Let’s Talk About: Websites for Social History

Library of Congress, Washington, D.C.

Big thanks to the July/August 2022 issue of Family Tree Magazine for this information.

Why do we want to learn about social history? What has it to do with genealogy? It has everything to do with our family history! Genealogy is the facts. Social history gives the why-when-how of those facts.

When I learned that my great-grandmother took her 8-year-old daughter (my grandmother, Clara) upstream on the Mississippi River to visit family in St. Louis, I wanted to know more about the circumstances of that story. THAT’S social history. 

We’ve probably all used Google to find images of what life was like for our ancestors in any past time period or place. That’s well and good, but there are other website you might consider:

** Encyclopedia Britannica – yes! No more a groaning load of huge volumes on our living room shelves, but all online AND up to date!  (www.britannica.com)
** Food Timeline  (www.foodtimeline.org). What your ancestors ate, and how they fixed their food, tells you much about their daily lives.
**History Net (www.historynet.com). Search for U.S. history topics at this website from the California Gold Rush to D-Day.
**Immigration to the United States, 1789-1930… really long website address:library.harvard.edu/collections/immigration-united-states-1789-1930This Harvard Library resource allows you to search among thousands of digitized books, pamphlets, periodicals, manuscripts and photos to learn more about voluntary immigration to America.
**Library of Congress Digital Collections (www.loc/gov/collections). This site includes Chronicling America (the only US newspaper resource) and more. 

At the bottom of the article was this banner bit:  “Read Shelley K. Bishop’s list of free social history website, categorized by subject at www.familytreemagazine.com/history/top-social-history-websitesThere is ALWAYS more to learn about the lives and times of our ancestors. 

3 comments on “Let’s Talk About: Websites for Social History

  1. Nancy J Bonafede says:

    Good info Donna


  2. Can the Stillaguamish Valley Genealogical Society share this info in our newsletter? Thanks Donna…

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