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American History told by
Contemporaries

PART I

PRACTICAL INTRODUCTION

FOR TEACHERS, LIBRARIES, AND STUDENTS

CHAPTER I-SOURCES AND THEIR USES

THE

1. Educative Value of Sources

HE question of the availability and use of sources for those who are not expert investigators has been discussed recently in many other places, and needs no special treatment here. The Committee of Seven of the American Historical Association has considered it in its Study of History in Schools; the New England History Teachers' Association is shortly to publish a Report on the Use of Sources, which will be a guide both to the methods of using sources and also to the materials available in English. In Hart's Source-Book of American History are practical introductions, by various hands, on the use of sources in schools and colleges. James Ingersoll Wyer, Bibliography of the Study and Teaching of History (in the Report of the American Historical Association for 1899), prints an elaborate list of books and articles on historical methods. The editor of the Contemporaries has developed his views on the subject in the Introductions to the previous volumes of this series, and they need not here be repeated.

For the imaginative side of history, Volume IV includes some of the most notable and spirited narratives ever written on American affairs. The period from the beginning of the Mexican War to the outbreak of the

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