Three children in c.1860s dress.

"Whatever thy hand finds to do, do it with all thy might."

A few months ago I began to consider creating a Civil War-era unit study for my daughter. The more I worked, however,
the more I saw that it is impossible to truly understand the mindset of the people during this time period without
understanding a little about what their lives were like.   

The information in this unit study actually began as an hour-long program I used at  a local  home-school coop. There I
taught 4 levels: Early elementary, upper elementary, middle school, and high school students.


* All historians bring a bias to their work. This is an unabashedly southern,  conservative, Protestant Christian
study, although I do not advance any particular denomination's interpretation.

* This Unit Study is MULTI-LEVEL and contains material that would challenge a high school senior with a calling to
study history.  Thus there are topics here that may not be suitable for younger or more sensitive students. The
Supplementary Readings are usually designed for UPPER LEVEL students.  Parents may want to gloss over the
sections on sickness, poverty, and other difficult topics.

* No one is expected to do, or needs to do, all of the projects or work suggested. I simply want to provide MORE
information and suggestions than you need, so that you may pick and choose.

*While this unit study does NOT claim to be a "complete" course in English, History, Science or Math, you will find
workpages and suggestions for these at the end of some lessons. Hopefully one day this will be a complete unit

*Some of the quotes given for more advanced readers are taken from 19th century sources. Some are exact quotes,
others I had to alter somewhat to make them easier to read or more suitable to be read orally (which is what
we did when I gave this program).
If your student is looking for exact quotes to use in a research paper, have him
or her consult the original source document for the exact wording. I have also including role-playing readings, which
I created just for this project.

At the end of this introductory section, you will find a list of the skills covered and also a list of the suggested

God Bless you as you teach your precious children!

Click on the link in blue to go to the pages.

I like unit studies with everything included, but some people like lots of supplemental materials.
Here are some ideas for things that you might want  to borrow or buy before starting this program,
and also a list of possible activities for your planning convenience.


A. Acquire books for extra reading, if desired.  Some books may be suitable only for older teens or adult
researchers. Be sure and read or review the books before you assign them to be sure they meet with your
family's beliefs and views. A complete list of books that are suitable for adult research are located at the
very end of this section.

Novels  (If you want something extra)

Little House Series  (Post Civil-War; Good for read-aloud, too.)
Caddie Woodlawn - Civil War Period
Little Women Civil War Period. (There are abridged versions that are good for younger                 
Rose in Bloom - Post Civil War
Red Badge of Courage -Civil War

*I am not fond of the
Elsie Dinsmore Series, although it is "Christian." I personally find some of the
books very disturbing and some of the characters emotionally abusive.

Non-Fiction for Older Students
Edwin Tunis' books
Eric Sloan's books
Diary of an American Boy
Civil War Era diaries

Historical Coloring Books and Paper Doll Books
Dover publications carries historical coloring books on a wide variety of subjects: American history, wars,
art, etc.  These books are often very inexpensive, and can add a lot to your study.
Dover publications historical paper dolls are great for little girls.....and boys, too.

B. Start planning field trips and activities.

I. Introduction Definitions, Time Line, Getting Started

Possible Activities

A. Time Line- either purchased or made. I believe in having students learn the major events of the century
first, and then filling in the details as they get older. This helps create a chronological perspective;
historical events do NOT happen in a vacuum, but usually result from events that happen before.  
However, before the age of twelve or thirteen, many children cannot really comprehend the abstract
concept of time.

B. Acquire a folder, folders or binder(s) if you wish to create a lap-book or binder for this information.

C. Print out an appropriate coloring sheet, if available, for younger students

D. English:  Most sections will have English practice pages.

E. Math. Each math section will have different parts suitable for children with different skills. If you like,
you can also use a copy of Ray's Arithmetic to give a 19th century feel to your lessons.

F. Geography:  Print out a U.S. map with the current states from www.yourchildlearns.com or another
source. As you study certain regions, the student can also locate and color the appropriate state.

G. Be sure that students have access to a good dictionary if they are looking up vocabulary words.

H. Queen Victoria Research: Older Students: Research Queen Victoria and be ready to tell some facts
about her life. They can report orally or in writing, or create a Powerpoint Presentation.


