The Social and Intellectual Legacy of the American Revolution

“We can see with other eyes; we hear with other ears; and think with other thoughts, than those we formerly used. We are now really another people, and cannot again go back to ignorance and prejudice. The mind once enlightened cannot again become dark.” This is how Tom Paine, the consummate pamphleteer of the American Revolutionary cause, reflected on how the long war with Great Britain pushed Americans into a concurrent search for a new and durable society based on ideas of liberty & equality.

  • Resource Type: Essays, Primary Sources
  • Subject: Rights and Responsibilities
  • Grades: 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Emancipation of Slaves Under the Constitution

This short video illustrates the approaches taken by the various states towards freeing their slaves. Pennsylvania and New York were among the first to provide a path to gradual emancipation, due in large part to the influence of Quakers and Methodists. Professor John Kaminiski discusses the various criteria for manumission: the age of the individual; what percentage of the individual’s racial background was African-American; and how well prepared the individual was for life as a freeman.

  • Resource Type: Video
  • Subject: Rights and Responsibilities
  • Grades: 10, 11, 12