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This site was created by Mark Williams, a history teacher at The Loomis Chaffee School, Windsor, Connecticut, under a grant from the Connecticut Humanities Council. Some of the materials published here were originally created by Mark Williams as Connecticut Case Studies, under a grant from the Connecticut Humanities Council, and printed by the Hartford Steam Boiler Inspection and Insurance Company. John F. Sutherland of Manchester Community College, Ronald P. Dufour of Rhode Island College, Thomas P. Weinland of the University of Connecticut, Tracey Wilson of Conard High School, Robert K. Andrian of The Loomis Chaffee School, and State Historian Christopher Collier served as consultants. The Connecticut Humanities Council is the State Committee of the National Endowment for the Humanities. The viewpoints or recommendations expressed in the materials on this site of are not necessarily those of the Council or the Endowment. Teachers are encouraged to print and make copies of these materials for their students.
Students learn about social history, the study of ordinary people, by using primary sources to investigate the impact of the industrial revolution and democratic political ideology on Granby, Connecticut. Examining materials used by social historians, they develop hypotheses about what was happening in the early 1800s in this typical New England town, and what forces for change were at work.
State Standards AddressedSt.1: see national standards on historical thinking below St.2: Local and state hist./US and World: see national standards for particular eras below St.3: religions, architecture, technological turning points, trade St.4: initiate questions and hypotheses, active learners at local sites
National Standards Addressed (from the National Standards for History: Basic Edition)
Historical thinking: 1. questioning and hypothesizing 2. comprehension, 3. analysis and interpretation, 4. research
U.S. History: Era 2: St. 2C: impact of the Revolution; Era 3: St. 2A economic changes; 2B urbanization; 3A character of politics; 4B reform; 4C gender roles; Era 5: St. 1 differences between North and South
Activity Typesprimary source analysis (using statistical, architectural and pictorial sources as well as documents) secondary source reading synthesis and writing of generalizations/organizing evidence
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Industrialization is hardly a new theme in the history of the United States. Even in the earliest days of the industrial revolution in this country commentators were not unaware of the deep significance of what was happening and of the possible changes that would come with a new industrial order. Nevertheless, in the past three decades scholars involved with what has become known as "the new social history" have made numerous discoveries that have reshaped our thinking about industrialization, even to the point of shaking our notions of what kinds of questions ought to be asked and of realizing that the industrialization process was not simply an economic one. This unit is designed not only to explore economic transitions in early 19th century Connecticut, but also to illustrate the importance of different types of sources and of insights from different disciplines upon which historians have come to depend.
Teachers will probably not find these initial words regarding the purpose of the packet very comforting. Teaching the history of the United States can be a frustrating enterprise when one considers the great variety of approaches that can be taken and the many disciplines that must be brought to bear on the subject. No longer the simple chronology of presidential administrations it once was, U. S. History at the secondary level poses a mind-boggling series of problems for the teacher trying to maintain some thread of continuity to the course. On top of that, a teacher must deal with the problem of getting materials on many subjects that historians are only beginning to understand, such as the history of various social classes, racial, ethnic and gender issues, and economic history. Thus, with this unit, teachers are faced with additional complications.
Teachers who are less anxious about coherence and who see their course more as an introduction to a lifelong learning process will find this collection of materials useful for engaging students in a "new social history" investigation. The materials will also provide some insight into the early development of industry in Connecticut, a state that would become, along with other states in the northeast, increasingly industrialized during the 19th century. Later in the course, teachers could follow up the theme of industrialization in Part 2 of Water Wheels and Steam Engines which focuses on Samuel Colt's firearms company and a strike at Cheney Mills in the early 20th Century.
