the Jesuits.

5. As a basis for interpreting legal institutions and practices: the idea of the 17th century, e.g., the Jurists.

6. As a foundation for philosophical speculation and a means of discovering the deeper influences that affect humanity and hence influence action and produce events: the idea of the 18th century, e.g., Voltaire and Montesquieu. [Voltaire held that human nature is the same under all circumstances and at all times, and hence sought to judge historical events by abstract universal standards. The "natural man" was his ideal man. Montesquieu, in The Spirit of the Laws, sought to show that events in history are but the manifestation of spiritual law, as revealed in conditions of climate, geography, soil, natural resources, racial temperament, etc.]

7. As a foundation for personal reactions, e.g., criticisms, interpretation, moralizing, personal philosophizing, or as mere facts entertainingly told: the idea of the early 19th century.

8. History as science, i.e., as explanatory of existing social institutions, customs, beliefs: the idea of the 20th century.

1 (Return)
The fundamental purpose of historical writing has ever been the recording of events. In addition, however, different ages have stressed other aims.


V. Some Notable Influences and Persons that have modified the Conception of the Meaning of History in the Last Century.

 1. Romantic School (late 18th century and early 19th century), with its deep reverence for the Middle Ages. Hence sympathetic treatment of history.

 2. Herder (1744–1803), with his philosophy of "becoming" or development. Herder sought to show that all events are but the manifestation of a deity striving to work out an ideal universe. Hence all events must be judged by the standards of the time and country in which they appear, i.e., be judged by the characteristics of the age and people affected.

 3. Hegel (1770–1831) carried the theory of Herder to more complete conclusions.

 4. Niebuhr (1776–1831), "one of the most acute historical critics and philologists of modern times." Niebuhr was among the first to emphasize the need of a critical examination of source material, and of the building up the past out of these data.

 5. Ranke, Leopold von (1795–1886). His aim was to set before the reader the entire picture of events "with their causes, relations, and consequences."

 6. Guizot, François P. G. (1787–1874). His great influence was in extending the scope of history so as to include universal history, not merely national history, or the history of isolated and local events.

 7. Carlyle (1795–1881), through his keen insight into character and his love of hero-worship, introduced the vividly realistic and picturesque element.

 8. Buckle (1821–1862) included economic forces in his studies and sought the spirit of history apart from particular men and events.

 9. Macaulay (1800–1859) presented historical philosophy and the laws and theories of government in eloquent and fascinating style, thus bringing to the popular mind an interest that had heretofore been slight.

10. Froude (1818–1894), in charming literary style but with carelessness of detail, emphasized the personal element in history and set himself the ideal of "simply recording human actions without theorizing theron."

11. Stubbs (1825–1901) "introduced the critical study of mediæval sources into England," employed exact methods of work, and gave impetus to constitutional history.

12. Green (1837–1883) depicted the progress of the life of the people and dealt only incidentally with the political history of the state.

13. Schmoller (1838– ) emphasized the economic aspects of history.


VI. History in the Curriculum.

1. Pre-Renaissance Period: Incidental historical study made in connection with the study of biography and literature.

2. Renaissance Period: Historical studies pursued as auxiliary to the interpretation of the classics.

3. Post-Renaissance Period in Europe.

(a) Heraldry and local, contemporary historical incidents and events taught in Ritterakedemien after 1648.

(b) In Germany, the systematic study of history in schools really dates from about 1806, though an independent status was given history in the universities (particularly in Göttingen) in the 18th century.

(c) In France, historical study was introduced by Guizot (about 1833) but received no great attention until after 1860, though there was nominally a chair of history in the Collège de France after 1769.

(d) In England, none but incidental attention was given historical study until after the middle of the 19th century, though there was a professorship of ancient history at Oxford in 1622, and professorships of modern history were found at both Oxford and Cambridge in 1724.

4. Historical Study in America.

(a) History was taught incidentally by professors of philosophy in most of the universities from their founding.

(b) Yale had a professorship of ecclesiastical history in 1778–1795.

(c) Harvard established the first professorship in history (in the general sense of the term) in 1839, Jared Sparks being the first incumbent.

(d) Columbia University and the University of Michigan established chairs of history in 1857.

(e) Yale established a chair of history in 1865.

(f) The first seminary in history was established at the University of Michigan in 1869 by Prof. C. K. Adams.

(g) General history and ancient history were found in normal schools after about 1850.

(h) In secondary schools (first in academies, then later in high schools) history was taught as a separate study from about 1830. General history or ancient history received almost the sole emphasis, though English history was sometimes taught. In 1847 Harvard first began the practice of requiring history for admission.

(i) History work in elementary schools grew out of the study of geography, and became a separate study about 1845.

(j) Until about 1893 the only course given really serious attention in the high school was that of Ancient History in the classical course. The courses in General History, English History and American History were, for the most part, bookish, superficial, and devitalized.

(k) The Madison Conference (instituted by the N. E. A. in 1892) gave the first concerted impetus to the serious study of history in American public schools.

(l) The Report of the Committee of Ten of the N. E. A. in 1893 contains extensive and almost revolutionizing suggestions for improving the organization, study, and presentation of history in the schools.

(m) The Report of the Committee of Seven of the American Historical Association in 1896 supplemented the contemporary efforts at reform.

(n) The Report of the Committee of Five of the American Historical Association in 1907 embodied the best ideas which the decade had developed looking to further improvement of historical study and teaching.

(o) The Committee of Eight has still more recently sought to perfect the art of studying and teaching the subject.


