Students will complete a brief report for each article or book chapter we read this semester. These will be peer-assessed according to a rubric, and the 10 best grades will count towards the assignment.
Each student will undertake a study of elections in one Massachusetts town between 1787 and 1824 using A New Nation Votes, a database of early United States elections, and the America’s Historical Newspapers database. The paper will be due on Thursday, February 20.
Upon completion of the research on elections, students will bring their research together at the county level in order to discuss broader trends in Massachusetts elections. Presentations will be scheduled for Tuesday, March 10.
Book Responses (10% each)
Students will write a brief essay based on their reading of each book assigned for the course (A Midwife’s Tale and Birthright Citizens). Details will be distributed when we begin discussing each book. The response for A Midwife’s Tale will be due on Thursday, March 12 and the response for Birthright Citizens will be due on Tuesday, April 14.
Final Essay (30%)
Students will complete a historiographic essay based on an topical analysis of trends in scholarship published in the Journal of the Early Republic. The essay will be due on the date assigned by the Registrar (Thursday, May 14), and will be comprehensive of the semester.
Martha S. Jones, Birthright Citizens: A History of Race and Rights in Antebellum America (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2018). ISBN: 978-1-316-60472-4
Laurel Thatcher Ulrich, A Midwife’s Tale: The Life of Martha Ballard, Based on Her Diary, 1785-1812 (New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1990).