A new resource from the National Archives – Milestone Documents – provides access to primary sources that highlight pivotal moments in the course of American history and government. These documents are some of the most-viewed and sought-out documents in the holdings of the National Archives.
Milestone Documents includes primary sources such as:
- the Lee Resolution of 1776 that first proposed independence for the American colonies
- George Washington’s first inaugural speech
- the patent for the cotton gin
- the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery
- the Supreme Court ruling in Plessy v. Ferguson
- the G.I. Bill
- the official flight transcript of John Glenn’s spaceflight during the first manned space orbit of the earth by an American
- the Voting Rights Act of 1965
- and many more!
You and your students can access the documents through an interactive timeline at the top of the page. Or you can skip down the page to find the historical era you are currently teaching or learning about.
Each milestone document in this list has its own page including historical context and background information, a transcript, links to high-resolution images and additional pages in the National Archives Catalog, and a link to teaching resources for the document on DocsTeach, the online tool for teaching with documents from the National Archives.
Access all of the Milestone Documents at www.archives.gov/milestone-documents! How could you use this list for teaching and learning?