VII. Values and Aims of History.

1. Psychological.

(a) It develops the power of constructive imagination through the visualizing of scenes, events, and characters, and the effort to put oneself back into the past.

(b) It trains the reasoning faculty through the necessity of analyzing data, seeking causes and effects, and following historical development wherever it may lead.

(c) It develops the power of associative memory through the necessity of bringing facts into their essential and definite relations.

(d) It trains the judgment, through requiring the mind to make estimates respecting

(1) The probability of the fact recorded.

(2) The possibility and probability of accurate statement on the part of the one recording the event.

(3) The efficiency of the adjustment of means to ends.

(4) The righteousness of the act.

(5) The motives and ideals that dominated the act.

(e) It develops the power of comparison through demanding attention to similarities and differences in motives, agents, means, processes, events, places, dates, and results.

(f) It develops the power of classification—of coördinating and subordinating data.

(g) It develops the habit of forming generalizations from detailed facts.

(h) It gives a real conception of the meaning of time, through the considerations of man's slow evolution in social relations.

(i) It gives ability to take a large view of life's affairs and interests,—to see things in their essential relations.

2. Social, Political, and Civic.

(a) It gives habits of analyzing the aims and motives of men, and the means they employ to attain their ends, i.e., it gives insight into character and hence makes social adjustment easier.

(b) It develops tolerance for the opinions, convictions, and ideals of others, and tends to prevent hard, dogmatic, and uncompromising judgments and attitudes.

(c) It gives appreciation of the civic and political institutions of to-day—their origin, development, and purposes—and hence teaches the rights and obligations that are inherent in citizenship.

(d) It inspires patriotism "through arousing noble emotions that revolve about inherited responsibilities." ["A study of the times that tried men's souls tends to form souls that are capable of enduring trial."—Hinsdale.]

(e) It reveals the slow evolutionary processes that operate in social life, and hence tends to encourage one to put himself in harmony with the laws of social evolution and to strive for social betterment while he at the same time is patient with existing conditions.

(f) It breaks down provincialism through revealing the relations, common traits, and interdependence of one community with another, and one nation with all other nations.

3. Moral and Religious.

(a) It habituates to weighing motives and actions as regards their righteousness.

(b) It implants ideals of personal character by disclosing the personal qualities and moral accomplishments of men and women who have, in large ways, affected history, and who have in consequence received lasting honor and renown.

(c) It teaches us to see something of the intangible forces that override personal preferences and hinder the direct application of principles sincerely held.

(d) It inspires a love of truth.

(e) It develops charity for the past; forbearance for the present; and faith and hope for the future.

4. Æsthetic (appealing to the sense of order, beauty, and proportion).

(a) It stirs to an appreciation of the beauties of man's handwork in sculpture, architecture, painting, musical and literary form, industry and commerce.

(b) It reveals the beauties of human genius in adapting institutions and governmental forms and processes to desired ends.

(c) It refines and enriches the emotions by bringing them into contact with the emotional expressions of the race.

(d) It develops literary expression, and a taste for good reading.

(e) It thrills and inspires, and incites to more thorough-going efforts to attain ideals of proportion and order.

5. Practical.

(a) It aids in interpreting many allusions in literature and current expressions.

(b) It vitalizes geography.

(c) It gives a perspective for viewing all other branches of study, and hence for a fairer comprehension of them.

(d) It makes the experiences of travel intelligible.

(e) It gives a fund of information for use in conversation and public utterances.

(f) It breaks down provincialism; develops toleration, sympathy, and human interest; and hence makes intercourse with fellowmen more frictionless and cordial. (See Social Value.)

(g) It creates an interest in the resources, raw materials, tools, and processes of one's vocation, and fosters pride and contentment with labor.

(h) It explains racial, economic, religious, and social cleavages and prejudices, and makes for a truer democracy of feeling.

(i) It gives insight into legal, governmental, and business institutions and forms, and hence makes easier the adjustment to governmental and business requirements. (See Social Value.)

6. Cultural or Personal.

(a) It gives an elevated viewpoint from which better to observe all aspects of civilization to-day and thereby to comprehend them more fully.

(b) It furnishes an inexhaustible source of pleasure and satisfaction for leisure hours and for the consolation of old age.


 1. Can you name any other "values" that should be included in the study of history?

 2. Does the study of history yield equal value in each of the groups mentioned?

 3. Which one of the groups of "values" seems to you most important and hence should receive greatest emphasis?

 4. Can you suggest other items under each group of values?

 5. Illustrate how a teacher might proceed to exercise the power of (a) imagination; (b) reasoning; (c) memory; (d) judgment; (e) comparison; (f) classification; (g) generalization.

 6. From your observations do the teachers consciously strive to realize these values in the class?

 7. Do the teachers seek to get back of the records of events and to discover the motives, ideas, and ideals that produced those events? What is the method used to do so?

 8. Do the teachers assume "hard, dogmatic, and uncompromising" attitudes toward the interpretation of the facts, or do they give students opportunity to use their own judgment?

 9. Does it seem to you that students really do put themselves back in imagination and live through the period they are studying? What is the secret of attaining this ideal?

10. Are students constantly seeking for "causes" of the historical events? How does the teacher secure this effort?

11. Are the textbook facts remembered largely as words, or do the students really enter into the spirit and significance of them? What evidences have you for your conclusions?

12. Does rote memory or associative memory receive the emphasis?

13. Does the teacher correlate the history lesson with other subjects of study? If so, how is this done?

14. Does the teacher correlate the history lesson with the life interests of the pupils? If so, how is this done?

15. Does the teacher explain the institutions, forms, and procedures of the past by reference to their counterparts of to-day? Are such interpretative means employed with sufficient frequency, completeness, variety, and clearness?

