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Complete the Primary Source Essay 3 by choosing one of the three selections below.

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Essay Instructions:

Select ONE of the primary source readings from those included below and write an essay on the selection. In writing this essay, integrate information from the textbook with the primary source reading. Write an introduction paragraph and present a thesis to the reader. Choose relevant and specific examples to support your arguments in an appropriate number of body paragraphs. Write a unified essay while answering each of the bulleted questions and organize the information by placing it in logical sequence. Come to a conclusion in a separate paragraph.

The use of any other sources beyond the one(s) assigned as well as the textbook in writing the essay is not expected. If other sources are used to gather information they must be documented and “historical” or written by a professional historian. If information (not just quotations) is used from a source and not documented, that is plagiarism, a form of cheating. See the section on documentation and Academic Honesty in the Syllabus. Also, if direct quotations are used from the sources assigned, textbook, or any other material they must be properly documented and a works cited page included.

Essays should be 700 to 900 words long, double-spaced with normal margins, in a 12 font, and your name and a title at the top. Indicate paragraph separation by indenting the first line rather than adding additional space. The essay should be in formal English, using proper spelling, grammar and punctuation. Late papers may be downgraded 10% for every day late. Again, 700 words is the minimum requirement. Failure to follow through on these guidelines will result in a less than desirable grade. Save the essay with your last name and Primary Source Essay 3 as the title.

Submit the essay by following the instructions associated with the link at the bottom of this page.

Assignment Selections:

Reading Texts in Older English:

The selections below are from the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Because many of the words used may be unfamiliar, use a dictionary. Read these sources slowly to extract the meaning and treat every clause like a sentence. Always look for the declarative statement that the author is trying to convey amidst his ornamentation. After becoming more accustomed to reading these texts, students can begin to relish the beauty of the language. Since written language was the only mode of distance communication, even people with very little formal education wrote very well.

Primary Source Selections and Topics (the readings are available directly below these instructions):

1. READ:

Sources: Jefferson and the Presidency
Using the text and primary source readings, write an essay on the development of the presidency and its powers under Jefferson and Madison while answering the following questions:

  • In his First Inaugural Address how did Jefferson explain his vision of the ideal government and the responsibilities of the president?
  • How successful was Jefferson in carrying out that vision during his presidency?
  • How did Jefferson justify his Louisiana Purchase when it clearly was not in accordance with what he viewed as the role of the federal government?
  • What challenges under Jefferson and Madison led to the increasing complex government?


Sources: Indian Removal Documents
Using the text and primary source readings, write an essay on the causes and results of Indian Removal while answering the following questions:

  • What was foundation of the argument by the anonymous Cherokee?
  • According to the Cherokee, what were some of the problems associated with moving to Arkansas?
  • What points did Jackson suggest to Whites as to why the relocation was necessary? What were the main arguments given to Native Americans as to why they should move?
  • Were Jackson’s actions regarding Native American relocation understandable or unforgivable?


Sources: Film as a Primary Source (the folder below contains a document to read and a short 1915 film to watch)
Using the text (read ahead: Chapter 11, section 11.3), a reading in the file, and the film, write an essay on the battle for the Alamo, the film Martyrs of the Alamo, and the concept of historical memory:

  • How does the film, Martyrs of the Alamo, treat the subject matter? What agenda does it appear to have?
  • What does the film demonstrate about national perceptions of race in the early twentieth century?
  • What is “historical memory”?
  • How does Martyrs relate to the concept of “historical memory”?

video film for primary source

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