In actuality, though, the central focus of this collection of materials is not so much to offer a thorough understanding of Connecticut social and economic history or of the process of industrialization. The ultimate goal is much more oriented toward the process of historical inquiry itself - how do historians do their work? Because the study of social history is a relatively new field of inquiry, it can provide an exciting opportunity, if teachers have the materials, for students to feel as though they are engaging in the investigation right along with the historians - breaking new ground themselves, perhaps. They will come to understand that the generalizations in their textbooks about women, working class people, and family life (if the authors of their texts are courageous enough to deal with those matters), are based upon exhaustive research into sources that yield minute amounts of information. They will be able to see that historians, in order to study ordinary people and everyday life, have to use different types of sources from those to which students have already been exposed. Also, they will find out how social history scholars rely upon other disciplines to provide tools for analysis, such as sociology, economics, and statistics itself. Finally, they will experience the joys and frustrations of being in on the early phase of a field of history that does yet not know all the questions it wants to ask, let alone many of the answers.
The principal assumption behind this unit, as the name Water Wheels and Steam Engines implies, is that the process of industrialization was a central fact of life throughout 19th-century America. The choice of a relatively small rural township, Granby, Connecticut, and its village of West Granby, was made not because this was another Lowell or Pawtucket. As a matter of fact, the story of West Granby, Connecticut is a story of failure, for the most part; by the end of the century the town and village had become a sleepy farming area, the foundations of many of the shops along Salmon Brook all but hidden in the weeds. However, this failure of industry to persist in West Granby makes the village an ideal illustration of the pervasiveness of urban and industrial culture in the early 19th century. It demonstrates how the roots of industrialization were just as much in small-town American society as they were in the port-towns and colonial cities. Furthermore, we can see that the advent of industrialization was not based simply in technological developments and the emergence of the corporation, but more broadly in moral concerns, individual ambition, increasing cosmopolitanism, and changing notions of status, to name only a few of the fundamental forces moving American society.
A teacher might use this material when beginning to study the period after the War of 1812, perhaps in conjunction with a visit to Old Sturbridge Village (West Granby has no guided tours, workers in costume or hands-on activities, although it is a fairly scenic and historic place). Another possibility would be to use it as a backdrop for understanding cultural differences between north and south, or as a "flashback" to the roots of industrialization after an initial look at some major manufacturer like Samuel Colt or Andrew Carnegie. Whatever the timing, the unit will, at any point, serve as a full-scale introduction to social history and open students' eyes to the diversity of historical inquiry.
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The first four objectives listed here should be the primary goals of this unit no matter how a teacher fits it into the course. As you will see when you study the materials, it just doesn't make sense to rely upon these materials to achieve content objectives substantially (although when students do read generalizations about social and economic change in their textbooks these generalizations may have more meaning after seeing how they are arrived at). The other objectives listed are those which may or may not be appropriate, depending upon where the unit is used in the course.
1) To appreciate the variety of approaches to history, particularly the study of ordinary people and everyday life (social history), and the history of economic values and goals.
2) To understand that studying ordinary people requires the use of different types of sources and analytical tools, since most people did not write a lot (some not at all!), or even keep good records of major events in their lives.
3) To develop some interest in and curiosity about local and social history, and to realize that these are relatively new fields for serious inquiry. Furthermore, students should be impressed with the fact that the types of sources used are available to them in town halls, local historical societies, and the state library and historical society. It has been my experience that the staffs of such places are delighted to be of assistance to young people who have a real interest in local history.
4) To continue to develop inquiry skills, this time using statistics, architecture, and maps as well as documents, thus opening up new possibilities for students who may have a lot of analytical aptitude that has not yet shown up in study of traditional documents.
5) To understand that industrialization began as a state of mind, even though it did rely upon capital resources and inventive individuals as well.
6) To understand that "the age of the common man" is a phrase that oversimplifies what was happening in the United States in the ante-bellum period. Increasing stratification, changes in economic and social leadership, dashed hopes, aspirations toward aristocratic lifestyles and virtues, slavery, a demeaning of the contributions of women's work and interclass rivalries were just as much a part of this age. Students should have a basis here for beginning to appreciate the emergence of classes and class conflict. They should also begin to appreciate the significance of radical changes in the structure of society and in day-to-day experience. They should also see hints of the new and often unsettling experiences of laborers.