Possible Activities

A. Family Tree:  Have pieces of paper or pre-printed genealogy forms available for children to fill out their family
tree. Or, you can have one large sheet of paper and the whole family can work on it together. You can later
compare your family to 19th century families.

B. If you are doing the lap-book, have the pages printed out.

C. Be prepared to discuss death and divorce in this section. In this section, you may need to discuss the death of
parents or divorce with your older children. You may want to explain your church’s beliefs about divorce and also
how divorce affects children and adults. You may also want to explain adoption, and how adoption works. As an
adoptive parent, I have included some information on adoption at the end of this lesson.

D. Consider having students play-act being people of different classes. Some children might play-act being servants
or farmers, and others shop-keepers or mill workers. You may even want to supply simple costume props: a hoe
for the farmer, a fancy hat for the society woman, a ragged pair of pants and shirt for the millworker, etc. Get the
students thinking about how life might have been different for people from different social groups.

E. Have a flow-chart that shows the authority structure in your home, starting with God at the top. You might
compare this to the hierarchy of the military, or the authority structure in your church. Explain that while all
people are spiritually equal and deserve respect, God HAS put certain people in charge of other people: parents
over children, fathers over their family, bosses over employees, government servants (policemen) over the public,

F. Be prepared to discuss the Biblical roles for men and women (as your denomination interprets them.)

G. Be prepared to discuss racism. You might consider the following points:
That wrong interpretation of the Bible was used to support racism.
The fact that all humans are descended from Noah and his wife
How evolutionary theory contributes to racism by teaching that humans evolved, and thus some humans are
less "evolved" than others.

H. Be prepared to discuss classism (the belief that there are groups or classes of people that are "better" than
others.) The readings will help students see that these beliefs were cultural, and many came from the "Old

I. Have students be servants of one another- helping siblings clean their room, etc.  Being a servant is NOT a
negative thing for a Christian.

Research Materials for Adults and Upper High School Students
Serving Women: Household Service in Nineteenth Century America by Faye E. Dudden
Seven Days a Week: Women and Domestic Service in Industrializing America  by David Katzman
The Plantation Mistress  by Catherine Clinton
Plantation Life in Texas by Elizabeth Silverthorne c. 1986  First Edition. Texas A & M U. P.  College Station


Possible Activities

A. Field Trip:  Ride on one of the 19th century means of transportation (canoes, steamengine train, horse, or  
carriage) if possible.  If this is not possible, just go for a long walk, and pretend you are walking into the
wilderness. How far do you think you could go in a day?

B. You might want to use a large piece of paper to make a comparison chart of the different means of travel.

C.  Hands-on/ Multi-Sensory   Listen to a recording of a cougar or bobcat, and discuss how it would make you feel
to hear that sound if you were alone in the wilderness.

D. While driving in your car this week, compare how it feels to ride at 3 mph to how it feels to ride at 60 mph (or
whatever speed is normal in your area.) Three miles an hour is the average speed for a human to walk. A horse
walks a little faster, but even a running horse is much slower than a car's highway speed.

E. Have children watch the sky (not the weather channel) and try to predict the weather this week. If you have an
outdoor thermometer or barometer, have them record the readings once a day or more. Older children can use
this information to make a graph or chart.

F. If your children are interested, try to find some books or websites on meterology.

Research Materials for Adults and Upper High School Students:

John Murrell (Outlaw)- Wikipedia
The Children' Blizzard  by David Laskin
G. & D. Cook & Co.'s
Illustrated Catalogue of Carriages and Special Business Advertiser (Reprinted by Dover). This
book is apparently currently out of print, but you may be able to find a copy in a resale bookstore or at Amazon.
Mosemans Illustrated Guide for purchasers of horse furnishing goods: Imported and Domestic  (Another Reprint by
Dover.) These come in both hard-cover and soft-bound editions, and I believe there are some slight differences
between the two.
Steamboats on the Western Rivers by Louis C. Hunter
Frontier Living


Possible Activities

A. Visit an historical home in your area. You might be prepared to have the students photograph or sketch the
home, or write a paragraph about it and its history.

B. Plan a 19th century night at your house, where you turn off the TV and see what it would be like to work by
candle or lamp-light.

C. Allow students to research how many of the people in 3rd World countries live today.  Many people still live in
simple huts without electricity, or even in “houses” made of cardboard and scavenged materials.

