civil war

Curriculum Project:

"A Connecticut Curriculum on the Civil War"


Project Coordinator: Dr. John Day Tully, Department of History, CCSU   

April 2011 marks the 150th anniversary of the American Civil War.  When the war began, Connecticut regiments were called to arms by decrees from President Lincoln and Connecticut Governor Buckingham.  The state offered 55,000 men, ten percent of its population, who served in every major engagement of the war.  The state's industrial capacity, especially its arms industry, was instrumental to the North's success.  On the homefront, most residents rallied for the Union and the troops.  Every community, big and small, was significantly affected by the war. 

A variety of organizations throughout the state are working together to engage in a commemoration of Connecticut's role in the Civil War.  This commemoration will include scholarly and public oriented publications, web materials, a documentary film, teacher curriculum units, and a series of community exhibits in towns across Connecticut.  Preparations are well underway.

Project Goal
The primary goal of the proposed project is to create a working group of secondary level social studies educators throughout Connecticut who will create Civil War projects for their students, in partnership with community historical organizations located in the educator's town or district. 

The overall goals from this collaboration is fourfold: 

1)  To teach students about the Civil War by utilizing primary source documents and other materials. 

2)  To teach students about the value of and amazing collections held by community historical organizations. 

3)  To develop out of the overall project a Connecticut curriculum on the state's involvement in the Civil War. 

4)  To discover and document new collections and findings that are not currently known. 


What are the major activities to be undertaken?

  • Letters will be mailed to all social studies teachers and social studies departments in the state of Connecticut, inviting them to participate in the project.
  • These partners will be in addition to existing partners via the History is Central TAH Grant.
  • Collaborate with Connecticut Council for the Social Studies and the Connecticut League of History Organizations to partner schools with local historical organizations.
  • Host a workshop at CCSU to discuss the project and its long-term objectives.
  • Facilitate student projects, including but not limited to document transcription, image cataloguing, development of exhibit materials, etc.
  • Support the new State of Connecticut Social Studies Curriculum guidelines by incorporating more local and state history in the secondary level curriculum.


What is the time frame for accomplishing these activities?

The timeframe for the initial stages of this project is the 2009-2010 academic year.  The initial stage will be focused on making contacts, and collaborative, mutually beneficial partnerships between CCSU, middle/high schools, and community history organizations.  The second phase of the project will follow, which will be comprised of implementing the various Civil War projects just prior to during the 150th commemoration period, from 2011-2015.

Teachers and schools interested in taking part in the curriculum project should contact Dr. Tully at