16. Does the teacher inspire patriotism? If so, how is this accomplished?

17. Is the work of such a character that students are infused with a spirit of toleration, sympathy, and respect for others outside their immediate circle of interest?

18. Does the teacher encourage the weighing of motives and actions with reference to their righteousness? Do you approve of this practice?

19. Does the teacher seek to have the students "be like" noble characters in history? What can you say for and against this practice?

20. Ought the teacher to strive consciously to use history to develop ethical ideas in pupils?

21. How does history exert a religious influence on its students?

22. Does history "inspire a love of truth" to any different degree than does any other subject of study?

23. Does the teacher seek to bring out the æsthetic values of history? How does she do so?

24. Should appeal be made frequently to the emotional side of pupils' natures?

25. Is adequate opportunity given pupils to develop literary expression? How is this done?

26. Are you satisfied that a taste for historical reading is being developed in the pupils? What observations make you think as you do?

27. Does the teacher so conduct the class work that the "practical values" of history are realized?

28. Does the class really appear to enjoy the work? What evidences have you of this?

29. Does the class feel that the recitation period is a delight or a bore? What evidences have you that this is so?

30. Which phases of the work receive the greatest emphasis: (a) acquisition of facts, (b) mental training, (c) moral training, (d) arousing interest in independent historical study, (e) development of patriotism and public spirit, or (f) power of judging men? Do you approve of this distribution of emphasis?

31. Which of the following aims should the teaching of history in the high school emphasize, viz., (a) giving to youths the knowledge and power for the right interpretation of the civilizations of the past, (b) assisting youths to an understanding of the development and significance of present-day civilizations and aiding them to adjust themselves to these civilizations; (c) giving a perspective from which to pre-view, in part, the trend of the future and to plan one's career accordingly?

32. From your observations do the teachers stress the events, or the motives, the ideals, and the ideas that gave rise to the events? What would be your aim here?

33. Of what does thinking consist?

34. Are pupils in the classes observed expected to think for themselves? Are they encouraged to express their personal reactions to the facts presented?

35. What guiding principle should a high school teacher or textbook writer set for himself in selecting from the infinite mass of data recorded the material to be used in the high school, (a) that which reveals the development of personal liberty—political, religious, economic; (b) that which reveals the development of democratic institutions; (c) that which reveals the growth of altruism or the humanitarian spirit; (d) that which reveals the development of commerce, industry, and finance; (e) that which reveals the development of thought and the institutions that aim to develop and train it; or (f) that which reveals the development of social relations and activities?


VIII. Elements of History.

1. Time Element: The when, or chronology.

(a) Units of measurement: day, month, year, decade, century, administration, sovereignty, ministry, epoch, era, and the unit determined by the movement of the events themselves as they naturally cohere.

(b) Dates as agencies for assigning definite position in time.

2. Place Element: The where, or geography.

(a) Units of location: continent, nation, empire, kingdom, state, section, region, district, town, city, county, and the geographical groups or centers formed by the events themselves as they cohere.

3. Physical Element:

(a) Climate and meteorology affecting

(1) Character of the people.

(2) Occupations.

(b) Topography, affecting

(1) Movement of races, armies, productions, etc.

(2) Size and boundaries of states.

(3) Location and character of cities.

(4) Industries.

(5) Trade and transportation.

(c) Natural resources, soil, and products, affecting

(1) Livelihood.

(2) Character of people.

(d) Violent and infrequent phenomena of nature, earthquakes, storms, eclipses, comets, volcanic eruptions, etc., affecting

(1) Beliefs and actions of people.

4. Human Element.

(a) The national or race spirit.

(b) The religious emotions and aspirations.

(c) The sentimental interests.

(d) The Zeitgeist or spirit of the age.

(e) The genius of individuals.

5. Superhuman Element.

(a) The moral order in the universe, or the seeming law that rules thoughts, feelings, and actions of men—the law of cause and effect.


 1. Which time-units are most commonly used in the classes you have observed? Do you approve of the custom?

 2. What advantage is gained from the use of such units over what is gained in using other units?

 3. Are there any of the units mentioned that ought to be used sparingly, if at all?

 4. Does the teacher observed stress dates sufficiently? Does she over-stress them?

 5. Under what circumstances should a date be learned?

 6. What is the best method of getting pupils to remember dates?

 7. How many dates ought to be required in any course in history in the high school?

 8. What principle of selection ought to guide in the choice?

 9. Is it wise to require the learning of some dates for the recitation period only with the expectation that they shall then fade from the mind?

10. Is it wise to drill on dates frequently?

11. What is the value of memorized dates?

12. What would be your views respecting the following list of dates (learned in their full significance) as the only fixed required dates for the entire high school course: b.c. 1000; 776; 594; 500; 459; 323; 264; 146; 59; 31; a.d. 313; 395; 476; 527; 622; 732; 800; 843; 962; 1066; 1095; 1215; 1400; 1453; 1492; 1517; 1588; 1598; 1603; 1609; 1620; 1648; 1688; 1776; 1789: 1815; 1830; 1848; 1861; 1867; 1871; 1898.

13. Does the teacher always seek to connect historical events with geography?

14. Is such connection real or merely verbal?

15. What methods are used to bring about this permanent association of event and place in the minds of the pupils?

16. What "unit of location" is chiefly used? Is this wise?

17. What is the real importance of stressing geography while studying history?

18. Are students expected to make use of outline maps?

19. How many such maps does each student make during the semester?

20. Are the maps made during given recitation periods under the supervision of the teacher, or at the convenience of the students? Which is the better plan?

