Revolution & Independence Web Sites

Our American Revolution ★★★★★
This site gives an excellent overview of the American Revolution through hundreds of primary sources and objects, including letters, flags, furniture, clothing, and more; students with an eye for style will especially enjoy the special feature on Revolutionary fashion.

American Revolution Institute ★★★★★
The American Revolution Institute is a great site for in-depth discussion of the Revolutionary War and, more broadly, life and culture in the American colonies towards the end of the 18th century. The Institute offers many online lectures, delivered by university professors and key Revolutionary-era historians; see Historians on Hamilton, in which a panel of experts examines the historical accuracy of the famous musical.

Alexander Hamilton Exhibition ★★★★☆
This interactive site by the New York Historical Society features a timeline of Hamilton’s life, a narrated tour of the exhibit’s most prominent items, and the “Hamilton Log,” which takes students through nearly every week of Hamilton career with selected writings.

Religion and the American Revolution ★★★★☆
Religion played a major role in the American Revolution by offering a moral sanction for opposition to the British–an assurance to the average American that revolution was justified in the sight of God. This Library of Congress page uses primary source documents to illustrate this role.

Africans in America: Revolution, 1750-1805 ★★★★☆
Part of PBS’s African-American Journey site, here you’ll find part one of a rich collection of resources — images, documents, stories, biographies, commentaries — on the experience of slavery in America. There is also a useful teacher’s guide and activities for students. There are three other parts to explore: The Terrible Transformation: 1450-1750, Brotherly Love:1791-1831, and Judgment Day: 1831-1865.

Spy Letters of the American Revolution ★★★★☆
The exhibit is based on spy letters from the William L. Clements Library, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan. The Gallery of Letters provides a brief description of each letter and links to more information about the stories of the spies in the letter or the secret methods used to make the letter.

Commonplace: the Journal of Early American Life ★★★★☆
This is an online journal of Early American History that strives to be “A bit friendlier than a scholarly journal, a bit more scholarly than a popular magazine” In large part it succeeds, with in-depth articles on Early American topics and columns devoted to classroom teaching, author interviews, material history, and book reviews. Several issues have been theme issues based on topics like Money, Pacific Routes and Early Cities.

The History Place: American Revolution ★★★☆☆
Contains timelines and a picture gallery of George Washington.

LIBERTY! The American Revolution (PBS) ★★★☆☆
PBS’s assorted and diverse web exhibits supplement specific individual television series and generally include a summary of each episode, interviews (often with sound bites), a timeline , a glossary, photos, and links to relevant sites. Liberty explores the impact of the revolutionary era on the lives of African Americans.

Lesson Plans, Teacher Guides, Activities and more

Revolutionary Choices
Revolutionary Choices is an expansive and immersive strategy game in which the player is tasked with managing the Continential Army and winning the Revolutionary War. However, there are many obstacles to victory, including winning the international support of France and Spain, combating loyalists in the Southern colonies, and resupplying troops. true to its name, the game features about two dozen turning points that impact the outcome of the war: independence is not guaranteed! Developed by the American Revolution Institute, the game is designed for educational use and comes with a classroom guide to help integrate Revolutionary Choices into a school environment. It is free to play online!

Colonial Women during the Revolution
In this lesson plan, students conduct research into the various ways colonial women participated in events leading up to and during the American Revolution. Offered through the Elizabeth Murray Project, a site for early American history sponsored by the NEH.

Yorktown Virtual Reality Tour
See what the historic battlefield looks like today in 360-degree VR. Overlaid markers designate important historical sites and give appropriate context. A virtual reality tour of Camden is also available.

Lesson Plan: Voices of the American Revolution
In this EDSITEment lesson plan, students focus on the issues and sentiments of the colonial population immediately prior to the revolution. The lesson plan is quite comprehensive, listing many activities and essay projects. Recommended for High school students.

“I Cannot Tell a Lie” – Examining Myths in American History
In this lesson, students examine and debunk historical myths, using the American Revolution as a starting point. They then create and play a game of “American History: Fact or Fiction?”(June 30, 2003)

Tasting History: A Dish for the First 4th of July… and Why it Should be on the 2nd!
A fun, educational series with an entertaining host, Tasting History is a show that recreates historical recipes. Cooking is interspersed with fun facts, trivia, and an overview of the dish in its historical context. While we may think of BBQ, hot dogs, and potato salad as traditional 4th of July fare, the Founding Fathers certainly did not. In this episode, host Max Miller takes a look at one of the earliest celebratory meals and explores why John Adams wasn’t a fan of July 4th.

All Fired Up: Explaining Fourth of July Related Themes and Images
In this New York Times lesson, students brainstorm images and themes associated with the American Fourth of July holiday. They then create illustrated posters to explain the processes or history behind these themes.(July 4, 2002)

Lesson Plan: George Washington, the Precedent President
This lesson plan draws from a wide array of sources, including the NARA, PBS, and many others. Students are asked to compare the real George Washington with the heroic, patriotic legend he has become. Recommended for high school students.

Lesson Plan: Background on the Patriot Attitude Toward the Monarchy
This lesson plan is meant to provide students with a basic knowledge of how the American Patriots felt towards English Governments. Ample resources and printable worksheets included. Intended for grades 6-8.

Lesson Plan: Colonial Broadsides and the American Revolution
“Broadsides” address virtually every aspect of the American Revolution, providing a wide range of suitable classroom topics. In this lesson, students will use the resources of the Library of Congress’s Printed Ephemera Collection to experience the news as the colonists heard it. Grades 6-8. AP United States History Quizzes
A New York teacher has produced a great general site for history teachers that offers AP-level United States history quizzes on many different periods and topics.

The American People: A People in Revolution
PowerPoint Presentation on the American Revolution as part of the online companion to The American People.

AP United States History DBQs: 1775-1825
These student-created DBQs are part of the excellent site

Paul Revere’s True Account of the Midnight Ride
In a letter written in 1798 to Massachusetts Historical Society founder Dr. Jeremy Belknap, Paul Revere described his actual adventures during his “Midnight Ride” of April 18-19, 1775.

Places of the American Revolution Game
From Quia, a variety of games for students to test themselves on their knowledge of historic places from the American Revolution.

Kid’s Page at Valley Forge
A game and other “fun stuff” from the Valley Forge historical site.

Who Wants to Marry a Founding Father?
This interactive website prompts students with a variety of questions that leads them to picking a potential historical spouse. After choosing a founding father (or mother), students canhoneymoon on the Bill of Rights golf course for a second history-based game.