Historical Documents

These primary source, historical documents are aligned to our curriculum. By reading and analyzing primary source documents you can form your own opinions and understanding of a historical time period. Below are resources to help analyze them and worksheets to assist you.

Analyzing a Historical Document
Document Analysis Worksheet
More Document Analysis Worksheets

America’s Founding Documents
Declaration of Independence
The Constitution of the United States
Bill of Rights

American Symbols
Address in Independence at the Dedication of the Liberty Bell
Liberty Bell Dedication Ceremony (photo)
Executive Order 10834-The flag of the United States (adding Hawaii)
Proclamation 3418–Display of the flag
Executive Order for the Flag of the United States
The Flag Code
Early American Flags
The Star-Spangled Banner
Deed of Gift for the Statue of Liberty
The Great Seal of the United States
Original Design of the Great Seal of the United States
The Great Seal of the United States Informational Page
Pledge of Allegiance, Manner of Delivery

Early Exploration of America
Jefferson’s Secret Message to Congress
Jefferson’s Instructions for Lewis
Lewis and Clark Expedition
Lewis and Clark Documents
More Lewis and Clark Documents
List of Purchases Made by Lewis
Charting America: Maps
1903 Map of Louisiana Purchase
Louisiana Purchase Treaty (1803)
Presents for Native Americans
Check for Purchase of Alaska

American Indian Nations
Native Americans
American Indian Primary Documents
Native American Treaties
Indian Removal Act (1830)
Sioux Treaty of 1868

Mexican American War
Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo
Disturnell map of 1847

Gold Rush
American West Photos
CA State Library: Gold Rush
Calisphere: Gold Rush
Letters and Writings
The Donner Party

Development of the Constitution
“Give me liberty or give me death”
Declaration of Independence
National Archives: Declaration of Independence
Articles of Confederation
U.S. Constitution
Bill of Rights
Founding Fathers
America Votes – The First Presidential Election
Launching the U.S. Navy
Washington’s Farewell Address

American Revolutionary War
Prequel to Independence
Pictures of the Revolutionary War
Images of the American Revolution

The Civil War
Civil War Photographs
Declarations of Seceding States
Ordinances of Secession of the 13 Confederate States of Americas
Lincoln’s 1st Inaugural Address
The Confederate States Constitution
The Gettysburg Address
Compromise of 1850
Fugitive Slave Act
The District of Columbia Emancipation Act
The Emancipation Proclamation
13th Amendment
14th Amendment
15th Amendment
Civil War Photographs
Black Soldiers in the U.S. Military During the Civil War
Letters, Photographs, and Telegrams during the Civil War
The Union Blockade: Lincoln’s Proclamations
Post Civil War: Freedmen and Civil Rights Freedmen

Civil Rights
The Fugitive Slave Act (1793)
The Slave Importation Ban (1808)
Women’s Civil Rights Documents
Civil Rights Act of 1875
The Emancipation Proclamation
13th Amendment
14th Amendment
15th Amendment
Petition from Susan B. Anthony (1874)
Ratification 19th Amendment (Women’s right to vote)
Women’s Right to Vote (19th Amendment)
Women Election Day
Desegregation of Armed Forces
Booker T. Washington Speech
Brown vs Board of Education
Brown V. Board of Education of Topeka
Documents Related to Brown v. Board of Education
Letter from Jackie Robinson to Dwight D. Eisenhower
President Kennedy’s Inaugural Speech
Civil Rights Act of 1964
“I have a dream” Speech
Social Security Act
Voting Rights Act (1965)

Thomas Edison’s Patent Application for the Light Bulb
Alexander Graham Bell Telephone Patent
The Homestead Act of 1862
Documentation of Child Labor (photos)

World War I
Photographs during World War I
Sow the Seeds of Victory! Posters

The Great Depression
FDR’s First Inaugural Address Declaring ‘War’ on the Great Depression
FDR’s Fireside Chat on the Recovery Program

World War II
The First Typed Draft of Franklin D. Roosevelt’s War Address
Documents related to FDR and Winston Churchill
Message Drafted by General Eisenhower in Case the D-Day Invasion Failed and Photographs Taken on D-Day
Japanese Relocation During World War II
Memorandum Regarding the Enlistment of Navajo Indians
Letter of Albert Einstein to the Lieutenant Stephen Brunauer, U.S. Navy Bureau of Ordnance
The Atlantic Charter
Letter from Churchill to FDR
Surrender of Germany
German Surrender Documents
Surrender of Japan
Japanese Instrument of Surrender
The Japanese Surrender Documents
The Atomic Bomb and the End of World War II, A Collection of Primary Sources
The Decision to Drop the Atomic Bomb

Apollo 11 Flight Plan
Elvis Presley’s Letter to President Richard NixonTranscript
Elvis Presley’s Letter to President Richard Nixon Full Text
The Nixon-Presley Meeting, December 21, 1970