This Week in Geographic History, January 8 – 14

Here’s an advance look at some of the “This Day in Geographic History” (TDIGH) events coming up this week. For each date, we’ve matched it with a map or visual, background information, and a classroom activity so you can plan ahead.

Check out our Pinterest board for more related resources!

Monday, January 8

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Andrew Jackson (who would later become the seventh U.S. president) leads American troops to victory against the British at the 1814 Battle of New Orleans. Illustration by Edward Percy Morgan, courtesy Library of Congress

TDIGH: Battle of New Orleans

In 1814, American forces defeated the British in the final battle of the War of 1812.

Visual: Photos, maps, and drawings about the battle

Background: Timeline of the War of 1812

Activity: Watch this video about how the War of 1812 began. Do you think the Americans were justified in declaring war? Why or why not?


Wednesday, January 10

TDIGH: London Underground Opens

The London Underground, which opened in 1863, is the oldest underground railway in the world.

Map: London Underground maps (1931 – 2015)

Background: Geostory on public transportation

Activity: What makes a good subway map? Read this article and answer the discussion questions.


Thursday, January 11

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Amidst the Grand Canyon’s breathtaking rock formations are waterfalls like Deer Creek Falls, shown here. Photograph by Pete McBride, National Geographic.

TDIGH: Grand Canyon Becomes a National Monument

President Theodore Roosevelt named the majestic gorge a national monument in 1908; it became a national park in 1919.

Map: The Grand Canyon

Background: What is a canyon?

Activity: How Old is the Grand Canyon?


Friday, January 12

TDIGH: Earthquake Devastates Haiti

The magnitude 7.0 earthquake that hit the small Caribbean nation in 2010 killed more than 200,000 people.

Map: Earthquakes around the world since 1900

Background: Video: Earthquakes 101

Activity: Read and discuss the deadliest earthquake of 2017.


Saturday, January 14

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A Japanese-American soldier escorts his mother to an internment camp in California in 1942. Photograph by US Govt. GSA National Archives, National Geographic.

TDIGH: Initial Idea for Japanese-American Internment

A month after the Japanese government’s attack on Pearl Harbor in 1941, President Franklin Delano Roosevelt introduced the idea of forced relocation.

Visual: Video – Picturing Japanese American Internment: Dorothea Lange

Background: The attack on Pearl Harbor

Activity: Explore arguments for and against the internment of Japanese Americans using this interactive.

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