21. Do the students devote much time to map-making?

22. Do they merely "color" the map, or do they fill in all important geographical and historical items?

23. Are maps ever drawn, roughly, on the blackboards by either teacher or pupils? If so, is there decided merit in so doing?

24. Are wall maps used frequently? If so, who indicates locations—teacher or pupils?

25. Is it advisable to conduct the class in person to near-by historic places?

26. Would it be wise to employ analogously formed geographical territory that is familiar to the students to vivify and interpret far-distant historical places?

27. Does the teacher seek to impress the importance of "physical elements" in shaping history?

28. Does the teacher emphasize this element of history sufficiently?

29. How, in detail, can such influences be revealed to high school students so that their real significance can be recognized?

30. Is the significance of national or race spirit in producing history sufficiently emphasized by the teacher?

31. Can you give an illustration of its notable operation?

32. Has the influence of religious emotions and aspirations been shown by the teacher in its full significance?

33. Can you give an illustration of the complete modification of history because of "sentimental interests"?

34. Are such modifications somewhat common and important?

35. Does the teacher impress this fact upon his pupils?

36. Does the teacher make clear the significance of the Zeitgeist, or spirit of the age, in shaping history?

37. How much attention is given to the study of notable characters in history?

38. Ought biography to occupy a more important place in the high school course in history?

39. How is such study secured in the school you have observed,—through collateral readings by the class, individual reports, or incidental classroom discussions?

40. Does the teacher sufficiently stress the fact that all history is but the operation of cause and effect?

41. Are students required to seek for causes back of the events?

42. Are students encouraged and expected to trace causes through the various sequences of effects?


IX. Methods of Approach to the Study of History.

1. Chronologically, since there is a continuity in the subject, and cause precedes effect. "The childhood of history is best for the child, the boyhood of history for the boy, the youthhood of history for the youth, and the manhood of history for the man."—S. S. Laurie, Sch. Rev. 4:650.

2. Counter-chronologically, i.e., from the present time and immediate surroundings to remote ages and distant peoples.

3. Spirally, i.e., covering the entire field of study in an elementary manner; then repeating the course on a more advanced plane; then taking up the work a third and fourth time, supplementing and expanding with each new attack.

4. Biographically, i.e., by means of biographies only.

5. Topically, i.e., tracing the development of particular elements in history, continuously and uninterruptedly, from the early stages to complete forms.


1. Which, to you, seems the best approach to the study of history?

2. May several of the above-mentioned modes be employed simultaneously?

3. Is it largely true that the personal or biographic appeals most to the child; the speculative, to the boy; the vitally and concretely constructive, to the youth; and the critical and philosophical to the adult? If so, what should be the character of the work in history in the high school?


X. The Process of Learning History.

1. Acquiring and relating detailed facts.

2. Formulating a mental picture of the events.

3. Analyzing the conditions and determining the vital, distinguishing characteristics.

4. Getting back of the outer forms, visible expression, or the vital facts to the real life of the people—their ideals, ideas, emotions, and beliefs.

5. Discovering the motives that produced the events considered.

6. Deducing the principles that operate in human relations.

7. Applying those principles to contemporary civilization to-day, and foreshadowing the probable trend of society in the future.

8. Holding consciously to the fact that history is dynamic, not static, i.e., that all historical material constitutes a unity that is revealed under the two laws of continuity and differentiation.

"There are no breaks or leaps in the life of a people. Development may hasten or may slacken, and may seem to cease for a time, but it is always continuous; it always proceeds out of antecedent conditions, and if it be arrested for a time it begins again at the point where it ended."

"Since the essence of history is the real life of a people—their ideas and feelings—history develops as ideas and feelings develop. But thoughts and feelings never exhibit themselves repeatedly in the same forms, but take on new modes of expression in the very process of growth."—Mace.


 1. Does the teacher observed lay emphasis on details as ends in themselves or as means to other ends?

 2. Is there a "richness" of details or is there a dearth of them?

 3. Are details presented in a vivid manner, with many gripping tentacles, or are they set forth in bold, uninteresting forms only?

 4. Are the details intimately fused or correlated?

 5. Is effort made to get each pupil to develop a mental picture of the scene represented by the details?

 6. When the image is fashioned, is an effort made to discriminate and to abstract the dominant characteristics?

 7. Is effort made to get at the spirit of the historical fact, and to discover the motives that operated to produce it?

 8. Are generalizations and principles of human thought, feeling, and conduct deduced from the study?

 9. Is effort made to test the validity of such principles among social relationships of to-day?

10. Does the teacher make history appear what it is, i.e., a ceaseless development, a unity, or does she leave the impression among the pupils that history is a mass of disconnected dead facts?


XI. The Organization of History in High Schools.

  Plan 1 Plan 2 Plan 3
9th grade}
10th grade}
General History Ancient History
Med. & Mod. History
Anc. & Med. Hist.
11th grade}
12th grade}
American History English History
U. S. Hist. & Civics
Modern History
U. S. Hist. & Civics


  Plan 4 Plan 5 Plan 6
9th grade Loc. Hist., Civics and Industries Ancient History Recent history
  Local Civics
  Local Indust.
10th grade Ancient History Med. & Mod. Hist. {Indust. Hist. ½
{Commer. Hist. ½
Ancient History
11th grade Med. & Mod. Hist. {Eng. History ½
{U. S. History ½
Mod. & Med. or
Eng. History
12th grade U. S. Hist. & Civics {U. S. History ½
{Civics ½
U. S. History


 1. Which of the above plans appeals to you most? Why so?

 2. What is the plan of organization in the school observed?

 3. What courses are prescribed, and what are elective? Do you approve?

 4. How many recitation periods per week are allotted to the work in each course? Is this wise?

 5. Is there one period per week devoted to "unassigned" or "unprepared" class work?

 6. If so, how is the period employed?

 7. Do you approve of such a period as a regular feature of the course?

 8. What justification is there in making the first year's work consist of "Local History, Civics, and Industries"?

 9. What argument is there for placing Ancient History in the 12th grade, and making it an elective study?

10. Is the work in Advanced Civics presented in a separate course, or is it correlated and interwoven with the work in U. S. History?

