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[Detail] Illustration of the shield of Virginia, from the eighteenth century

Historical Research: Using Photographs to Develop Research Questions

Historical research begins with questions, but formulating good historical questions often does not come easily. Print out the pictures from "Photographic Views and Description of the Great Baltimore Fire." Examine the photos and generate two lists: (1) things we can determine from the photos and (2) questions we have about what is shown in the photographs. From this analysis, develop a list of research questions about the fire. Search The Capital and the Bay for answers to the questions generated. Pool the results of your work and determine what questions remain unanswered. Develop a strategy for finding answers to the remaining questions.