The Age of Jefferson and Madison

The essays in this section have been written by leading scholars of American history. They provide additional depth on events and ideas referred to in the introductory essay and, in some cases, different interpretations by historians looking at the same events. These essays are particularly useful as informational texts to introduce your students to one of the most exciting aspects of studying history—understanding the past from a variety of perspectives.

A map from History of the Expedition under the Command of Lewis and Clark. (GLC)

America the Newcomer: Claiming the Louisiana Purchase

Author: Elliott West Curriculum Subjects: Geography Grade Levels:
Dolley Madison (Gilder Lehrman Collection)

Dolley Madison: First Lady and Queen

Author: Catherine Allgor Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels:

The Battle for Baltimore

Author: Alan Taylor Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:

The US and Spanish American Revolutions

Author: Jay Sexton Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Geography, Government and Civics, World History Grade Levels:

Thomas Jefferson and Deism

Author: Peter S. Onuf Curriculum Subjects: Grade Levels:

Essays from Other Sub-Eras

“Washington and Lafayette at Valley Forge,” by Brown & Bigelow, 1907. (LOC)

Advice (Not Taken) for the French Revolution from America

Author: Susan Dunn Curriculum Subjects: World History Grade Levels: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Narrative and Correspondence, by William J. Duane (1838). (GLC02144)

Andrew Jackson and the Constitution

Author: Matthew Warshauer Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Abigail Adams, engraving by John Sartain, n.d. (Gilder Lehrman Collection)

First Ladies’ Contributions to Political Issues and the National Welfare

Author: Betty Boyd Caroli Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels:
Bank note from the Bank of the United States dated December 13, 1840. (GLC01994)

Getting Ready to Lead a World Economy: Enterprise in Nineteenth-Century America

Author: Joyce Appleby Curriculum Subjects: Economics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Louis Armstrong, 1953 (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs Division)

New Orleans and the History of Jazz

Author: Loren Schoenberg Curriculum Subjects: Art, Geography Grade Levels: 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Detail from the Preamble to the US Constitution, 1787. (GLC03585)

Ordinary Americans and the Constitution

Author: Gary B. Nash Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Patent signed by James Buchanan, May 28, 1846. (Gilder Lehrman Collection)

Technology of the 1800s

Author: Brent D. Glass Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics, Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
John Marshall and Roger B. Taney (Library of Congress Prints and Photographs)

The Marshall and Taney Courts: Continuities and Changes

Author: R. B. Bernstein Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Resolutions for amending the Constitution . . . , 1800. (GLC00927.02)

The Presidential Election of 1800: A Story of Crisis, Controversy, and Change

Author: Joanne B. Freeman Curriculum Subjects: Government and Civics Grade Levels: 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+
Note of 1 shilling, 6 pence, printed in the colony of New Jersey, 1776. (GLC)

The US Banking System: Origin, Development, and Regulation

Author: Richard Sylla Curriculum Subjects: Economics, Government and Civics Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+

A New Look at the Great Plains

Author: Elliott West Curriculum Subjects: Geography Grade Levels: 9, 10, 11, 12, 13+