Extra Credit #2
In my AMH2010 class this semester with Professor Dr. Soldani, we were assigned what was called case study files. Case study files are different file variations on people such as census data, former slaves, criminal files, death records and etc. that was already carefully picked out with starting information. We were allowed to pick the type of case file we wanted to conduct our research on. Dr. Soldani gave us almost a month to find our information on the case file we individually chose and she informed us that the research would be posted on her blog to show former and new students the information we found. TCC Librarians came to our class and provided our class with the information and technology that was available on campus to help us aide in our research. On the first case study assignment, I chose a slave file by the name of Caesar. I chose a slave because I was interested in former slaves I wanted to know more of what I already knew about slaves. I wanted to know the living conditions of the slave, what city and state was the slave in and more personal information of the slave. The slave I had was a freed slave and there wasn’t really much information on him that I could find so after about spending a week on that particular file I switched case files. My second case file was a criminal case file and that was very interesting. I spent about a week on ancestry.com/ newspapaers.com looking into the criminal that I had. And my last case file was also a criminal because the information is a little bit easier to find when searching for who what when where and how`s.
In my researches, for the first criminal case file I chose, which was the freed slave, I found out he was from Orleans, Louisiana and had been bought out through self-purchase and was freed. The next case file which is the one I switched to after no luck on the slave was the criminal file. The criminal in that case was a lady named Eleanor Hansen. Her case file led me to ancestry.com Thanks to Dr. Soldani ancestry login information, which was provided to us by her, I started searching through family trees and court records. I never looked through family trees so that was interesting in itself. Searching through family trees told me the criminal birth date and birth place and parents. I then logged onto www.newspapers.com and discovered an entire article about the actual crime. The crime was Eleanor Hansen husband was ordered to pay $10 a month for child support but the husband had not been paying. Eleanor Hansen went to her husband house fired two fatal shots into the chest of her husband because she stated her and her daughter was hungry and they hadn’t had any food to eat for four days. That case was very intriguing and sad because the daughter lost both parents one to prison and the other due to violence. Consequently Eleanor Hansen was committed to San Quentin Prison for 5 years to life. Prior to the newspaper article, I actually called the San Quentin Prison to see about prison records but by the time era being so far back they did instruct me to try a museum. My final case study was also done on a criminal and her name was Maragret Irving. Maragret Irving was a colored female who shot and killed a white army veteran and claimed self-defense but the lack of evidence did not support her claim. With this particular case I confined my research strictly to ancestry.com and newspaper.com All of these case files and investigations allowed me to play detective and travel back in time to see some of the history and things that actually did happen way before I was even conceived. Without these case file investigation, I wouldn’t known a slave could buy themselves out and be set free, I would not have known it was not uncommon for there to be more women murders than men back in those times. A lot of the cases are very similar to what happens now day to day especially with all of the shootings that are happening in today’s society now. The information on ancestry is really more than just a website with words, the words in ancestry tells millions of stories. Without the push from the case files, I would have never thought to ever login into ancestry.com. Case files do take a fair amount of time luckily I was able to locate information within a few weeks into my research. At the end of the case file was a peer review. The peer review allowed us as students to see the success others found while completing their research. We was assigned 5 of our student peers research papers to read and grade based off a grading rubric. Everybody research journey that I read was almost similar as far as type of case files, some had more luck than others and some just simply didn’t put in any effort. Some peer reviews allowed me to go back and try different research techniques that I didn’t utilize such as going into the library in which I did not have to do this time but can possibly do next time. Overall, the need for advanced research and analytical skills is crucial in today’s society because without it what would we know. The hands on part of data research is what is truly intriguing. Without data there is no research, without research there is no history, which means I wouldn’t been able to type this essay without the facts that I researched thanks to the case file assignments and peer reviews. Sitting in class just looking at power points or reading word for word through a textbook would be boring. We have to make the most out of history and with today’s technologies that are openly available to us, we can take advantage of the information out there and put it to use. This class was formed off of Blooms Taxonomy, create, evaluate, analyze, apply, understand, and remember, that is what is needed in everyday life because remember without data there is no story without a story there is no history.