7) To appreciate the cultural differences between northerners and southerners, including differences in religious and moral views, ideas about labor, technological differences, distribution of the wealth, social stratification, etc. (Note: this objective assumes the teacher will have students learn about southern society in some depth, as well as working with these documents).
8) To understand that Connecticut, like other New England states, had abundant water power, and that this was exploited in the early 19th century to promote the industrial revolution in America.
9) To gain a sense for the great risks early "industrialists" faced in terms of dealing with disasters, uneven capital availability, and rapidly changing market and labor conditions.
10) To understand the continuing tension between small-town and urban culture in America, not only where different groups and classes were concerned, but also within individual minds. Americans, as a group and individually, basically aspire to inherently contradictory values (cooperation vs. competition, freedom vs. order, rural vs. urban, individualism vs. communalism, religion vs. secularism etc.). Here very able students might be encouraged to think about the role of irony and paradox in history (for example, they might note the tension between the rhetoric that celebrated traditional values but actually promoted significant change).
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The student handouts and rubrics for these assessments are described on the assessment page. You may go directly to this unit's assessment by clicking here.
Depending on one's objectives, there are different ways of going about assessing the learning that can take place with these materials.
If the purpose is to introduce students to social history sources and the study of ordinary people, the best way to see if they got the idea would be to set them to a follow-up task either investigating their own community's history in the early 1800s or engaging in an investigative field trip at Old Sturbridge Village. To engage in such an investigative assessment would involve considerable introduction either to local archives or to Old Sturbridge Village, but that would be ideal, since the primary objectives of the unit are to introduce students to the discipline and the idea of using a variety of types of sources. The assessment given on the assessment page is designed for the materials with this unit only, and is described in the next paragraph. Nevertheless, for the more extensive follow-up investigation, either locally or at Old Sturbridge Village, the final product could be along the same lines as the assessment given for this unit. The teacher would simply add elements regarding the use of sources to the rubric.
The assessment given on the assessment page assumes that the teacher wants to address some of the content objectives listed above, as well as the disciplinary objectives. To do that the best approach would be to allow students to work freely with the material as discussed in the strategies section below. First ask the class as a group to develop questions that the source material seems to address (regarding social, economic and political change in the early 19th century). Then students should work individually or in small groups to formulate hypotheses that are based on fitting together at least four different types of sources and addressing questions that the class has already asked. Obviously the teacher cannot expect each student to come up with every content objective, and therefore, should look for some to come up with one, and some to come up with another. Perhaps questions that point in the direction of particular content objectives could be assigned to particular students or small groups. If all of the content objectives are not addressed by the final collection of hypotheses that students formulate, the teacher could model how, in using the source materials, he or she comes up with others.
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This collection of materials relates to the town of Granby, Connecticut, which is about fifteen miles northwest of Hartford on the edge of the Berkshire foothills. West Granby is a village center that is part of the township of Granby. In the late 17th century settlers from Windsor pushed west across the Talcott ridge and settled the town of Simsbury, which originally included what is now Granby, as well as Canton, East Granby, and part of Bloomfield. The first split into separate communities occurred in 1736 when Simsbury was partitioned into four separate parishes, or "ecclesiastical societies." Groups in different parts of Simsbury wanted meetinghouses closer to home, and, since these groups were separated by large spaces of unsettled land, it made sense to have separate "societies." The northern two of these, the Salmon Brook Society and the Turkey Hills Society, in a spirit of "civil" as well as an "ecclesiastical" independence after the Revolution, broke off from the town of Simsbury in 1786 to form the town of Granby. The materials were developed so that students could attempt to achieve some understanding of what sort of community Granby was in the early years of its development. Thus, they provide insights on a wide range of themes: religion, economics, family and social structure, geographic mobility, government, and general attitudes and values.
§ "A World Within Itself - an Introduction through Documents, Maps and Statistics" - this is a collection of material with which students begin to study Granby, Connecticut.
