If you’re like me, browsing through any collection of primary source documents and multimedia can quickly become a black hole where time ceases to exist. You get sucked in by the content and possibilities and a couple of hours later, you resurface.

I ran across a site like that yesterday.

Ball State University’s Library and Archives people have put together a wonderful collection of incredible primary documents. And while there are no specific lesson plans and activities paired with them, (they are archivists after all) the amount and quality of the content is pretty impressive.

A few things caught my eye that I believe you will find useful as part of your instruction. The nice thing about this stuff is that is the raw data of history, requiring you and your students to really dig into it to find meaning and relevance. It’s a great place for your kids to get their hands dirty analyzing and assigning value to historical data.

Thomas Jefferson once said that

A morsel of genuine history is a thing so rare as to be always valuable.

Ball State has gone beyond a morsel and provided a feast. If you’re hungry, you know where you need to be.