EnCompass, Free RI History Digital Textbook, Releases Second Chapter


The RIHS and Providence College’s Phillips Memorial Library have released the second chapter of the free digital textbook of Rhode Island history, EnCompass.

This chapter, focusing on the industrial era in Rhode Island, features an essay by Gail Fowler Mohanty and primary sources from the RIHS collections. Geared mainly for middle and high school readers, but easily adaptable by teachers of lower grades, the chapter includes essays on child labor, labor unions and strikes, and Rhode Island’s changing economy and social life.

The first chapter, Roger Williams and the Founding of Rhode Island, was released in 2016 and revised in 2017. Forthcoming chapters include immigration in Rhode Island, Rhode Island’s early archaeology, and African American Struggle for Civil Rights in Rhode Island. The RIHS has also hired an Education Outreach Manager, Samantha Hunter, who is preparing to take the lead on this project.

“We are working to build this free and open resource to provide teachers and students of history an easily digestible way to find historical information and primary sources about our state and allow them to connect major national themes with local examples,” said Newell D. Goff Center for Education and Public Programs Director Geralyn Ducady.

Both chapters are aligned with Rhode Island Grade Span Expectations for Social Studies. The EnCompass project, utilizing images of primary sources and artifacts, aims to provide teachers with resources, content, and activities for their classrooms.

EnCompass was launched with the help of a grant from the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities.

Access chapter two here.

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