11. What arguments can you give for and against the practice?

12. What is the scope and aim of each of the courses Of history you have observed?


XII. The History Teacher's Preparation and Equipment.

 1. Has the teacher the kind of personality you could wish for yourself?

 2. Is her voice melodious and pleasing?

 3. Has she winsome manners?

 4. Is she sympathetic with her students?

 5. Does she show distinctive qualities of leadership?

 6. Has she evidently had a good general training in literature, sociology, philosophy, biology, and psychology?

 7. Has she evidently had extensive and special training in history and political science?

 8. Has she had professional training in educational psychology, history of education, methods, and general administration of school work?

 9. Is she tied to the textbook?

10. Does she have a fund of explanatory and illustrative material at her command?

11. Is she accurate, positive, and confident?

12. Has she a sense of humor and of the fitness of things? Has she self-control, or does she, for example, use sarcasm and ridicule?

13. Has she clearly prepared herself anew for the lesson in hand? What evidences have you of this?

14. Does she inspire her pupils? How?

15. Is there good discipline? If so, how is it secured?

16. Does the teacher seem to be familiar with local history, local geography, and both local and general industrial, political, and social conditions?

17. Does she seem to be familiar with the local library and its equipment?

18. Does she know her pupils—their interests, home life, and ambitions?

19. Does she possess enthusiasm, energy, optimism, sympathy, imagination, force, incisiveness, tact, judgment, geniality, social graces, courtesy, and kindliness?

20. Does she grasp the subject in its unity and entirety?

21. Can she tell a tale simply and pleasingly?

22. Is she interested in current events?

23. Does she possess a clear insight into character and life?

24. Has she traveled?


XIII. The Pupil's Preparation and Equipment.

 1. Have the pupils evidently had a good elementary school training?

 2. Do the pupils give evidence of having had previous historical training in the high school? What is the basis of your conclusion?

 3. Have the pupils thoroughly prepared for the day's recitation?

 4. Have they apparently confined themselves to the text, or have they gone outside this for material?

 5. Have they "studied the lesson together"? Do you approve of such study?

 6. If pupils show they have not sought to prepare the lesson well, what procedure does the teacher follow? Do you approve?

 7. Have the pupils "outlined the lesson"? Is it well that they should do so?

 8. Apparently, have the pupils been shown how to study, i.e., how to prepare the work most advantageously? What was the mode of doing this?

 9. Have the pupils attacked the lesson because it was made to appear vital to the solution of some really interesting problem?

10. Have the pupils really gotten behind the facts to the spirit of the movement?

11. Have the pupils apparently attempted to correlate geography with the history? What evidences have you of this?

12. Have the pupils acquainted themselves with all unusual words and phrases used in the text?


XIV. The Classroom.

 1. Is there anything distinctive about the classrooms you have observed that suggests their special uses?

 2. Are sittings arranged in fixed and regular forms, or is it possible for the class to gather about the teacher's chair in a "social" group?

 3. Are there good wall maps in the room?

 4. Are there atlases, globes, and geographical dictionaries at hand?

 5. Are there reference books of common use?

 6. Does the teacher's desk contain copies of textbooks other than the text in chief?

 7. Are there sufficient good blackboards?

 8. Is there a stereopticon?

 9. Does the school provide an adequate number of stereopticon slides?

10. Are the walls adorned with historical pictures or other historical materials? Is there a "museum of history" in the room?

11. Are pupils encouraged to beautify the room with significant objects of historical interest?


XV. The Assignment of the Lesson.

 1. Is the assignment given sufficient attention by the teacher?

 2. Is it made at the beginning of the recitation period or near the close? What advantages and disadvantages does each practice offer?

 3. Does the assignment take into consideration the character of the work to be studied? In what ways is this true?

 4. Does the assignment vary with the stage of advancement of the students? How?

 5. Does it "blaze a way," so to speak, through the mass of facts so that the pupils really glimpse the significance of the material before them, and are stimulated to attack it?

 6. Does it raise real problems for the students to solve?

 7. Does it suggest too much or too little?

 8. Does it take individual differences sufficiently into account?

 9. Does it include material outside the textbook?

10. If so, is the material well chosen and clearly indicated?

11. Does the assignment correlate the textbook material with contemporary life and with the experiences of the pupils?

12. Is the assignment made so clearly and definitely that all pupils thoroughly understand what it is? What evidences have you that such is the case?

13. Is the assignment too long for adequate preparation?

14. Does it contemplate that the pupils will devote "home study" to it?

15. How much time ought the assignment to require of a moderately good student? Is this adequate?

16. Does the assignment suggest what portions of the text are to be touched upon lightly, what to be studied for appreciation only, what to be critically studied and mastered?

17. Does the assignment include a "review" of previous work? How much?

18. Does the assignment stress dates too much?

19. Is the assignment made with enthusiasm and interest, and does it thus at once strike a responsive chord in the pupils?


