Colonial History Gerald Dyson (

Colonial History Gerald Dyson (

Source Study Assignment

This assignment is intended to give students practical experience in the assessment of primary sources from the Colonial period and this document will give you some guidance on the successful completion of your source studies. Remember that your study should be approximately 1,200 words in length and should be submitted in Chicago format.

Use the questions below to guide your inquiry and research into the given primary sources. I do not recommend that you list the questions and your answers to them in your paper as this is not a very attractive, engaging, or thoughtful way of presenting your ideas. You should instead try to integrate the answers to these questions into your paper as a whole. A good guide on how you might want to structure this sort of study has been made available by Western Michigan University (

· At what date(s) was the evidence produced?

· Who or what was responsible for producing the evidence?

· What was the reason for the production of the evidence?

· Who was the intended audience for which the evidence was produced?

· What is the genre or category of evidence and what are the conventions shaping its production?

· How, where, and to whom was the evidence disseminated?

· How was the evidence preserved and transmitted to you?

· What possibilities and limitations do these factors place on how the evidence may be used?

If there is a source that you need that the library doesn’t have, talk to a librarian! They may be able to help you get access to a book via interlibrary loan or get you a photocopy of a journal article from another school.

If you have any questions about the completion of this assignment, please do not hesitate to contact me via email.

Study: Mourt’s Relation , written 1620-1 by Edward Winslow and William Bradford

This is an account of the early Plymouth colony, written by the above authors but previously and incorrectly attributed to George Mourt, who seems to have arranged for its publication. A good source for comparison with this is William Bradford’s On Plymouth Plantation, which can be accessed online through the library.


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