§ Chapter XLIX of Timothy Dwight's The History of Connecticut published in 1840.
§ "Windows into the Past" - a documentary collection on West Granby.
§ "Selected Population and Industrial Statistics" - a compendium of various statistics taken from the U.S. Census reports 1790-1860 and other reports.
§ "Heads of Families" - material from the manuscript U.S. Census returns listing people living in West Granby in 1820 and 1850.
§ A map collection showing the development of West Granby during the years preceding the Civil War.
§ Three Insurance Policies for carriagemakers' shops in West Granby (courtesy of the Salmon Brook Historical Society, Granby, Ct.).
§ A Contract between Levi Rice and Appleton Robbins for hats (courtesy of the Salmon Brook Historical Society, Granby, Ct.).
§ Two programs from the West Granby Academy (courtesy of the Salmon Brook Historical Society, Granby, Ct.).
§ An issue of the "Weekly News", a Granby newspaper from 1840 (Connecticut State Library)
§ Photographs showing various architectural styles in West Granby (courtesy of the Salmon Brook Historical Society, Granby, Ct.).
§ Selections from account books of Alpheus and Thaddeus Hayes, who operated a dye shop and cider distillery on Salmon Brook, Sheldon B. Hayes, who had a blacksmith shop, and Carlton Holcomb, a shoemaker (courtesy of the Salmon Brook Historical Society, Granby, Ct.).
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The best place to begin a study of ordinary people and everyday life is with ordinary people caught up in everyday life - namely your students. Before getting into these materials you could have some discussion with them about how they see themselves fitting into "history." Some of them might venture that they intend to become President, or, at least, rich and famous. But probably the others will not, as many of us do not, see themselves as playing a large role in the development of American history. If you are lucky, some may volunteer that things they do everyday, when considered in context with things everybody else does, at least reflect, if not shape, the evolving values and customs by which we operate. Ask them what they think are basic "America values." What are our fundamental beliefs, not only about government and rights, but about how people ought to relate to each other, how a person ought to make a living, how people should live together, what people ought to aspire toward in the future?
Don't be afraid to spend a lot of time on this - perhaps even an entire class, or two (asking them to do some writing on it in between). It will take some time for them even to begin to see that our world is as much controlled by groups of ordinary people and the things they think and feel, as it is by government policies. A good metaphor to use might be advertising. Do advertisers appeal to values that are already there and try to sell products based on how those products live up to existing standards, or do they, themselves, create needs and shape values in order to develop a market? (Hint: the answer is "yes.") In the same fashion, government policies can be seen both as a result of leadership and ideology, as well as an expression of expectations of the people. Thus, the notions of each of us become an important part of history.
This may even be a good point in the course to begin, if you have not already done so, to get the students writing journals on a weekly or daily basis. Also, some investigation into their own genealogy helps them to understand that each individual plays a role in history - that they are part of history.
They should also begin to think about the reverse - that history is part of them, not only in terms of fundamental political traditions, but also in terms of fundamental customs, habits and aspirations that have been handed down through families, ethnic groups, communities, and American society generally. At this point you can announce that they will be taking a look at the way historians assess the role of ordinary people in history and the way the history of these people has shaped our own lives and culture (a word that may need some introduction if you haven't discussed it yet in the course - if you have, say with native Americans or colonial society, then in all the above discussion be sure to maintain consistency of concept use).
Pass out the introductory section "A World Within Itself." Explain that they will be looking at one community in Connecticut very closely, not because all communities were the same, but just to get some ideas on what might have been happening in other communities, and what questions should be asked of all communities. After they have read the introduction, ask them to describe early 19th century Granby in their own words. What sort of place was it? How did people make their living? What do they suppose family life was like? How do they interpret the town resolution that says the town is a "corporate" society, "both civil and ecclesiastical?" What do they suppose were the most important things in the lives of these people? What were their hopes for the future? What would they think of a factory in their midst? Were there different classes of people? How did the classes view each other? How do the students account for the relatively stable population of Granby, as opposed to Hartford's rapidly rising population? (Here it would be good to ask the students to calculate the percentage change in each of the populations every ten years to get a sense of urban growth in Hartford. Also, using the "Town Leaders" chart they could figure out how much real estate wealth the rest of the town had, and divide by 200, the approximate number of non-leader adult males, to find out the average wealth of non-leaders.)
