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ProQuest Historical Newspapers Newsletter contents:
  1. Historical Newspapers & ProQuest CSA Updates
  2. Classroom Activities
  3. CultureGrams in Focus
  4. Top 3 Websites
  5. Get Credit: Free Training Opportunities
  6. Call for User Testimonials
  7. Email Service Information

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     May 2007


Enclosed is this month's free newsletter for ProQuest® Historical Newspapers subscribers. This newsletter is designed to help teachers, librarians, and administrators stay informed about the latest changes to their subscriptions, while providing classroom resources and tips for using their ProQuest CSA solutions in a variety of settings.

Don't miss our online archive for access to past issues, and to make changes to your newsletter options.


Our product development team is constantly reviewing customer feedback and making changes to our learning resources to meet your needs. Several updates or content additions were recently completed, and we wanted to bring them to your attention.

ProQuest Civil War Era: Launched

ProQuest Civil War Era, a new digital resource that makes researching the American Civil War and its context more direct and complete than ever before, is now available from ProQuest CSA.

ProQuest Civil War Era is the first research solution to collect, digitize and combine in a single search platform the era's key newspapers and activist publications, creating a comprehensive view of not only the years of battle, but also the factors leading to war.
  • Why did territorial expansion fuel the slavery argument to the point of civil war?
  • Was there more to the Southern argument than just a defense of slavery?
  • What were the reasons for Northern aversion to the Lincoln administration?
  • Was Emancipation driven by great humanitarian impulses or the necessities of war?
More than just battles, ProQuest Civil War Era explores the key political and social viewpoints of the period as well.

Available on the ProQuest platform, ProQuest Civil War Era can be cross-searched with ProQuest Historical Newspapers and American Periodicals Series Online. For more information, preview the ProQuest Civil War Demo today.

"While a plethora of Civil War resources are available, ProQuest Civil War Era is the only one to digest coverage of both the 4-years of military battle and the 'war of words' that severed North from South into a truly comprehensive resource, said Barbara Beach, vice president of publishing for ProQuest CSA. "The content in this collection has been digitized material previously available only in print or film formats, fulfilling a growing need for primary source material related to the Civil War and its historical and societal context."

You can reach a ProQuest CSA representative at 1.800.521.0600 EXT. 3344, or via email to

Historical Newspapers Podcast: PDF Printing Tips & Tricks

ProQuest Historical Newspapers is a meticulously crafted, hand-picked primary-source collection covering the 25 fundamental topics of junior-high and high-school history curricula. Emphasizing ease of use and educational value, the Student Edition gives students an indispensable tool for studying U.S. history.

In this month’s podcast, we’ll show you how to print the sources you uncover in HNP -- or any ProQuest CSA solution offering PDF files. With just a few minutes of instruction, you’ll see how easy it is to output the items you need for your research. Let’s get started...

To view this month's video, subscribe to a ProQuest CSA podcast channel today. Plus, don’t miss our free monthly Web training sessions, which are eligible for CEU credit.

Newsletter Upgrades Ahead: August Relaunch

Over the past few months, our content and design teams have been working tirelessly to update our monthly newsletters. The result: all-new designs, new titles covering history and elementary topics, and more!

1. New, easier-to-read designs -- Next school year, all-new versions of our newsletters will arrive in your emailbox.

The new versions are designed to be a smaller, more concise, and easier to read, with clear links to “the full story.” That means much less searching, reading, and scrolling. We’ve also separated the solution-specific information from our generic content and other items to save you time.

2. Less email -- Each newsletter will only be sent 3-4 times during the year, instead of the current monthly cycle. Plus, SIRS ChallengeQuests and SIRS Spotlights will now be offered inside ProQuest Teachable Moments -- another step towards reducing the total number of messages you may receive.

3. New newsletters -- Interested in history or elementary-focused content?

Our new History Happenings and Explorations newsletters make it easy to tap into our history (Historical Newspapers, History Study Center, SIRS Decades, World Conflicts Today) and elementary-level solutions (eLibrary Elementary, SIRS Discoverer).

4. State-specific versions -- Instead of signing up for several newsletters that cover the two or more state-wide ProQuest CSA solutions you may currently receive, we’re offering a slate of state-specific newsletters that cover them all in a single message. This will also reduce the amount of emails you receive from us, while increasing the relevance and usability of each issue.

The state newsletters being developed currently cover Georgia, Virginia, Maryland, South Carolina, Pennsylvania, and Utah. More states will be added in the coming months based on how these initial offerings fare.

5. Fresh content and updates -- We’re also working hard to shake up our content offerings to ensure the usefulness and applicability of every article.

