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Lesson Plans - Trade: Salem in the East Indies

NAME OF LESSON: Trade: Salem in the East Indies
GRADE(S) DESIGNED FOR: 8
TIME REQUIRED: 2-3 class periods

NAME OF AUTHOR:

Beth Beaulieu
PRIMARY SALEM in History CORE THEME ADDRESSED: Salem as Place: Local History in a National Context
ADDITIONAL SALEM in History CORE THEME(S) ADDRESSED:

The United States in the World: American Foreign Relations

An Industrious People: American Economic History

SALEM in History Topic Addressed: "Salem in the World, The World in Salem: Salem in the Early Republic and the East Indies Trade"

Lesson Summary | Frameworks | Essential Question(s) | Lesson Objectives
Historical Background Essay | Materials List and Pre-Arrangements/Preparations Needed
Vocabulary | Lesson Activities | Student Product or Performance
Assessment Criteria | Possible Modifications | Possible Extension Activities
Cross Curricular/Interdisciplinary Links/Activities | Sources and Resources
Additional Resources for Students and Teachers


LESSON SUMMARY:

Salem, Massachusetts' maritime history was critical to the economic, political and social development of the United States during the period of the New Republic. Unfortunately texts used by schoolchildren do not adequately discuss how seaports like Salem contributed to the establishment of the new nation. Seaports provided opportunity for the new national government to gain tax revenue through customs houses at each of the ports. The flow of money from ports like Salem's was critical in establishing a viable new nation. This economic development and the evolution of an American national identity come together in the early 1800's when Salem's East Indies trade is at its height. In this lesson students will consider the following three Essential Questions: What allowed Salem to prosper in the years of the early republic? What did trade, specifically in the East Indies, do for the nation and the people of this city? What can images of a place, like Salem, tell us about the people's lives and what they valued in that place at a particular point in time? The objective of this lesson is for students to understand the paramount role trade had in Salem's status and growth in the Early Republic and what the possible consequences of the impending embargo of 1807 and War of 1812 will have on trade. Secondly students will analyze images in order to determine what images might tell the viewers historically about the people who lived in Salem between 1780 and 1830. Students will look at two primary source images, an engraving of Derby Wharf depicting a 1797 scene and the city seal of Salem, and read one or more secondary sources to achieve these objectives. Students will demonstrate their understanding through a directed writing assignment and by creating and justifying their own city seals for Salem in 2004.

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CORRELATION WITH 2003 MASSACHUSETTS HISTORY AND SOCIAL STUDIES CURRICULUM FRAMEWORK

MA FRAMEWORK STRAND: Grade 8

MA FRAMEWORK UNIT/THEME ADDRESSED:
1) The Formation and Framework of American Democracy
2) Economic Growth in the North and the South, 1800-1860

MA FRAMEWORK LEARNING STANDARD(S) ADDRESSED:
USI.16 Describe the evolution of the role of the federal government, including public services, taxation, economic policy, foreign policy, and common defense.
USI.27 Explain the importance of the transportation revolution of the 19th century (the building of canals, roads, bridges, turnpikes, steamboats, and railroads), including the stimulus it provided to the growth of the market economy.

MA FRAMEWORK CONCEPT AND SKILLS STANDARD(S) ADDRESSED:
GRADE(S) AND SUBJECT(S): Grade 8 History
NUMBER(S) AND DESCRIPTION(S):
Students should be able to apply concepts and skills learned in previous grades.
3. Interpret and construct timelines that show how events and eras in various parts of the world are related to one another.
5. Explain how cause and effect relationship is different from a sequence or correlation of events.
7. Show connections, causal and otherwise, between particular historical events and ideas and large social, economic, and political trends and developments.

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ESSENTIAL QUESTION(S):

What allowed Salem to prosper in the years of the early republic? What did trade, specifically in the East Indies, do for the nation and the people of this city? What can images of a place, like Salem, tell us about the people's lives and what they valued in that place?

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LESSON OBJECTIVES

LEARNING/CONTENT OBJECTIVES:
o Students will understand and be able to explain the economic development of the new republic and Salem's participation in it in the late 1700's, and its decline following the War of 1812.
o Students will be able to explain Salem's role in the East Indies Trade.
o Students will be able to tell how the people of Salem communicated that the East Indies trade was an important aspect of their community.

CONCEPT/SKILLS OBJECTIVES:
o Students will be able to observe and analyze an image for historical and social significance.
o Interpret and construct timelines that show how events and eras in various parts of the world are related to one another.
o Explain how cause and effect relationship is different from a sequence or correlation of events.
o Show connections, causal and otherwise, between particular historical events and ideas and large social, economic, and political trends and developments.
o Observe and interpret sources such as primary documents, historic paintings, illustrations, objects and artifacts.

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HISTORICAL BACKGROUND ESSAY:

The importance of Salem and other port cities in the emerging United States cannot be underestimated. During the critical transition between the Articles of Confederation and the establishment of the new republic under the Constitution of the United States, economic growth was at the heart of creating a stable nation. Port cities, including Salem, assisted in maintaining some stability for merchants and producers in the economy but also assisted in establishing a flow of tax revenue to the nation through customs houses. Therefore in discussion of the development of the new nation, Salem's maritime history and contributions must be included.

