2019 Reading List

Teachers attending the workshop will be expected to complete all the “Must” readings, which are no more than 100 pages per day.

Accessing the readings:

  • Your stipend is intended to cover the cost of attending the workshop, including purchasing reading materials.
  • Many titles are available via Amazon’s Kindle app, which is a free app that can be used on any smartphone, tablet or computer – no Kindle device required. This is often less expensive and more convenient than other formats.
  • J-STOR allows access of up to six articles per month for free. Learn more here
  • If the workshop staff learn of additional ways to save money on the reading list, we will let enrolled teachers know!

SUNDAY – Introductions and Expectations

  • Could Read

    Watts, Steven. “Antiquarian.” The People’s Tycoon. New York: Vintage, 2005. Pp. 401-426.

    A comprehensive and fascinating biography organized around each of Henry Ford’s many identities. This chapter discusses his interest in history and creation of the Edison Institute, now known as The Henry Ford.

MONDAY – The Transition from Home to Factory Production

  • Must Read

    Larkin, Jack. “A Busy Industrious Population.” The Reshaping of Everyday Life: 1790-1840. New York: Harper & Row, 1988. Pp. 15-61.

    A social history perspective describing examples of working experiences of typical Americans during this period, ranging from enslaved people to women to men, using many quotes and shared memories. Provides a useful, relatable base for an understanding of industrialization, including topics that will be touched on all week.

    Schlereth, Thomas J. “Working.” Victorian America: Transformations in Everyday Life, 1876-1915. Pp. 33-85.

    From a social history perspective on the day-to-day experiences of Americans during this period, this chapter focuses on work experiences ranging from farms, to factories, to white-collar professionals. Includes useful statistics. Provides a useful, relatable base for an understanding of industrialization, including topics that will be touched on all week.

  • Should Read

    Ruth Schwartz Cowan. “The ‘Industrial Revolution’ in the Home: Household Technology and Social Change in the 20th Century.” Technology and Culture, vol. 17, no. 1, 1976, pp. 1–23. JSTOR, JSTOR, www.jstor.org/stable/3103251.

    This article investigates the interactions between technology and society, by zooming in on the important and peculiar technological revolution that has been happening in the home and exploring how it has impacted our daily lives in unexpected ways.

  • Could Read

    Cowan, Ruth Schwartz. “More Chores for Women, Fewer for Men.” More Work for Mother: The Ironies of Household Technology from the Open Hearth to the Microwave. New York: Basic Books, 1983. Pp. 3-63.

    This social history explores how as technology changed, women actually came to have more work to do – not less. This section is useful for learning about laws, gender roles, and foodways through the nineteenth century.

    Mintz, Steven. Huck’s Raft: A History of American Childhood. Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 2004. Pp. 133 – 184.

    Examining the transformation of children over the course of the nineteenth and twentieth century, these chapters unravel how industrialization and wartime have affected the lives and responsibilities of young Americans. The first chapter explores the lives of children working as apprentices, in factories, as domestic servants, in mines and on farms during the nineteenth century.

TUESDAY – Increasing Mechanization of Agriculture

  • Must Read

    Danbom, David B. “Rural Life in the Young Nation.” “The Unmaking and Remaking of the Rural South.” “Rural America in the Age of Industrialization.” Prosperity and Its Discontents.” Born in the Country: A History of Rural America. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1995. Pp. 86-184.

    This text, updated in 2018, provides the social and cultural history that creates additional context for the content Dr. Hurt will deliver in the lecture. These sections explore agriculture and farm life from the eighteenth through early twentieth centuries, from the East Coast to the expanding frontier to the South.

  • Should Read

    Rood, Daniel B. The Reinvention of Atlantic Slavery: Technology, Labor, Race and Capitalism in the Greater Caribbean. New York: Oxford University Press, 2017, pgs. 125-128; 148-151; 174-187.

    The focus on tobacco as a southern cash crop overshadows the role of other cash crops, adopted by farmers trying to stabilize their farm economy. As wheat remained a sought-after commodity, southern planters invested more in mechanizing the wheat harvest. Enslaved people played a role in all levels of wheat production, harvest and transport, including in the invention of the reaper – the mechanical harvester.