Don’t miss out! Connect to our newsletters subscription page and update your profile to add our fresh slate of newsletters which debut in August. To see the full list of newsletters and sign up someone who’s new to our newsletters, connect to this page.

Have a question, idea, or concern? Let us know by sending a message to today.

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How can business special interests impact the ethics of Congress?

May is Business Image Improvement Month. The Jack Abramoff (pictured right) scandal demonstrates how the coordinated power of special interests representing business can corrupt our legislators in Congress.

History teaches us that when power is concentrated too long in one party and their special interest groups, legislators create laws that benefit the special interest groups at the expense of all American citizens.

Ethics and character education are part of the new focus of responsibility being placed on the next generation of business leaders in colleges around the country. And the dramatic changes in Congress resulting from the 2006 elections indicate that the public has imposed its final verdict on the party in power, reducing it to the minority.

Activity: There have been other periods in American history that have produced equally infamous business and government scandals and calls for reform. It would certainly be interesting for students to study one of these historic eras of corruption and reform and compare and contrast those eras to the present.

Click the Topics tab and browse the following list of corruption and scandals in different eras:
  • Westward Expansion and Imperialism (c. 1865 - 1900) > Federal Policies Towards Native Americans
  • Industrial Age (c. 1880 - 1910) > Antitrust Movement
  • Progressive Era (c. 1880 - 1900) > Government Reforms
  • The Roaring '20s (c. 1920 - 1929) > Harding Administration
  • The Great Depression (c. 1928 - 1939) > Stock Market Crash
  • The Reagan and Bush Administrations (c. 1981 - 1993) > Savings and Loan Scandal
Assign students a different era and ask them to summarize the abuses and proposed reforms, and then compare those with the abuses and reforms proposed in the present.
  • How are the abuses similar?
  • How are the abuses different?
  • Is there any reform that seems to have had a lasting effect?
  • What reforms would you propose for today’s abuses of power?

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CultureGrams can help you broaden your students' understanding of the world and its peoples. The World Edition includes 190+ country profiles, written for junior high students and older. CultureGrams also has a Kids Edition, Provinces Edition, and a States Edition, geared for upper elementary students. These editions include kid-friendly profiles of 70+ countries, all 50 states (including Washington, D.C.), and the Canadian provinces.

CultureGrams goes beyond mere facts and figures to deliver an insider's perspective on daily life and culture, including the history, customs, and lifestyles of the world's people.

  • Capital: Rome
  • Population: 58,103,033 (rank=22)
  • Area, sq. mi.: 116,305 (rank=69)
  • Area, sq. km.: 301,230
  • Real GDP per capita: $27,119
  • Adult literacy rate: 99% (male); 99% (female)
  • Infant mortality rate: 4 per 1,000 births
  • Life expectancy: 77 (male); 83 (female)
Did You Know?
  • In Italy, pulling down the lower eyelid with a finger is a way of acknowledging someone's cleverness.
  • Italians refer to one another by their city of origin (Milanese, Roman, Florentine, etc.).
  • Nearly every city and town honors the local patron saint with an annual celebration.
There is increasing concern about the country's birthrate, one of the lowest in Europe, because Italy's population is expected to decline significantly in the coming decades. Around 67 percent of Italians live in urban areas. Rome is the capital and the largest city, with more than 2.5 million people. Most of the country's inhabitants are ethnic Italians, but there are small groups of ethnic Germans, French, and Slovenes, as well as Albanian-Italians and Greek-Italians. Although Italy historically has lost many citizens to emigration, the nation has experienced a large influx of immigrants in the last two decades.

Italian is the official language, although dialects differ from city to city. The Florentine and Roman dialects had a major influence on modern Italian. Most youths also speak English, the most common second language; older generations prefer to speak French. Significant French-, German-, and Slovene-speaking minorities exist. An ethnic minority in Tyrol speaks Ladin, a Romance language native to northern Italy.

General Attitudes
Adopting practices of their German and Austrian neighbors, people in the industrialized north traditionally value punctuality, reliability, organization, and economic success. They often are less relaxed and view time as a resource not to be wasted. They take pride in having a low tolerance for criminality and public corruption. Southerners are appreciated for their warm character and friendliness. They enjoy a leisurely life and take their time doing business. Family values prevail in the south and are often more appreciated than economic success.

Personal Appearance
Italians take pride in their appearance and tend to dress up for occasions as common as an evening stroll or a casual visit. Italians seldom wear dirty, worn, or sloppy clothing. Although attitudes vary among the younger generation, many people base their opinions of others on how they dress. In many cities, clothing and shoe shops are more plentiful than bakeries. Italy is a major center of the European fashion industry. Youths throughout the country follow the latest fashion trends, often wearing expensive, brand-name clothing.

