In this project, you will trace and analyze the major and minor inventions made by Americans over the period 1873-2004 to understand how these inventions contributed to America's rise as a military-industrial power. You will see that items we take for granted in our everyday lives have a history of development. As a historian, your goal is to understand these inventions in the historical context in which they were created.

Through studying an American invention and tracing it through history, you will gain a better understanding of the role of the United States as a world center for innovation, advancement and power.

State Standards

This project meets the following California State Content Standards in History and Social Science:

Students trace the rise of the United States to its role as a world power in the twentieth century.

HSS.11.4.5 Analyze the political, economic and social ramifications of World War I on the home front.

Students analyze the major political, social, economic, technological, and cultural developments of the 1920s.

HSS. 11.5.6 Trace the growth and effects of radio and movies and their role in the worldwide diffusion of popular culture.

HSS 11.5.7 Discuss the rise of mass production techniques, the growth of cities, the impact of new technologies (e.g., the automobile, electricity), and the resulting prosperity and effect on the American landscape.

Students analyze America

HSS 11.7.6 Students describe major developments in aviation, weaponry, communication, and medicine and the war's impact on the location of American industry and the use of resources.

Students analyze the economic boom and social transformation of post-World War II America.

HSS 11.8.7 Students describe the effects on society and the economy of technological developments since 1945, including the computer revolution, changes in communication, advances in medicine, and improvements in agricultural technology.

This project meets the following Technology/Information Literacy Standards:

1. The student who is information literate accesses information efficiently and effectively.

2. The student who is information literate evaluates information critically and competently.

3. The student who is information literate uses information critically and competently.

This project meets the following 11th grade English Language Content Standards for Writing:

Research and Technology

1.6 Develop presentations by using clear research questions and creative and critical research strategies (e.g., field studies, oral histories, interviews, experiments, electronic sources).

1.7 Use systematic strategies to organize and record information (e.g., anecdotal scripting, annotated bibliographies).

1.8 Integrate databases, graphics, and spreadsheets into word-processed documents.

2.4 Write historical investigation reports:

a. Use exposition, narration, description, argumentation, exposition, or some combination of rhetorical strategies to support the main proposition.
b. Analyze several historical records of a single event, examining critical relationships between elements of the research topic.
c. Explain the perceived reason or reasons for the similarities and differences in historical records with information derived from primary and secondary sources to support or enhance the presentation.
d. Include information from all relevant perspectives and take into consideration the validity and reliability of sources.
e. Include a formal bibliography.