This Week in Geographic History: March 5-March 11

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, March 5

Illustration design by Henry Pelham, engraved by Paul Revere, courtesy Library of Congress

TDIGH 1770: Boston Massacre

The conflict intensified the American colonists’ demand for liberty from Great Britain, pushing them closer to the Revolutionary War.

Map: Take a look at the huge territory of the New England colonies. Why do students think Boston was the focus of the revolt?

Background: Timeline of the American Revolution

Activity: Learn how one of our educators allows students to better understand the Boston Massacre through innovative image analysis and technology.


Tuesday, March 6

Engraving courtesy Library of Congress

TDIGH 1857: Dred Scott Decision

The Supreme Court ruling denied citizenship to African Americans and established each state’s right to allow slavery.

Map: Dred Scott, a slave, had been taken to Illinois, a free state, and then Wisconsin territory. Scott lived in Wisconsin with his master for several years before returning to Missouri, a slave state. How did the Dred Scott decision overrule the 1820 Missouri Compromise?

Background: Interactive timeline of slavery in the U.S.

Activity: Watch this video about the Dred Scott decision. What did the Supreme Court’s ruling mean for freed blacks? For the abolitionist movement? Do you agree that the Dred Scott decision was the “worst Supreme Court decision of all time”?


Wednesday, March 7

Police attack protesters on “Bloody Sunday,” a pivotal moment in the Selma-to-Montgomery marches.
Photograph courtesy FBI

TDIGH 1965: Civil Right’s ‘Bloody Sunday’

Police violently attacked civil rights protesters’ first attempt to march from Selma, Alabama, to the state capitol in Montgomery.

Map: Navigate the Selma to Montgomery National Historic Trail

Background: Learn the causes and outcomes of the Selma-to-Montgomery marches with our through resource.

Activity: Use this fantastic lesson plan to help students find their own “Bridge to Selma.”


Saturday, March 10

Map by National Geographic

TDIGH 1804: Louisiana Purchased

The Louisiana Territory doubled the size of the United States when it was officially transferred from France.

Map: Explore the Louisiana Purchase with the interactive map of Lewis and Clark’s trail.

Background: What was the Louisiana Purchase?

Activity: Read this summary of the purchase and answer the discussion questions about the constitutionality of the Louisiana Purchase and President Thomas Jefferson’s decision-making process.


Sunday, March 11

An emergency hospital at Camp Funston, Kansas, cared for large numbers of soldiers sickened by the 1918 flu.
Photo courtesy National Museum of Health and Medicine

TDIGH 1918: Flu Pandemic Begins

Between 1918 and 1919, more people died from a powerful strain of influenza than from fighting in World War I.

Visual: Photo gallery: Influenza  

Background: Learn about the literal evolution of the flu with this great, teacher-written resource.

Activity: Test your knowledge about pandemics and epidemics with this quiz!

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