Due to its location, Salem was naturally well-positioned to participate in Atlantic, and later, Asian trade. Following the American Revolution, Salem prospered in ways that other parts of the new Confederation of States did not.1 Salem and its ship owners had profited during the war by using their ships as privateers. This income helped to maintain the fleet, and therefore they were more prepared to recover after the war. Political relations with Britain had also changed, and as a result trade would need to change. One Salem ship owner, Elias Hasket Derby, recognized this need to change and joined several other American ship owners in looking toward the east.2 In 1786 Derby's first ship began trading at Canton and Salem ship owners would continue to be at the forefront of the East Indies trade until 1807 when the President Thomas Jefferson enacted the Embargo of 1807.

Goods that were brought into the city from around the globe were purchased by Salemites and shaped their worldview. So too did first person accounts which were a part of the culture of Salem during the years of the early republic. People from Salem had a presence in cities in Asia.4 Traveling Salem residents kept logs and journals of their lengthy trips that were sometimes shared with family and friends at home.5These shared experiences of travel and international goods showed Salem to the nation as worldly city in the Early Republic.

But Salem was not destined to remain a world power in the area of trade for long. As a consequence of the embargo and the War of 1812, the city's fleet of ocean going ships was drastically cut and trade suffered. Concurrently cities like Boston and New York grew as centers of trade because of superior ports, and Gloucester and New Bedford had become the centers of fishing for New England. By the 1830's Salem was in decline; it was no longer the most important international seaport, and the transportation revolution in the areas of canals and railroads had supplanted Salem's role in domestic trade. This was a time of transition for the city and the nation.

In 1836 Salem was granted the designation as a city, which prompted the development of a city seal. The seal harkened back to the height of Salem's East Indies trade between 1786 and 1806. The seal included a motto, "To the Farthest Ports of the Richest East" and several symbols to represent its history in the East Indies trade, a square rigged ship and a Sumatran man on a beach. The national economy in 1830's was changing and becoming more industrial. The city seal was celebrating Salem's economic prominence at a time when Salem's fortunes were decreasing and a new industrial age was beginning in Salem as well.

1Robert Booth, "Salem as Enterprise Zone," Salem: Place, Myth and Memory, eds. Dane Morrison and Nancy Schultz (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2004) 64.
2Booth 72-75.
3 Dane Morrison, "Salem as Citizen of the World," Salem: Place, Myth and Memory, eds. Dane Morrison and Nancy Schultz (Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2004) 111.
4 Dorothy Shurman Hawes, To the Farthest Gulf: The Story of the American China Trade (Ipswich, MA: Ipswich Press, 1990) introduction.

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MATERIALS LIST AND PRE-ARRANGEMENTS/PREPARATION NEEDED

MATERIALS LIST:
1. Miller, Brandon Marie, "Salem and the East Indies" Cobblestone Magazine (September 1988): 6-9. (one class set)
2. Stewart, Doug, "Salem Sets Sail" Smithsonian (June 2004): 92-99. (one class set)
3. Certificate. Salem Marine Society Certificate for John B. Knight, 31 Jan 1839. Phillips Library. Peabody Essex Museum. (one class set)
4. Seal. City seal of Salem, Massachusetts, March 1839. (one class set)
5. Primary Source Analysis activity sheet (two for each student)
6. Essential question writing assignment and rubric (one class set)
*7. City Seal Creation Challenge
*8. Timeliner 5.0 by Tom Synder Productions
* optional extension activities materials

PREPARATION:
1. pre-teach vocabulary
2. pre-teach creation of a timeline
3. pre-teach background on the New Republic i.e. economic challenges after the revolution, impressment of mariners, trade difficulties with England in the West Indies, etc.

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VOCABULARY:

commerce
privateer
blockade
prosperity
commercial
cargo
wharf
neutral
embargo
economy
political
social
vessel
Yankee
Revenue


LESSON ACTIVITIES:


Lesson 1

The first lesson asks the students to view the Marine Society Certificate engraving of Salem in 1797. The objective will be for the students to observe the elements of this maritime image of Salem. The students will first use the Image-Primary Source Analysis sheet to analyze the engraving. The class will discuss their observations; the teacher will guide this discussion using the following set of guiding questions.

Goal: The goal is for students to identify symbols and examples of trade in an engraving from Salem made in 1797 at the height of Salem's maritime prominence.

Observation:
1. What do you notice in the engraving?
2. What is the seascape like?
3. What are the buildings like, and where are they?
4. What are people doing in the engraving?

Contextualization/Interpretation:
1. Where do you think it is this from?
2. When do you think it was made?
3. What does the number of ships tell you about the place?
4. What do the buildings on the wharf tell you?
5. Why do you think this was created? For what purpose?
6. What is its message, or what is it trying to communicate?
7. Who might be the audience?

Argument:
1. What does this source tell us about what was happening in Salem economically and socially in the late 1700s and early 1800s?


Lesson 2

The next lesson can be done as homework or a class activity. Its purpose is to provide historical context for the Maritime Society engraving the students looked at in the first lesson and additional content for further primary source interpretation in the third lesson.