D. Make dip candles.

E. Small children may enjoy just playing with Lincoln logs or a similar toy. Explain how the settlers cut the notches
in the ends of the logs so that the logs would stack together. They filled any cracks between the logs with a mud-
mixture. Children could even do this with sticks and mud in the yard.

Research Materials for Adults and Upper High School Students
The American Home


Possible Activities

A. Prepare a “common” southern meal of hot water cornbread, turnip greens and black eyed peas.   

B. Prepare a dish out of Godey’s Lady’s Book (see recipes in this section)  

C. Churn butter using one of the methods described in this section.

D. Prepare or sample a regional food common in your area (such as maple syrup, or sauerkraut.)

E. Make catsup (ketchup).

F. Make “light” bread or corn bread from scratch.

G. If you can find a suitable flat rock for a base, and a rounded rock as a grinder, you can grind corn the way the
Native Americans did. If you cannot obtain food-grade corn, you can get animal-feed grade corn at a feed store for
this purpose (but don't eat it.)

H. If you have a grist-mill in your area, you might arrange a visit.

Research Materials for Adults and Upper High School Students
The White House Cookbook
Civil War Recipes


Possible Activities

A.  Petting Farm or Zoo Field Trip

B. Plant a seed or even a small garden, if you do not normally grow a garden.

C. Weeding or hoeing:  Have children try to hoe up an area. It’s hard work!
This is what settlers without a plow had to do.

D. Farm Animal Game. You say the animal and the children make the sound, or you make the sound and the
children guess the animal.

E. The Gee and Haw Game   (Are you as smart as a mule?)
Oxen and other draft animals were trained to respond to the traditional commands of “Gee!” (Right) and “Haw!”
(Left).  To make them walk forward, the farmer might say “Walk on” or “Gee up!”.  “Whoa” means to stop.
Play this game like Red Light-Green Light. Students stand in a line in front of you, and you give the command.
This is a great way to use up children's excess energy, and they think it's funny.

F. Play Horse- Children in the 19th century enjoyed pretending to be horses. Companies even made and sold toy
reins. You can use a jump rope.  Put it around the child being the horse’s waist and then the other child can
“drive” the horse.  Children often really enjoy this.

G.  “Train” your horses.  Horses and mules have different “gaits” (ways of moving their legs). Although with our 2
legs we can’t really imitate them, the students can still have fun.  Make them go around in a big circle, like
lunging a horse. They can “walk” then “trot” (a bumpy, 2-beat gait. They can march quickly or bounce) Then
“canter” or “lope” (they can skip, going smoothly). Then “gallop” (run). Another great way to burn up excess

H. Make a cotton-ball sheep. (For younger children). Glue cotton balls onto a drawing of a sheep. If the sheep is
printed or drawn on card-stock you can cut it out, add googly eyes and wooden clothes pins for legs. You can also
print or draw a sheep shape on regular paper, draw a background, and let children put cotton balls on it.

I. Make a curled-paper sheep. Similar to above, except uses small strips of paper wound into circles (like quilling)
for the sheep's "wool."

Research Materials for Adults
Storey's Guides. These books cover many different types of farm animals, and they are a great resource.

There are also plenty of books about many types of domestic animals available at your local library or bookstore.

VII. Cloth of Gold: Fiber, Spinning and Weaving

You may wish to combine this lesson with the Fashion lesson, or skip the Fashion lesson.

Possible Activities

A. Visit a local cotton field, gin, or a farm that raises sheep.

B. Try to find a person who spins, or watch a spinning or weaving demonstration on YouTube.

C. Make a home-made drop-spindle.  (Instructions in section).   At the very least, you can use your fingers to
“spin” a short thread from a cotton ball.

D. Introduce children to knitting or crochet.

E. Purchase different types of fiber from stores (like The Woolery) that cater to hand-spinners.  

F. Paper "Quilt Blocks".  Have children cut out simple blocks or geometrical shapes and paste them onto paper to
form “quilt blocks.” Or, draw or copy quilt block patterns for them to color.

G. Make a simple loom and demonstrate weaving. You can also demonstrate weaving on a bead-loom purchased
from a hobby-store or one of the old "pot holder" type looms.

H. With scraps from your rag-bag, or during a trip to the fabric store, have children compare and contrast
different types of fabrics and different weaves of fabric. Show them the care methods that are indicated on the
ends of the bolts. Discuss with them why different types of fabrics have different care requirements.