All this hypothesizing can be organized eventually into categories such as social, economic, political, religious, gender, - and subcategories, such as status, role, norms of behavior, products, employment, residential patterns, family structure, etc. If you already have a scheme for analyzing culture then use that one. It is not necessary to be comprehensive, at this point, for a certain amount of hypothesizing is bound to lead to a general picture of a fairly traditional agricultural community with a reasonably stable population (unless they know how high the birth rate was!), a church-centered group that didn't like outside interference, and a community that was, apparently, quite deferential when it came to selecting its political leaders (yet, these leaders were really not an especially "elite" class - note the spelling ability of the town clerk in the minutes of the town meeting). This picture is a "straw man" which will receive substantial punishment as students work with the other documents in the package. In fact, the more idyllic their view of the town at this point, the more striking will be the contrast with the truth they will discover, and thus the more impressed they will be with the coexisting industrial and urban culture that was so very much a part of early 19th century Granby.
It is important to note that the experience of shaping a view of a culture and then finding that that view was completely wrong is a common experience, even for anthropologists who study a culture for years. This rethinking of initial impressions is part of the process. In terms of the early 19th century, American historians have developed concepts such as "premodern" (or sometimes "traditional") vs. "modern" and "preindustrial" vs. "industrial" vs. "postindustrial." The more they have analyzed this period in an effort to apply these concepts, though, the more they have been frustrated by the unending complexity of the transitions, overlapping, and conflicting data. Thus, if students become confused, eventually, by all of this material, it could be said they and their teacher have succeeded!
An interim assignment, after the introduction, might be to have the students read the chapter of Timothy Dwight's 1840 book, in which the author, in spite of his professed love for the closed corporate agricultural community of Greenfield Hill, begrudgingly notes that industrial enterprise is arriving in Connecticut. The students should then be directed to question whether or not this trend had any effect upon a small agricultural community like Granby.
The strategy from this point on becomes rather loose. My own preference would be to "toss out" the other documents every which way, letting different people, or, at least different groups, look at different documents or a couple of documents each. This is the best way to provide the sense of how history is a jigsaw puzzle, and the historian's job is to piece it together, realizing that not all the pieces are there and some imagination will be needed to get the whole picture. Here are some of the things students should be able to pick up from the individual documents:
The map collection should be something everyone has, because it can be used in conjunction with just about all the materials. In particular, this series shows increasing concentration of settlement in the village area, even as the population of Granby is declining. Such concentration is one indication of urbanization, even in a rural setting.
The documentary collection, "Windows into the Past," offers a lot of food for thought on a number of issues. The Huggins excommunication story raises questions about the continuance of Puritan dominance of the community, increasing secularism, and the emergence of the entrepreneur as a sort of antagonist to Puritanism. (Of course, that had been true since the earliest days of American history. Puritan divines in the second generation after settlement were bewailing the emergence of materialism in their society.) The story also contains hints of the Second Great Awakening and temperance efforts, and, when viewed in the larger context of all the documents, suggests a good deal of turbulence and dislocation characteristic of more urban settings. There is also a letter from a young person who has gone west, talking about women earning money and about "old" Connecticut - a clear illustration of the "Yankee Exodus" of the early 1800's to the Ohio valley, as well as a very succinct demonstration of modern attitudes that would bring an end to the traditional community.
