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Online U.S. History Textbooks

Photo, In the Computer Lab, Old Shoe Woman, September 16, 2005, http://www.flick

Do you know of any good online US history textbooks?


Online textbook options are convenient, inexpensive, and environmentally friendly. The key is finding one that is reliable, meets the needs of your students, and complies with district standards—so you will want to explore some to find one that fits your needs. We know of a few online textbooks that will help you get started in your search. Digital History, a project hosted by the University of Houston, offers an easy-to-use, high-quality textbook. Digital History is also a good resource for supplementary classroom materials including primary sources, e-lectures, and lesson plans.

USHistory.org, created and hosted by the non-profit Independence Hall Association, also offers a complete illustrated U.S. history text that is clearly organized by topic and easy for students to use. A third option is the Outline of U.S. History, which is produced and maintained by the U.S. State Department. The Outline is a fairly comprehensive textbook, and is accompanied by useful supplementary resources, including historian essays and a briefer version of the textbook.

Finally, Wikibooks offers a U.S. history textbook that is fairly comprehensive and easy to use. On a cautionary note, Wikibooks is an open source site (like Wikipedia), so teachers will want to carefully monitor the content of the site to be certain that the material is accurate and useful.