I. Amazing Shrinking Fabrics. Obtain a scrap of 100% cotton and a scrap of 100% wool. Measure them both very
carefully, or even draw around them carefully. Then wash both of them in hot water. When dry and ironed (if
necessary), compare them to the original measurement.

J. Do the fabric burn test experiment. (Adult supervision required.) Students can see how different types of fabrics
react to flame, and why synthetics are dangerous to wear around an open fire.

K. If you are really brave, let the students dye some 100% cotton fabric, such as a T-shirt. You can buy tie-dye
kits at almost any local hobby shop. You can also dye fabric using natural dyes (such as onion skin), which would
be very educational for older children. There are books and sites online that delineate different natural dyes and
the mordants needed. In a pinch, children can dye a piece of fabric, and often themselves,  using food coloring.

VII B- (Optional)  The Glass of Fashion: Sewing and Style

Possible Activities

A.  Have students look at illustrations of historic costume, or notice historic costume on movies.

B.  Assemble materials for children to do a sewing or leather craft, if desired.  Young children can use sewing

C. Plan a simple sewing project, such as an apron or pillow case.

D.  Purchase some of the Dover historic coloring books or paper doll books. These
are wonderful.

E.   If you have extra old fabric, or can buy some sheets cheaply, consider making a braided rug. You can dye the
fabric with Rit dye or even natural dyes if you wish. Then cut the fabric into long strips and braid them together.
When you come to the end of one strip, sew on another. Braid them until you have a long braid, then  coil them
around and sew them into a rug.

F. Enlarge a pattern by hand. (See below in math section.)

G. Draft a simple pattern for a doll skirt or blouse. (See below)

H. Make a monogram. Choose fancy initials from those provided below and either color them
(younger children), draw or copy them onto a pillow case and either fabric-paint them or embroider them.

Cleaning and Washing

Possible Activities

A. Have children wash a few clothes, even doll clothes, by hand and hang them to dry. If you have a miniature
scrub-board, that is great. Remember that early in the 19th century, many people still washed clothes by beating
them with a paddle.

B. Older students can practice ironing, with adult supervision.

C. Show older children how to starch clothes.

D. Lye soap-making is not a craft for children due to the caustic nature of the lye. Students
CAN help with a glycerin-soap (melt in the microwave) soap craft.

E. Fill a gallon bucket or jug with water and let students take turns carrying it. If you had to carry         every
gallon of water you used, how would it change the way you cleaned and bathed?

F. Polishing Silver.  If you have any silver or copper, show children how to clean it. Silver was relatively less
expensive in the past and many people had at least silver-plate if not sterling silver.

G. Shine Shoes.  In these days of tennis shoes, some children never learn how to polish shoes. Give them some

H. This is also a good time to show children how to make a bed, if they don't already know how to do so. Making a
19th century bed was a little more difficult at times, especially with a feather-bed, which had to be smoothed.

I.  Beating Carpets. Before the vacuum cleaner, the only way to remove dust from carpets and rugs was the hang
them outside and beat them with a stick or carpet-beater. This is also a good exercise for younger children with too
much energy.

IX. All of Us in Good Health:
Sickness, Medicine, and Death

Possible Activities

A. Visit a local cemetery and observe, draw, or photograph the gravestones. Many 19th century gravestones had
Christian symbols on them or Bible verses. You can do an entire project just on cemetery headstones and
Christian symbols. Keep this focused on the positive: the beauty of the headstones and how people used to honor
God by including Christian symbols.

B. Mortality Schedules. You may be able to obtain mortality schedules from your local area. This is most
appropriate for Senior High students.

C. Study medicinal herbs in your area. Discuss what these herbs were/are used for.

D. Be prepared to discuss superstitions regarding health and wellness: wearing red flannel or coral beads to retard

E. Be prepared to discuss both the benefits and limitations of medical science. Today some people see science as
having all the answers, but from history we know that even men of science may be badly mistaken. At times
scientists and doctors have done things that have harmed patients rather than helped them. Doctors and scientists
are only human; only God knows everything about our bodies. However, God has worked through many doctors to
relieve suffering.