The creation of the Methodist Church, which the photograph set shows as a Greek Revival building, is an indication of efforts to revive the morals, as well as the morale, of a struggling community. As the community changed, people began to miss things they had been brought up to believe in. On the other hand, they did not miss Puritanism. The list of contributors, when compared with the Heads of Family listing for 1850, shows that nearly the entire community was in on the church from the beginning. This did not last long. Students might be encouraged to wonder who were the Methodists? What was all this revivalism all about? Hopefully their texts will satisfy some of this curiosity. Methodism was a "down-home" version of the Church of England, a faith that stressed forgiveness and salvation, as opposed to the emphasis of the Congregationalist Puritans on the corruptibility of man and his ultimate doom. Since it was preached in the back-country regions, it tended to avoid the ritual and ornamentation of the Episcopalian or Catholic faiths. Thus, it amounted to an upbeat alternative to Congregationalism for people looking for revival of religion, but without the fire and brimstone. (It should be noted that Congregationalism had, within its own ranks in the 1830's and 1840's, preachers who wanted to lighten the guilt-load their parishioners were carrying.)
The final selection in "Windows into the Past" is from a young woman's diary of 1864. There are good hints here about life for women at the time, and students should be encouraged to raise a lot of questions regarding changes in the role and status of women since colonial times. What do women in a farming community do? How has the changing economy affected their lives? How do they react to the changes? What behavior does society expect of them? Might the Civil War have anything to do with Adelaide's despondency? Obviously, the selection does not offer proof of anything, but does provide an opportunity for a lot of hypothesizing.
The programs for the West Granby Academy (which was built in 1842 and disappeared in the 1880's) are also an indication of continuing efforts at moral revival, as the topics of the essays and speeches show. Note the possible abolitionist bent. This moral emphasis, together with the Greek Revival movement in the architecture of some of the houses built in the 1830's and 1840's, shows increasing concern with improvement, virtue, and communalism being tested by individualism. Teachers should be careful to distinguish between this moralistic educational venture and the so-called "Academy Movement" of the early 19th century. The central feature of that movement was initially to provide a vocational alternative to secondary schools (which were only "grammar schools" in the colonial period, teaching classical grammar for the college- and clergy-bound). By the 1830's many of the academies that were springing up were offering alternatives to the grammar schools and educating the non-college bound, but were not necessarily providing vocational or technical instruction such as accounting, surveying, navigation, and geography.
The population and industrial statistics are the most difficult to deal with, since they concern the concept of population turnover, which may be a bit much for some students. The turnover is quite high, and shows that, beneath the seemingly tranquil surface of population stability, people were moving in and out of town quite rapidly. It would appear that the less permanent people tended to be from the "manufactures and trades" occupational group, and that there was, actually, a distinct group - about half the population - that was quite permanent. Thus, the descriptions in the introduction of a "staid community" are appropriate for the half of the population from which their authors came. Maybe they didn't want to recognize the restless half. At any rate, in spite of the overwhelming agricultural character of the community, there was industrialization and there was a fair amount of mobility. The students should question to value of the statistics too, thinking about how the statistics do not take into account death, young people coming of age, or young people moving away before they made it to the Heads of Family listings.
The Heads of Family listings not only give an illustration of the raw data from which the statistics are developed, but they also provide some specific references that can be used with the other materials. Also, hypotheses can be developed regarding family size, age of marriage, inheritance of trades, and variations in wealth. These particular lists fly in the face of a lot of myths. For example, the notion that manufacturing types tended to reside with their nuclear family and farmers often had an extended family living with them is completely destroyed. Students could hypothesize on why family structures developed as they did in West Granby. They could also wonder about the kinds of contacts these people had with the outside world, either through trade of their surplus agricultural products, or accepting orders that were "put out" by manufacturers in more urban areas. Examination of the account books later on may provide some insight into this issue.
The insurance policies not only bring to mind increasing capital expenditures that need protection (from the floods noted in the "Windows into the Past" document collection), but also show the increasing ties this supposedly insular hill-town was developing with the urbanizing world of Hartford. They also show, as do other sources here, increasing specialization and increasing mobility, as different people take over the carriage manufacturing operation.