    Swanson, Drew A. A Golden Weed: Tobacco and Environment in the Piedmont South. New Haven: Yale University Press, 2014, pgs. 32-67.

    These excerpts explain the routines required to cultivate tobacco as a market crop, the factors that created a new preferred “bright-leaf” tobacco in the antebellum era, and the role of enslaved people in the process. The excerpts also address the ways that whites trivialized black influence during the 1880s while providing a corrective to that interpretation.

    Meyer, Carrie A. “The Farm Debut of the Gasoline Engine.” Agricultural History, Vol. 87, No. 3 (Summer 2013), Pp. 287-313. Published by Agricultural History Society. Accessible via JSTOR.

    This is a useful piece to connect with Friday’s topic, as it shows how use of the internal combustion engine on farms before and in conjunction with the adoption of automobiles and tractors.

    Hurt, R. Douglas. American Agriculture: A Brief History. Revised Edition. West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2002. Pp. 78-279.

    A more detailed history of American agriculture, written by our Visiting Scholar Doug Hurt.

  • Could Read

    Burlend, Rebecca. A True Picture of Emigration. Chicago: R. R. Donnelly, 1936.

    This primary source provides a real life story otherwise available only in Little House books. This chapter discusses the founding of their farm in Illinois in the 1830s, including the work of the mother, father and children.

    Olmstead, Alan L. and Paul W. Rhode. “Beyond the Threshold: An Analysis of the Characteristics and Behavior of Early Reaper Adopters.” The Journal of Economic History, Vol. 55, No. 1 (Mar., 1995), pp. 27-57. Published by Cambridge University Press. Accessible via JSTOR.

    This economic analysis explains how farmers working cooperatively with neighbors were most likely to invest in reaper technology in the mid-nineteenth century. Provides an excellent example of how math can be used in historical research.

    Reid, Debra A. “Historical Thinking.” Interpreting Agriculture at Museums and Historic Sites. Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2017. Pp. 50-54.

    Ideas on how historical thinking can be useful to helping students think about agriculture, from our own Curator of Agriculture, Debra Reid.

    Reid, Debra A. “Critical thinking about agricultural tools and equipment.”

    A one-page handout that lays out a methodology.

WEDNESDAY – The Impact of Steam Power on Transportation

  • Must Read

    White, John H., Jr. “Passenger Trains: Coach Class.” “Passenger Trains: First Class.” Wet Britches and Muddy Boots: A History of Travel in Victorian America. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2013. Pp. 407-486.

    This book allows readers to experience travel from both the passenger and worker perspective, while providing the necessary background on the technical, political and business aspects of each form of transportation.

  • Should Read

    White, John H., Jr. “River Steamers: White Swans on the Inland Rivers.” Wet Britches and Muddy Boots: A History of Travel in Victorian America. Bloomington: Indiana University Press, 2013. Pp. 179-222.

    This book allows readers to experience travel from both the passenger and worker perspective, while providing the necessary background on the technical, political and business aspects of each form of transportation.

  • Could Read

    Gordon, Sarah H. “Part One: Union Through Expansion, 1829-1861.” “Part Two: From Local Control to National Purpose, 1861-1890.” Passage to Union: How the Railroads Transformed American Life, 1829-1929. Chicago: Ivan R. Dee, 1997.

    This book unearths the political and legal conflicts that occurred as the railroads developed, explores the transformations in American life for both the positive and negative.

    Nelson, Scott Reynolds. Steel Drivin’ Man: John Henry, the Untold Story of an American Legend. (Oxford, UK: Oxford University Press, 2008).

    The author recounts how he uncovered the truth behind the railroad man who could blast through rock faster than a steam drill. Evidence shows that John Henry was a real man, victimized by Virginia’s notorious Black Codes, and forced to labor on a C&O Railroad tunnel.

THURSDAY – The Increasing Significance of Science and Systematic Invention

  • Must Read

    Israel, Paul B. "Inventing industrial research: Thomas Edison and the Menlo Park laboratory." Endeavour 26.2 (2002). Pp. 48-54.

    In the 1870s, American inventor Thomas Edison forged the first industrial research. At his laboratory at Menlo Park, New Jersey, Edison merged the machine shop with sophisticated electrical and chemical laboratories and employed teams of researchers who could experiment on all aspects of his inventions and move them rapidly from research to development and commercialization. Written by our visiting Scholar, Paul Israel.