To find out more about CultureGrams, connect to our website today.

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Each month, our SIRS® WebSelect and SIRS® Discoverer WebFind editorial teams scour the Internet for top-quality sites that help teachers teach and students learn. Although no Internet site can supplant a quality research database, these vetted resources offer unique resources that are sure to be of interest.
Sounds of China PodPage
Organization: ArtsEdge, The Kennedy Center

"In this audio series we explore unique aspects of Chinese music through sounds, performance and interviews. Users can listen online, download individual files, or subscribe to the Podcast....In this series, you will hear three episodes that each explores a different aspect of Chinese music--the endangered music of the Yunnan peoples; the traditional sounds of the pipa, bamboo flute, qin and other Chinese instruments; and the creative space between them, where sounds ancient and avant-garde intersect." (ARTSEDGE, THE KENNEDY CENTER)

Imperial Washington
Organization: American RadioWorks, American Public Media

"Members of Congress face many temptations, such as special interests who want to them on free trips golfing or fishing, to Bermuda or Wimbledon. But voters are demanding reform. Here, we look at how the perks lawmakers enjoy make it tough to clean up government, and what happens when newcomers try to play the lobbying game." (AMERICAN RADIOWORKS, AMERICAN PUBLIC MEDIA)

When Things Get Small
Organization: UCSD-TV

"What could a stadium-sized bowl of peanuts, a shrinking elephant, and a crazed hockey player have to do with nanoscience? Those are just some of the goofy excursions that await you when witty host Adam Smith and wacky physicist Ivan Schuller take you on an irreverent, madcap, comically corny romp into the real-life quest to create the smallest magnet ever known." (UCSD-TV)

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Our product trainers are standing by to help you get the most out of your subscription -- and learn more about our other digital learning resources! We offer a wide variety of online training sessions each month.

Plus, all attendees can easily obtain a Certificate of Attendance (right) for any of our online courses! The certificate documents the course name, amount of class time, date, and verifies attendance. You can use the certificate to document attendance in the class and submit it along with the additional documentation your school district requires for continuing education credits.

Be sure to tell your trainer that you would like to receive a certificate via email at the start of each class. They’ll be glad to help!

You can download three ready-to-print versions of forthcoming training dates and times in PDF format. Our training sessions cover after-school hours within several time zones. Best of all, there's no cost to participate. All you need is a computer with Internet access, a phone, and one hour.

Register for a Historical Newspapers or additional ProQuest CSA solution course today.

You may also sign up for a timely enewsletter to receive training dates each month via email as soon as they're available.

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“My teachers, students and I continue to be very pleased with our ProQuest database. One of the best search results I've had in the last year is a student in a biology class that was researching avian flu around the world."

"Each pair of students had a particular country to investigate. The example I use when explaining to parents, school board members, legislators and others how useful this tool is, is the students whose country was Romania. I always show the students how to use the advanced search screen, telling them what a sophisticated search strategy they're learning. These students put in Avian flu and Romania, connecting their terms with AND. They got 12 results, all of them trustworthy, reliable, etc. Number one on the list was a story less than 24 hours old from the BBC. Such a source would never have been available in the days of Readers' Guide!”

Ellie Goldstein-Erickson
Library Media Teacher
Berkeley High School Library
What features of your ProQuest CSA solutions do you and your students find the most useful? Have you recently used or are planning to use Historical Newspapers as part of an assignment or student research project? How do you and other curriculum leaders in your institution use your ProQuest CSA educational resources?

Share your experiences with peers working in schools across the country and around the world--through an upcoming Product News Bulletin! We're waiting to hear from you. Please send your ideas and stories to:

If we choose your submission, we'll contact you for additional information and permission to use your story in a future issue.

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Increase the usage of your digital learning resources! Our forward-to-a-friend service makes it easy to instantly send this product bulletin -- and all the great ideas and information it contains -- to others in your subscribing institution with a click of your mouse.

Also, be sure to encourage them to sign up for our SIRS, CultureGrams, ProQuest, ProQuest Historical Newspapers, eLibrary, eLibrary Curriculum Edition, and additional enewsletters as appropriate.

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ProQuest offers a growing family of K-12 classroom-focused, subscription-based online research tools. Many of these education solutions offer reading level-linked (lexile) content, support 21st-century information literacy skills, and help schools differentiate instruction across all curriculum areas.

Learn more about all of our tools here, tap into our training resources and videos, and don't miss our new eLibrary research tool (more). We also have a pair of special resource pages just for teachers (with lesson plans) and librarians.


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