XVI. The Study Lesson.

 1. Are pupils encouraged to follow a definite daily schedule in studying their lessons? Do you advise this?

 2. Is there supervised study in the school?

 3. What is the nature of the supervision given in such a period?

 4. Judging from results, have the pupils made good use of their study periods?

 5. Is there in the school a weekly period for consultation and advice?

 6. If pupils are absent from school, is opportunity given for "making up work"? How is this administered so far as the study of history is concerned?

 7. Is there ever provided a period for "unassigned work"?

 8. If so, how is the period employed?

 9. Just what is the secret of getting pupils to study their lessons?

10. Are pupils encouraged to outline the lesson?

11. Are they encouraged to make personal notes on the margin of the textbook pages? Are they shown how to annotate?

12. Are they advised to use notebooks? If so, what is the character of these?

13. Do pupils seem merely to try to "learn the text" or really to comprehend the spirit?

14. Can you suggest ways and means of making the study-lesson more beneficial?

15. Does the teacher sometimes require abstracts to be made in order to teach selection of important points?


XVII. The Recitation Lesson.

 1. Does the class enter the room in a happy, expectant state of mind, or does it appear as though it were about to undergo a disagreeable operation?

 2. Does the class come to "attention" as soon as the signal is given?

 3. Is the aim of the day clearly set forth? Who does it, the teacher or the pupils?

 4. Does the work of the day seem to grow out of some previous discussions or conclusions?

 5. Are the "five formal steps" followed?

 6. Is emphasis placed on information, drill, review, testing, or historical mindedness?

 7. Does the work have balance and proportion?

 8. Is there interest and attention? What is the secret of it?

 9. Are questions clear, concrete, and definite?

10. Is appeal made to more than one sense, i.e., audile, visual, tactile, muscular?

11. Does the teacher really guide and lead, or does she carry most of the burden?

12. Do the pupils coöperate as a team—each seeking to contribute his portion freely and all aiming to attain a definite goal?

13. Does the recitation take on the spirit of comradeship, i.e., of courteous and familiar discussion?

14. Is the lesson enlivened by means of anecdotes, illustrations, stories, dramatic postures, readings, etc.?

15. Is the history lesson correlated with geography, English, foreign language study, science, manual training, and other school studies?

16. Is it correlated with the common life experiences of the pupils, and with the important contemporary institutions and interests of to-day?

17. Are criticisms by the teacher made sufficiently frequent and direct to make pupils careful, but not so frequently and pointedly as to discourage pupils?

18. Are pupils expected to present a connected account of the topics studied and to do this in a clear, forceful, logical manner?

19. Are dates and other mere facts properly subordinated to the real ideas for which they stand?

20. Are the salient points of the lesson collected and tabulated as the lesson proceeds?

21. Is this done by the teacher, or by the pupils, or by both?

22. Do pupils show by their attitude, facial expression, and responsiveness that they are satisfied with the recitation as it progresses?

23. Are formal debates and informal discussions ever permitted in the class?

24. Is use made of the dramatic powers of pupils to interpret and assimilate history?

25. Are visits with the class made to places and institutions of historic interest?

26. Are mock elections and other civic procedures allowed?

27. Is map drawing required? If so, is the work done in class under the supervision of the teacher, or at the pleasure and convenience of the pupils?

28. Is the stress laid on artistic effects in map drawing, or on a graphic presentation of the facts in their relations?

29. Is any use made of genealogical tables or historical charts? What value is there in so doing?

30. Does the teacher demand thoroughness, completeness, and clearness in the recitation of the pupils, or does she accept vague, incomplete, and general statements?

31. Does she interrupt the pupils while they are reciting, or wait until they are through before commenting or criticizing? Does she ask other pupils to criticize?

32. Is the teacher alert, vivacious, enthusiastic?

33. Is she herself thoroughly interested in the work of the day?

34. Is there unexpected variety in the class procedure?

35. Does the teacher seem to enjoy clean, harmless jokes and amusing incidents with her pupils?

36. Is everybody "into the game" all the time?

37. Is the aim of the recitation kept constantly before the class?

38. Is there steady progress toward it?

39. Does the teacher praise discriminatingly the good efforts of the pupils?

40. Is the teacher at all times a friend of the pupils?

41. Is a definite, clear summary of the significant points of the lesson made by the teacher at the close of the period?

42. Are important generalizations formed, and valid principles deduced?

43. Is the fifth formal step (that of application) taken? If so, how is it done?

44. Has the recitation period seemed short or has it been a long, tedious hour?

45. Do pupils leave the room with faces aglow and minds keyed to earnest thought, or do they seem to go as if freed from a prison?

46. Do pupils comment on the day's work as they pass out? Are such comments favorable or unfavorable?

47. Is the pupil's judgment here of any great weight?

48. How does the teacher busy herself between the change of classes?

49. Has the work been such as to make pupils interested in pursuing the study of history for themselves?

50. Has the work been such as to help pupils to think for themselves, to be accurate, to be resourceful, to develop the historical habit of mind?