F. Discuss Leprosy. Children who are raised hearing the Bible may be surprised to learn that "leprosy" still exists,
although it may be different from some types of leprosy mentioned in the Bible. Today it is known as Hanson's
Disease and it's treatable. The U.S. Leprosarium at Carville, La. was one of the few places that those with
Hanson's Disease could go for treatment (actually, they didn't always choose to go there, but that's another story.)
There is a documentary entitled Triumph at Carville about this subject.

G. This is also an opportunity to discuss those with disabilities. It was during the 19th century that Louis Braille
developed his writing system for the blind, and that the first known attempts were made to educate those who were
deaf-blind, such as Laura Bridgeman and Helen Keller.

H. Let children transcribe their names into Braille or learn their names in sign language.

Research Materials for Adults and High School Students

There are a number of documentaries about 19th century epidemics. The story of Typhoid Mary is especially
interesting, and raises many questions about an individual's civil rights.  

X. Readin’ Writing and Ciphering:
Education & Communication

Possible Activities  

A. 19th Century Schoolbooks.  If you do not use McGuffey's reader or other 19th century textbooks, now might be
a good time for students to be able to see these and read from some of them. This is a good time to have an "old
time school-day."

B. Have children write on a slate with a slate pencil.  (The latter is hard to find and you may have to use chalk.)

C. Have children try to write with a quill pen or a dip-pen and ink.  Try some of the Spencerian script.

D. Give children some problems from Ray's Arithmetic

E. If your town's museum or library has old newspapers on microfilm, let students read some of the articles.

F.  If your family has any old documents, show them to your children.

G.  Boys and some girls learned Latin, Greek, or Hebrew. If your curriculum does not include any of the ancient
languages, show examples of these to the children and even have them try to copy some words.

H. Paper was a valuable commodity, especially in the early 19th century. Discuss with children how you could do
schoolwork without paper. What changes would need to be made?

I.  Let students transcribe their names into Morse Code.

XII That Old-Time Religion:
Religion, Poverty & Charity

Possible Activities

A.  Be prepared to discuss your denomination's beliefs with your children. When did your denomination begin?
Where? What are some key beliefs that differentiate it from other Christian denominations?

. Listen to shaped-note singing. This unusual-sounding singing was very common in the 19th century, and was
taught at singing schools.  You can also listen to other hymns, and learn about famous hymn-writers.

. Build a model of a brush arbor. This is easily done with a few stick and some branches or brush over the top.

. Be prepared to discuss poverty with students, especially older students. What constitutes poverty today?  What
constituted poverty in the 19th century?  Our higher standard of living has changed how we define poverty in the
United States.

E. This would be an excellent time to research and discuss with the students the various charities that Christians
have founded or operate in your local community: hospitals, schools, children's homes, food banks, clothes closets,
etc. Often we forget how much "good" Christians have done in the world. Why do Christians interest themselves
in charitable work?

. Of course any time is a good time to do works of love and compassion: visiting nursing homes, helping out at
soup kitchens, donating items to missions and homeless shelters. Students need to see this in action and on an on-
going basis. Even the youngest student can make a card for a person in a nursing home.  

XII Play Time & Recreation

Possible Activities

. Classic Children's Games:  Marbles is a good historic game for children to play, although not around very young
 Other good games are: jacks, hopscotch, jump rope, ring around the rosy, hide and seek, London Bridge,
The Farmer in the Dell, Uncle John, Fox and Geese, even
checkers or chess.

. Cut paper dolls from paper and let students color them or dress them with crepe paper.

. Children DID make cornhusk and have hankerchief dolls, but these crafts may be a bit over-done. Instead,
girls may want to make a cookie-cutter-type rag doll or a stuffed toy made from printed fabric.

. If there is a ceramics shop in your area that makes doll heads, students may be able to visit to learn how
porcelain and china dolls were made. You can also buy inexpensive doll heads at many craft and hobby shops.

.  Several companies still make metal "toy soldiers".  These were favorite toys for boys. There were also "lead"
farm animal sets, circuses, hunting sets. etc.  The modern equiva
lent would be plastic soldiers and farm sets.

. Some hobby and craft stores sell small wooden toys, such as trains, the children might enjoy painting.
Of course, students with wood working skills might enjoy making their own.

.  Many stores sell small but functional pans in which younger students can actually bake tiny pies and cakes.
These "patty pans" were very popular with 19th century children.