  • Should Read

    Hintz, Eric S. "Independent Inventors in an Era of Burgeoning Research & Development." Business and Economic History On-line: Papers Presented at the BHC Annual Meeting. Vol. 5. Business History Conference, 2007.

    In this scholarly article, Hintz explores the case of an independent inventor Samuel Ruben and his primary licensee, the P. R. Mallory Company. Ruben licensed his patents to manufacturing firms. Mallory followed a hybrid innovation strategy, working with outside inventors like Ruben while simultaneously investing in its own integrated research and development laboratories.

  • Could Read

    Carlson, W. Bernard. "Inventor of dreams." Scientific American 292.3 (2005). Pp. 78-85.

    This highly readable article with primary source photographs explains how Nikola Tesla, the father of today’s AC electrical system and other key inventions, often failed to bring his visionary ideas to real-world fruition. Tesla is always a topic teachers inquire about on Day 5!

    Khan B. Zorina, "Not for Ornament: Patenting Activity by Nineteenth-Century Women Inventors," Journal of Interdisciplinary History, 31:2 (2000), pp. 159-195. 

    This scholarly article addresses the relationship between women and technology, both as producers and as consumers, by analyzing patterns of patenting and commercialization. The data set comprises a sample of 4,196 patents filed in the United States by approximately 3,300 women inventors between 1790 and 1895. 

    MacDonald, Anne L. "New Women in a New Century." Feminine Ingenuity: Women and Invention in America. New York: Random House, 1992. Pp. 240-268.

    This chapter highlights stories of women inventors and their inventions from the early 1900s.

    Singer, Bayla. “Inventing a Better Life: Latimer's Technical Career, 1880-1928.” Blueprint for Change: The Life and Times of Lewis H. Latimer. New York: Queens Borough Public Library, 2005. 

    A biography of Lewis Latimer’s technical career, drawn from archival sources including those at The Henry Ford. Latimer was an African-American inventor who contributed to the development of the telephone and light bulb.

    Fouché, Rayvon. Black Inventors in the Age of Segregation. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 2003.

    This book follows Granville T. Woods, Lewis H. Latimer, and Shelby J. Davidson. It shows how the men navigated their inventing careers amidst a Jim Crow world.

FRIDAY – The Development and Impact of the Assembly Line

  • Must Read

    Hounshell, David. “The Ford Motor Company and the Rise of Mass Production in America.” “Cul-de-Sac: The Limits of Fordism and the Coming of ‘Flexible Mass Production.’” From the American System to Mass Production, 1800-1932: The Development of Manufacturing Technology in the United States (Baltimore: Johns Hopkins University Press, 1984) pp. 217-301.

    These two chapters tell the story of Henry Ford and Ford Motor Company in an engaging way with illustrations from primary sources.

    Watts, Steven. “Despot.” The People’s Tycoon. New York: Vintage, 2005. Pp. 444-462.

    This chapter tells the story of the unionization of Ford Motor Company, and Harry Bennett, the head of security who violently battled the unions and workers. It also brings in some of the workers’ perspective on assembly line work.

  • Should Read

    Bates, Beth Tompkins. Black Detroit in the Age of Henry Ford. Chapel Hill: University of North Carolina Press, 2012.

    This volume begins with Henry Ford’s forward-looking decision to open industrial jobs to black workers and continues with their realization that Ford did not offer equality by any means. It shows how they played a pivotal role in the UAW and the civil rights movement in Detroit.

  • Could Read

    Casey, Robert. The Model T: A Centennial History. Baltimore: Johns Hopkins, 2008. 

    This book by The Henry Ford’s retired Curator of Transportation discusses how the Model T was built, sold and driven, including the experience of driving a Model T and its engineering innovations. Beautiful color primary source illustrations. Casey will be joining us on Friday – bring your copy of the book for an autograph!

    Watts, Steven. The People’s Tycoon. New York: Vintage, 2005.

    For those who are interested, read more of this excellent biography of Henry Ford. It includes stories we often find teachers are interested in, including Ford’s childhood, his son Edsel, the Ford Sociological Department, and Ford’s anti-Semitic views.