51. What was the chief weakness of the recitation period?

52. Did pupils rise and recite by topic?

53. Did pupils outline the lesson and then talk from their outlines? What value has this?

54. Were mnemonic devices used? If so, was advantage gained thereby?


XVIII. The Review Lesson.

 1. Is there a stated time for "reviews"? If so, how long is the time devoted to reviews? Is this wise?

 2. Is the review lesson really a new view of the subject matter, or merely a going over the material a second time?

 3. Are definite unifying questions given out for guidance of pupils in preparing for the review lesson?

 4. Is the review lesson conducted orally or in written form?

 5. Is there interest and enthusiasm in the review lesson?

 6. What seems to be the purpose of the review lesson—to drill, to test, or to organize the material in new connections?

 7. Is the final review worth while, or can the same results be obtained by constant daily reviewing?

 8. Do pupils make comparisons, judgments, reactions?

 9. Does the teacher employ any but the large organizing questions while carrying on the review?

10. Are review questions of the kind that will confront the pupils in real life?


XIX. The Lesson in Civics.

 1. Does instruction in civics occupy a separate period or separate term in the history work?

 2. Is a special textbook used?

 3. How much time is devoted to civics?

 4. On what phase of civics is emphasis laid—national, state, or local?

 5. Is the civics instruction closely correlated with history?

 6. Is it vitalized by visits to contemporary governmental institutions?

 7. Are current political events employed to illustrate the course?

 8. Is the class encouraged to organize as a civic or political body?

 9. Are governmental forms and practices brought into the school work?

10. Is emphasis placed too much on details or is effort made to get back of practices to discover the origin, development, and purpose of such practices?

11. Are there mock elections, court trials, debates?


XX. Some Principles of History Dogmatically Stated.

1. "A people's life of thought and feeling obeys the law of continuity and of differentiation. The law of continuity means there are no breaks or leaps in the life of a people. Development may hasten or slacken and may cease for a time, but it is always continuous; the law of differentiation means that thoughts and feelings of a people take on new forms in the process of growth."—Mace.

2. History is an evolution—a continuous movement, and causes always precede effects.

3. The historical attitude is this: Ascertainment of facts, interpretation of actions, investigation of motives, but regarding all events as "portions of human life."

4. The notable characteristics of the 19th century are:

(a) Rise of nationality.

(b) Struggle for constitutional government.

(c) Enthusiasm for natural science.

(d) Development of the doctrine of evolution.

(e) Industrial changes.

(f) Economic theory and reform.

Hence, the study of history demands that such items shall be discovered as explain and support these elements.

5. It is desirable to develop the historic sense by working outward from the industrial activities of the community.

6. It is necessary to reduce diversity to unity.

7. "What is logically first in a subject, i.e., the law or principle, comes last into the possession of the unfolding mind."

8. "The worst possible form of education is an abortive education—one that falls back on some mysterious disciplinary claim for its justification—as if there were any true discipline in failing to master a subject."

9. "History shows that men's actions are governed by some kind of calculable law." The problem is to discover these laws.


XXI. Some Positive Guides and Suggestions.

 1. Clearly set forth the problem to be investigated.

 2. Discover the facts that bear upon this problem—but only the significant facts.

 3. Relate the facts to each other.

 4. Formulate a mental picture of the events or scenes.

 5. Seek to discover the causes that lie back of the facts—the geographical, meteorological, geological, biological, physiographic, and human.

 6. Seek to discover the motives, interests, and intentions of men and societies in producing the events.

 7. Seek to discover the means employed to realize or attain the ideal, motive, or purpose.

 8. Seek to trace the results—both immediate and remote, and both subjective and objective—of the actions thus made.

 9. Seek for principles of unity and diversity in interpreting the events.

10. Make use of time-wholes, space-wholes, and organic-wholes, but avoid making artificial divisions.

11. Guide the pupils, but do not dictate their reactions.

12. Make the study stimulate the intellect, the emotions, the will.

13. Force the pupils to think for themselves—to analyze, compare, reason, judge, and apply.

14. Show that all history,—battles, institutions, constitutions, etc.,—are the result of conflicts of ideas, emotions, ideals, and wills.

15. Correlate constantly.

16. Show that institutions of to-day strike their roots deep in the past, and are but the complex development of simpler forms.

17. Put life into the dead facts; be interested and enthusiastic.

18. Be honest with the facts and with the pupils; confess ignorance rather than endeavor to "bluff."

19. Be free from the textbook.

20. Adapt the work to the pupils' capacities.

21. Arouse, stir, stimulate the pupils and fill with a burning zeal to study history.

22. Have variety.

23. Feed the interest once it is aroused.

24. Drill—but by means of use, not by precept.

25. Do not do for pupils what they should do for themselves.

26. Multiply associations.

27. Anticipate for the pupils what is to come, i.e., stimulate interest by giving a bird's-eye view of the movement before it is analyzed.

28. Emphasize the operation of cause and effect—what a nation or a people sows, so it also reaps.

29. Avoid rote memorizing.

30. Employ recapitulation, summary, and review frequently.

31. Always have a lesson plan.

32. Have "everybody into the game."

33. Shape the work so that it presents the appearance of a real, vital, personal problem.

34. Appear to be a learner with the pupils.

35. Make much use of blackboards and concrete material.

36. Emphasize the value of written work, outlines, map study, and personal reactions.

37. Illustrate, expound, vivify.

38. Keep pupils looking for resemblances.

39. Teach with reference to applications.

40. Show pupils how to study history.

41. Keep in touch with current events and devote some time each week to such events.

42. Have frequent written work, as,

(a) Condensation of a few pages of notable historical works.

(b) Abstracts of accounts of definite events.

(c) Tests, examinations, written lessons.

(d) Notebooks.

(e) Outline maps.

43. Occasionally read selections of historical material before the class.



Allen, J. W. Place of History in Education.

Barnes, M. S. Studies in Historical Methods.

Bourne, H. E. Teaching of History and Civics in the Elementary and Secondary School.

Burstall, Sara A. Impressions of American Education. (Chap. on Method. Edition of 1908.)