. Rolling hoops was a favorite pastime, but unfortunately these hoops can be hard to find. If you have a large
wooden embroidery hoop that you're not using, or even a metal wagon-wheel hoop (that's what many of the
originals were) the children can play rolling hoops. 19th century children guided their hoops with sticks. In the
20th century, there were smaller metal hoops that were guided with sticks with a semi-circle of metal (originally
part of a metal can) tacked on the end. Rolling hoops and having hoop races is good fun.

Bibliography & Other Resources For Adults and Upper High-School

(I'll try to continue adding to this list.)

Agriculture, Farming, 19th Century Implements and Husbandry

Bowers, Steve and Steward, Marlen.  Country Workshop: Farming with Horses. St. Paul, MN: Voyageur Press, 2006.  
This is a modern book that shows different types of harness and hitches. It is a good book, with lots of photos, but
it does NOT show different types of farm implements, however.

Antebellum Plantation, Civil War, & Southern Life

Clinton, Catherine. The Plantation Mistress: Woman's World in the Old South. New York: Pantheon Books, 1982.

Faust, Drew Gilpin.
Mothers of Invention: Women of the Slaveholding South in the American Civil War. New York:
Vintage Books, 1996.

Garcia, Celine Fremaux  ed. by Patrick J. Geary.
Celine: Remembering Louisiana 1850-1871. Athens: University of
Georgia Press, 1987.

Jones, Katharine M., ed.
Heriones of Dixie: Spring of High Hopes. St. Simons Island, GA: Mockingbird Books, 1955.

McMillen, Sally G.
Motherhood in the Old South: Pregnancy, Childbirth and Infant Rearing.
Baton Rouge: LSU Press, 1990

Silverthorne, Elizabeth.
Plantation Life in Texas. College Station: Texas A & M U.P., 1986.

Children, Boys and Girls and Young Adults (see also Antebellum Plantation Life and the Toys sections.)

Sloane, Eric. Diary of an Early American Boy: Noah Blake 1805. Mineola, New York: Dover. 1990.  Eric Sloane's
drawings are incredible. They will greatly interest any young person who is technologically inclined or has an
interest in material culture.

Flander, Judith. Inside the Victorian Home: A Portrait of Domestic Life in Victorian England. New York: W. W.
Norton & Company, 2004. First American Edition.

Hart, Albert Bushnell and Annie Bliss Chapman.
How Our Grandfathers Lived: Source Readers in American History
No. 3
 New York: MacMillan, 1923. This was a textbook used at my father's school in the 1950s, and it is a
wonderful compilation of reprints of primary documents.

Laskin, David.
The Children's Blizzard. New York: Harper Collins, 2004.

Riis, Jacob A.
How the Other Half Lives. New York: Dover, 1971. (Reprint of the text of the 1901 edition originally
published in 1890 by Charles Scribner's Sons.)  While this book is almost beyond the scope of this study, this is a
classic work on poverty and the lives of tenement-dwellers.

Tunis, Edward.
Frontier Living. Cleveland: World Publishing Company, 1961.  Along with Eric Sloan, Edwin Tunis
has some incredibly illustrated books about 18th and 19th century life. Try to find a copy of this book.

Fashion and Clothing  (See also, Sewing)

Godey's Lady's Book was the most popular and widely-read woman's magazine of the 19th century, including
fictional stories, poetry, music, crafts, needlework, fashions, recipes and house-hold hints. There are a few scanned
copies of Godey's Lady's Book available on-line.  If you have access to these magazines, be sure and look at an
original copy. They provide a wealth of information about 19th century life.  Other 19th Century magazines you
may run across are Harper's Bazaar (which featured high-fashion clothing and patterns,) Arthur's Home
Magazine, The Lady's Wreath, and the late 19th Century Delineator, which was published by the Butterick Pattern

Dover Publications produces a huge number of fashion-related reprints, coloring books, and paper doll books. They
are excellent resources. I have listed only a few here, but there are many, many more.

Blum, Stella, ed. Fashions and Costumes from Godey's Lady's Book: Including 8 Plates in Full Color. New York:
Dover Publications, 1985.

Bryk, Nancy Villa, ed..
American Dress Pattern Catalogs, 1873-1909: Four Complete Reprints. New York: Dover
Publications, 1988.