The hat contract is interesting also for its demonstration of specialization, as well as the commercial ties the community had quite early with the outside world.
The Weekly News not only demonstrates increasing cosmopolitanism (most of the articles are not on Granby), but also, in a paragraph tucked away inside the paper, reveals the concern for redeeming Granby "from its decaying condition" by installing "one or two manufactories." These people seemed unaware of the fundamentally conflicting values they were espousing.
The photographs help with visualizing the community as portrayed in the documents, statistics and maps, and they also show change. The housing styles are increasingly decorative, betraying an interest in more than domestic functions. Even the shoemaker built himself a Greek temple, in honor of his ambitions, no doubt. His account book indicates that his ambitions did not get him far.
All the account books together show that, in spite of the growing desire to specialize, extend trade networks, and build a "manufacturing establishment," West Granby entrepreneurs could not break away from a cash-poor, credit-poor, locally-dependent economy. These pages, like the population turnover charts, may require more sophisticated thought than most students are able to do by themselves. The teacher might pose some guiding questions, such as with whom are these people doing business (find the names - are they village people)? What are they buying (make a list)? What are they selling? From where does their income come? How great are their expenditures (some of the accounts have only charges for the customers)? How are the accounts settled (cash or barter)? The teacher may even want the students to have worksheets with these questions on them and room to list the various pertinent transactions. When they are done with the analysis, ask the students what they think were the goals of these businessmen, and whether or not they succeeded.
Allow a good deal of time for "puttering around" with the sources. Students can compare notes, test out hypotheses against other sources than the one they first looked at, and develop generalizations about various cultural categories. They might try to draw a picture of the lives of certain individuals, such as Carlton and Eliza Ann Holcomb (she was Eliza Ann Wilcox, valedictorian of her class at the Academy), Thaddeus Hayes, James Huggins, and others whose names come up more than once in the various sources.
Overall, students should begin to see that there was definitely more to this community than meets the eye. It was predominantly agricultural, and exhibited many traditional communal attitudes, but there was also a lot of confusion in their midst. They tried to develop a manufacturing center, and were hardly isolated from the great moral, economic, and architectural movements of their time. It might even be said that those who most feared the decline of their traditional community were most responsible for its modernization through the improvements they tried to make.
All this, of course, must be maintained in the realm of hypothesis, for, after all, this is only one community in one part of one state. It is simply enough to be surprised at the sorts of values we find evidence of, and to be impressed by the relationship between industrialization and the whole spectrum of culture, not only in the emerging cities, but also in the countryside. Finally, a good deal of summary discussion should focus on method. What sorts of sources were significant? How did we develop theories from them? How can we guess about what life was like for them, when we have so little written reflection (such as the official recording of Samuel Hayes's bee tree)? What are the problems that a social historian must face? How are generalizations stated? (usually with great qualification, and usually in terms of saying how things were not, rather than how they were) Why is it important to study social history? What role do ordinary people play in the development of history? At this point students will be able to move into their texts as more critical readers. Not only will they demand their texts deal with these topics, but they will also know how tentatively their texts must deal with them.
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I have discussed this era of Granby's history in Chapters 2 through 8 of my book A Tempest in a Small Town: The Myth and Reality of Country Life - Granby, Connecticut 1680-1940 (Granby: Salmon Brook Historical Society, 1996). The Salmon Brook Historical Society has some other publications on the history of the town: The Heritage of Granby (1967), and a more recent Granby, A Brief History, by Carol Laun for the town's bicentennial in 1986. It also publishes a periodical called The Collections of the Salmon Brook Historical Society. All of these may be obtained directly from the Salmon Brook Historical Society, Granby, CT 06035.