Bernheim, E. Lehrbuch der Historischen Methode.

Committee of Ten. Report, pp. 162-203.

Committee of Seven. Study of History in Schools.

Committee of Five. Study of History in Secondary Schools.

Freeman, E. A. Methods of Historical Study.

Hall, G. S. Methods of Teaching History.

Hinsdale, B. A. How to Study and Teach History.

Hartwell, E. C. The Teaching of History.

Jäger, O. Teaching of History. (Tr. by H. J. Clayton.)

Keatinge, M. W. Studies in the Teaching of History.

Langlois, C. V. and Seignobos, C. Introduction to the Study of History.

Mace, W. H. Methods in History.

McMurry, C. A. Special Method in History.

Maitland, et al. Essays on the Teaching of History.

Robinson, J. H. The New History; also, Introduction to the History of Western Europe.

Seignobos, Charles. La Méthode Historique Appliqué.

Periodical Articles on Methods

Barrows, A. C. Teaching History. Ed. 29:140.

Below, G. Die neue historische Methode. In Historische Zeitschrift, N. T. V. 45, pp. 193-273.

Cheyney, E. P. What is History? History Teachers' Magazine, Dec., 1910, p. 75 ff.

Clark, L. A. A Good Way to Teach History. Sch. Rev. 17:255.

Davison, Ellen S. History in German Secondary Schools. Ed. Rev. 40:356.

Ellwood, C. A. How History can be Taught from a Sociological Point of View. Ed. 30:300.

Hall, G. S. The Pedagogy of History. Ped. Sem. 12:339.

Hart, A. B. How to Teach History in Secondary Schools. Syracuse Academy, II, Sept., Oct., 1887, pp. 256-265, 306-315.

Howard, G. E. Study of History in Schools. Ed. Rev. 19:257.

McMahon, E. History in our Public Schools. Ed. 23:109.

Robinson, J. H. Relation of History to the Newer Sciences of Man. Jr. Phil. Psych. Sc. Methods. 8:141.

Salmon, L. The Historical Museum. Ed. Rev., Feb. 1911.

Smith, G. Is History a Science? Amer. Hist. Rev., Apr., 1905.

Thorndike, L. Scientific Presentation of History. Pop. Sc. Mo. 74:170.

Thompson, A. How to Study History. Ed. Rev. 17:167.

Tucker, M. A. Modern Methods of Teaching History. Ed. 20:220.

Welch, C. Outlook in Teaching History. Ed. 31:370.

Note: See History Teachers' Magazine, Philadelphia, a monthly journal devoted entirely to history study.

Some Guides for Teachers

Allen, J. G. Topical Studies in American History.

Bacheler, A. American History—Library Method.

Baker, E. A. A Guide to Historical Fiction.

Brigham, P. Geographical Influences in American History.

Botsford, G. W. Source-book of Ancient History.

Burdick, W. L. Topical Outlines of Roman History.

Channing-Hart-Turner. Guide to the Study of American History. (Every teacher should own this.)

Dixon, Z. A. Guide to Fiction.

Freeman, E. A. Historical Geography of Europe.

Hart, A. B. Source-book of American History.

Hart, A. B. American History Told by Contemporaries. 4 vols.

Hill, Mabel. Liberty Documents.

Kendall, E. K. Source-book of English History.

Lee, Guy C. Source-book of English History.

Major, J. R. Guide to the Choice of Classical Books.

Sonnenschein, W. S. Best Books.

Stephens, H. M. Syllabus of Modern European History.

Note: For lists of bibliography on history see Channing-Hart-Turner, op. cit.; Bourne, op. cit.; and Johnston and others in High School Education, p. 500 ff.



(Copied from Journal of Education for March 27, 1913)

This list attempts to cover American history from colonial times to the close of the Civil War. Not all the books are of literary merit; they have been chosen primarily with regard to their historical interest, although many of them are of the first rank as literature. As the list is not exhaustive, many good historical novels have probably been omitted:


I. Colonial Period

Austin. Standish of Standish; Betty Alden.

Cooper. The Water Witch; Leatherstocking Tales.

Devereux. From Kingdom to Colony.

Hawthorne. The Scarlet Letter.

Johnston. To Have and to Hold; Prisoners of Hope; Audrey.

Rayner. Free to Serve.


II. Revolutionary Period

Altsheler. In Hostile Red; The Sun of Saratoga.

Brady. The Grip of Honor; For Love of Country.

Chambers. Cardigan; The Reckoning.

Churchill. Richard Carvel.

Cooper. The Spy; The Pilot.

Ford. Janice Meredith.

Mitchell. Hugh Wynne, Free Quaker.

Simms. The Partisan.

Stephens. The Continental Dragoon.


III. From the Revolution to the Civil War

Bacheller. D'ri and I.

Brady. For the Freedom of the Sea.

Catherwood. Lazarre.

Churchill. The Crossing.

Dillon. The Rose of Old St. Louis.

Hough. The Mississippi Bubble.

Johnston. Lewis Rand.

Pidgin. Blennerhassett.

Thompson. Alice of Old Vincennes; The King of Honey Island.


IV. Civil War and Reconstruction

Brady. A Little Traitor to the South; The Southerners.

Cable. The Cavalier; Kincaid's Battery.

Churchill. The Crisis.

Dixon. Leopard's Spots; The Clansman.

Eggleston. Dorothy South; The Warrens of Virginia.

Fox. The Little Shepherd of Kingdom Come.

Johnston. The Long Roll; Cease Firing.

Page. Red Rock.