Mills, Betty J.
Calico Chronicle: Texas Women and their Fashions, 1830-1910. Lubbock, Texas:Texas Tech Press,

Olian, JoAnne, ed.
80 Godey's Full-Color Fashion Plates 1838-1880. Mineola, New York:Dover, 1998.

Olian, JoAnne, ed.
Victorian and Edwardian Fashions form "La Mode Illustree." Mineola, New York: Dover, 1998.


Bruce, Dickson D. Jr. And They All Sang Hallelujah: Plain-Folk Camp-Meeting Religion, 1800-1845. Knoxville:The
University of Tennessee Press, 1974.


Dudden, Faye E. Serving Women: Household Service in Nineteenth-Century America. Middletown, Conn.: Wesleyan
University Press, 1983.  This book covers more of the early part of the 19th century, discussing the change from
"help" to "servants."

Katzman, David M.
Seven Days a Week: Women and Domestic Service in Industrializing America  Urbana: University
of Illinois Press, 1981.  Illini Books Edition.  This book covers the period 1870-1920.

Sewing, Patterns, Needlework and Women's Crafts   (See also, Fashion)

Lady, A. The Workwoman's Guide: A Guide to 19th Century Decorative Arts, Fashion and Practical Crafts.  
(Containing Instructions to the Inexperienced in Cutting out and Completing those articles of Wearing Apparel,
&c., which are usually made at Home; Also, Explanations on upholstery, Straw-Plaiting, Bonnet-Making, Knitting,
&c.  London: Simpkin, Marshall, and Co., 1838.   Reprinted by Piper Publishing, 2002.    Although this is an
English book, it is an incredible wealth of information about early 19th century clothing and sewing methods. It
has many patterns (given in reduced scale) and was to be used to help housewives use fabric more efficiently as
well as to give patterns to help women who were sewing for the poor.

Warren, Mrs., and Mrs. Pullan.
Treasures in Needlework. New York: Lancer Books, 1973.  This is a reprint of a c.
1870 book, and contains patterns for many different types of historical needlework: knitting, crochet, lacemaking,

Sidesaddles and Aside Riding

Spooner, Patricia and Victoria. Allen Photographic Guides: All About Riding Sidesaddle. London: J.A. Allen, 2007
This is a good book if you wish to learn how to ride aside in an English discipline. It does not cover
western sidesaddle
riding or historical costumes or riding. It is a VERY short book, but the photos are good.

Friddle, Martha Coe. and Bowlby, Linda A.
The Sidesaddle Legacy: How to Ride Aside the American Way. Bucyrus,
Ohio: World Sidesaddle Federation, 2002. This book contains historical information as well as modern instructions
for sidesaddle riding.

Bristol, Olivia. Dolls: A Collector's Guide. New York:Stewart, Tabori & Chang, 1997.   This is an Americanized
British book, but still has some wonderful information,

Herlocher, Dawn.
200 Years of Dolls:4th Edition. Iola, WI: Krause Publications, 2009.

McClinton, Katharine Morrison.
Antiques of American Childhood. New York: Bramhall House, 1970.

Travel  (Steamboats, Rafts, Trains, Carriages, etc.)

Moseman, C.M. and Brother. Moseman's Illustrated Catalog of Horse Furnishing Goods, An Unabridged Republication
of the Fifth Edition.
New York: Dover Publications, 1987.  Reprint of catalog first published about 1893.

Rittenhouse, Jack D. ed.
American Horse-Drawn Vehicles: A Reproduction of 218 Authentic Reproductions of 183
Early American Horse-Drawn Vehicles
. New York: Bonanza Books, 1948.    This is a good book, but may be hard to
find. Your local library should be able to borrow a copy through interlibrary loan, or you may be able to purchase a
copy through Alibris or Amazon.


Planning & Possible Activities to Choose From

Vocabulary- Choose which words fit your students' levels.

General Information Readings.  Sometimes there is one reading and sometimes more.  Sometimes there are
readings for younger students and others for advanced students  

Readings taken from or adapted from primary sources.

Some lessons also contain role-playing scripts.

EXTRAS: English, Math, Coloring Pages, Etc. These are just some simple exercises that may or may not have to
do with the topic, but you can use them with your children if you wish.

right-click on an illustration and copy it into a Word document, then resize it to make a
coloring sheet or illustration for a lap book.