However, the point of this unit was not necessarily to get students or teachers deeply interested in Granby. In fact, if students ask where they can find out more about Granby, they should be encouraged to look, instead, at their own town (unless, of course, they are Granby Memorial High School students) and see if they can find the same kind of sources that were provided in this study. The types of sources used above are probably available for their own communities in the Connecticut State Library (across the street from the capitol), the Connecticut Historical Society (1 Elizabeth St., Hartford), and at their local historical society (note above how many of the sources came from the Salmon Brook Historical Society). Since the ultimate goal of this unit was to arouse some interest in and understanding of the discipline of social history itself, it seems more appropriate here to suggest more general works.
Anonymous Americans, Explorations in Nineteenth Century Social History. Tamara K. Hareven, ed. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice-Hall, 1971. A good collection of articles that show as much about method as trends.
Brown, Richard D. Modernization: The Transformation of American Life, 1600-1865. New York: Hill and Wang, 1976. This is an interesting theoretical work tracing the emergence of modern attitudes in a period in which traditional attitudes dominated.
Clark, Christopher. "Household Economy, Market Exchanges, and the Rise of Capitalism in the Connecticut Valley, 1800-1860." Journal of Social History. 1984. Explores the growing connections between farming communities and the outside world through trade in surplus agricultural products.
Day, Clive. The Rise of Manufacturing in Connecticut, 1820-1850. Tercentenary Pamphlet No. XLIV (1935). This might be found in a vertical file, if not on the library shelves. It is a brief work, but contains interesting data on wages, prices and working conditions for the period.
Dublin, Thomas. Farm and Factory: The Mill Experience and Women's Lives in New England 1830-1860. New York: Columbia University Press, 1981. A good, readable study of changes in New England as they affected working women in particular.
Faler, Paul. "Cultural Aspects of the Industrial Revolution: Lynn, Massachusetts, Shoemakers and Industrial Morality, 1820-1860," Labor History, XV (1974). A really interesting article that raises the same sorts of questions the documents of this unit raise.
________. Mechanics and Manufacturers in the Early Industrial Revolution: Lynn, Mass. 1780-1860. Albany: State University of New York Press, 1981. The later, book-length study, which poses substantial theories to address the issues raised in his article above.
Fogel, Robert W, and Stanley L. Engerman, eds. The Reinterpretation of American Economic History. New York: Harper & Row, 1971. This collection of revisionist articles is good basic reading.
Hayter, Earl W. The Troubled Farmer, 1850-1900: Rural Adjustment to Industrialism. De Kalb, Ill. L Northern Illinois Press, 1968. This presents an interesting picture of the impact of industrialization on rural communities, but fails to recognize how involved those rural communities were, themselves, in the process.
Metcalf, Fay D. and Matthew T. Downey. Using Local History in the Classroom. Nashville, Tenn.: The American Association of State and Local History, 1982. This is a tremendous project with all sorts of useful information and ideas, including teaching techniques for all levels, bibliographic citations and annotations, and illustrated guides for the interested non-professional.
Nineteenth Century Cities, Stephen Thernstrom and Richard Sennett, eds. New Haven: Yale University Press, 1969. A collection of essays by scholars trying to understand the nature of urbanization.
North, Douglass C. The Economic Growth of the United States 1790-1860. New York: Norton Co., 1966. A substantial, "texty" work that has become a classic.
Pessen, Edward. Riches, Class, and Power Before the Civil War. Lexington, Mass.: D.C. Heath and Co., 1973. Pessen attacks the myth that socioeconomic distinctions were becoming blurred in the Jacksonian age. His focus is the filthy-rich in antebellum cities, and he is quite persuasive.
Prude, Jonathan. The Coming of the Industrial Order: Town and Family Life in Rural Massachusetts 1810-1860. Cambridge, Cambridge University Press, 1983. A very important work on two factory towns in south-central Massachusetts, showing high levels of geographic mobility.
Wallace, Anthony F. C. Rockdale. New York: Alfred A. Knopf, 1978. Wallace has studied a textile manufacturing region south of Philadelphia before the Civil War. This is a readable, but exhaustive, study, which gets into the moral foundation of modern capitalism as well as the development of technological and capital resources.
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