Who are the best American historians
5 Free, Fun, and Fascinating Ways to Learn American History Online
America's fascinating history is more exciting and entertaining than ever before. Learn the best of American history from free YouTube channels, podcasts, and virtual museums.
The Native American Day or Columbus Day debate takes a look at American history. What do we celebrate and remember? They say history is made by the winner, but increasingly, the values of today's culture determine how the past is viewed. The first step, then, is to look at the past in its entirety by learning about all of American history, not just the McNuggets.
1st US History Crash Course: Best YouTube Course on American History
The Green Brothers, John and Hank started the Crash Course series 10 years ago, and the US history segment is popular and relevant to this day. The idea is to learn about the story through entertaining and humorous videos in bite-sized segments.
The entire crash course consists of 47 videos, each lasting around 10 to 15 minutes. The Green Brothers have their own unique style of video with John speaking on camera, animated segments, and real-world images and clips. Everything is combined in a nifty package with a rib-tickling humor that doesn't take anything too seriously.
If you've always found history classes stuffy and boring, you'll love this fresh and light-hearted version. Take the course to learn all about Columbus and the Spaniards to America, and go all the way to the Obama administration.
The crash course is based on the American curriculum but takes its own liberties when appropriate and not academic. If you want a university-level course, find the best free courses online.
2. American Historians: Podcast with New Perspectives
It sounds ridiculous to say that there is a history podcast out there that is full of energy and vitality, but somehow the American historians manage to do it. Host Lindsay Graham delves deep into the big points and events in US history, but always makes them personal and adds a new perspective.
Too often one hears history through the eyes of change makers and great personalities. Instead, Graham finds others in the room who were part of the historical event. It's about something you've heard of before, but now it's told with new eyes. From wars and revolutions to the space race, it's American history that you haven't heard of.
Much of the podcast's charm comes from Graham's unique narrative style. He has a pleasant, soothing voice that brings vibrancy to the story it tells. With academic historians researching the podcast, they can find connections and contexts that you cannot read in history books.
3. Smithsonian National Museum of American Indian and Google Arts
The Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) preserves and celebrates Native American history. In collaboration with Google's arts and culture laboratory, a number of fascinating online exhibitions and small shows are now taking place.
Currently, you can visit 12 online exhibits on topics such as the horse's influence on Native American culture, the origins and culture of the Inca Empire, and the impact of Native American imagery in modern times. Each exhibit is an interactive multimedia experience with a cool surfing pattern.
The collaboration between NMAI and Google Arts is a little different. Think of this as an online show or presentation rather than an exhibition. It celebrates various aspects of Native American cultural artifacts, such as speaking in code and how it influenced modern warfare or the art of the cradle board to carry babies. These are short slide shows that take about 5-10 minutes to complete. Because of this, Google Arts is one of the best apps for learning history in new ways.
4. Virtual tour of the American Revolution Museum
To learn more about the American Revolutionary War, there is no better place than the American Revolution Museum. And when you can't visit in person, it offers one of the best online virtual tours you have ever experienced.
If you haven't tried a virtual tour before, be sure to read the guide to get started. Otherwise, jump straight to the tour, it's pretty intuitive. The entire tour is presented as a 360-degree panorama of the actual museum with numerous interactive elements.
For example, click icons for photos, sounds, and documents to play them. Certain objects and artifacts in the museum are virtually highlighted and you can click on them to view the exhibition in detail.
The museum and virtual tour divided the revolution into four sections: Becoming Revolutionaries, The Darkest Hour, War of Independence, and A New Nation. Each section has more elements and segments for an experience that lasts over an hour in total. This is one of the best interactive ways to learn history online.
5. Interactive map of Christopher Columbus' travels to America
Columbus' journey west in search of India and eventually America changed the world. It's one of those historical events that you can't ignore, and you can see the route on this fascinating interactive map of the Mariner's Museum and Park.
Columbus made four trips from Spain to America and ended up in the Caribbean, Cuba, the Dominican Republic and Haiti. This user-made map overlay over Google Maps shows the key points of each trip with a brief description for each trip.
If at first glance there is too much information, turn on the levels one at a time. Slowly go through the events and learn about this epic route.
6. The New York Times' 1619 Project: Black American History
The 1619 project seeks to reshape the discussion of American history based on the contributions and consequences of slavery and black Americans. Why 1619? Because that year enslaved Africans were brought to mainland America for the first time.
The interactive website contains articles, essays, and photo essays that discuss how many aspects of the United States have been shaped by the influence of black Americans today. For example, what does a traffic jam in Atlanta have to do with segregation? Check the project to find out.
Since it was first created, the scope of the project has expanded. It now includes a podcast, streamed lectures, and intriguing reader responses.
The story is more interesting than ever
Celebrating Christopher Columbus' voyage is a controversial topic as he is viewed in two ways: as an intrepid explorer and as a ruthless colonialist. In a short TED video, Alex Gendler explains the argument against Columbus. The Knowing Better channel now offers several videos about the demystification of Columbus in a modern context.
The main point of many historians and that of this article is to learn the full story of a great event. The new ways to learn history on the internet make it more interesting and fun today than ever before. All you have to do is access these free resources and form your own opinion.
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