Students will read the article, "Salem and the East Indies," by Brandon Marie Miller from Cobblestone Magazine and/or "Salem Sets Sail," by Doug Stewart from Smithsonian magazine pages 96-98. Students will create a timeline from the reading to illustrate the events occurring that could and did effect Salem and how Salem had an impact on the developing nation as a result of its role in trade in Asia. Specifically students should pay close attention to Salem's period of shipping superiority and its decline after the War of 1812. This content is critical to the following lesson.

If this activity is done at school the teacher can choose to have the students utilize the program TimeLiner 5.0 by Tom Synder Productions. Students can then be provided with web sites or search strategies to locate images, which correlate with the captions they have written.


Lesson 3:

In a study of the significance of the East Indies trade to Salem, the city seal is an artifact that effectively illustrates the maritime history as well as the East Indies trade specifically. The seal's motto, "To the Farthest Port of the Richest East" provides textual information for students, and the images within the seal of a square rigged ship and a Atjehnese man from Sumatra provide visual information. The teacher should also have students reflect back on their timelines and readings to remember when Salem began its decline. At the time of the creation of the seal Salem was no longer prominent in shipping. The teacher should guide students to discussion why this seal would have been created as it was in 1836.

In pairs students will use the Image - Primary Source Activity sheet to make observations, ask questions, try to make historic connections and then ask any further questions. Students will be guided through whole class discussion to notice the various images, text and dates presented. The teacher will lead the students through the following series of questions in order to help them to draw some inferences, and make some arguments from the image.

Observation:
1. What do you notice in the seal?
2. What are the objects in the seal?
3. What are the words and dates in the seal?
4. Where is this from?
5. When was it made?

Contextualization/Interpretation:
1. What might the images represent? The bird? The man? The ship? The land and water?
2. Why is there an Asian man in the picture? Why palm trees?
3. Does anyone have any guesses about the text?
4. Why might have this been created? For what purpose? Why was it created in 1836?
5. Who is the audience?

Argument:
1. What is its message or what is it trying to communicate?
2. What does this source tell us about what was happening in Salem economically and socially in the late 1700s and early 1800s or about changes over that time period?

As a class, the students will then read the seal's description from the City of Salem web site. http://www.salemcouncil.com/City%20Seal.htm . To wrap up the lesson students will reflect on the seal and the reading they did to answer the following question in a well-developed paragraph.

Does Salem's seal reflect what the city was like in 1836? What does it represent? What do the symbols and words say about Salem in 1836?

The next step will be for the students to connect the two images, the engraving and the seal. How do these two images relate to each other? Students will be challenged to find at least 3 ways these two images could be connected based on what they see in the images and what they read in the article. Students will hopefully see the ship/s in both, that both are related to Salem, that Derby Wharf had a connection to Elias Hasket Derby, the ship owner and trader, that 1836 represented a time of change economically and socially in Salem, and of course the idea of ships going to sea - to trade.

Following the analysis of the Marine Society Certificate and the city seal the Marine Society Certificate, students will be asked to review their notes on what was included in each image and the way each element was included. Students will be given a direction sheet for an essay that will require each student to demonstrate understanding of the Essential Question and the historical evidence provided by the primary sources. Students will be asked to summarize the historical period of the late 1700s and early 1800s in Salem and then provide detailed evidence of how that history can be observed and interpreted from these two images.

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STUDENT PRODUCT or PERFORMANCE:

Following the analysis of the Marine Society Certificate and the Salem city seal, students will be asked to review their notes on what was included in each image and the way each element was included. Students will be given a direction sheet for an essay that will require each student to demonstrate understanding of the Essential Question and the historical evidence provided by the primary sources. Students will be asked to summarize the historical period of the late 1700's and early 1800's in Salem and then provide detailed evidence of how that history can be observed and interpreted from these two images.

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ASSESSMENT CRITERIA:

  • Students will be assessed on their two Image Analysis Sheets.
  • Students will be assessed on their timelines - historical accuracy and connection to Salem's history
  • Students will be assessed on their essay with a rubric.

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POSSIBLE MODIFICATIONS:

o Paired reading
o Students with significant reading difficulty will have the reading highlighted
o Computer technology is available for all writing activities

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POSSIBLE EXTENSION ACTIVITIES:

1. The students' task will be to create a seal for the city today. Students will look at images of Salem today from the newspaper, brochures, and books on the city. Each student's seal will need text, at least one date, and 3 or more images or symbols. Student can do hand drawing, collage or computer imaging to create their seal. A written justification for the seal will be provided by each student below the seal. Web sites of several city seals will be provided to the students as examples of the types of justification given for different symbols.

2. Additional research into the Salem Marine Society and the Essex Institute might provide students with opportunities to use the Peabody Essex Museum to locate their own examples of the East Indies trade in the art and artifacts located there. From this exploration, students can try to research the object, artist or creator and provide a justification for how this object might relate to the East Indies trade in Salem.

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CROSS CURRICULAR/INTERDISCIPLINARY LINKS/ACTIVITIES:

This lesson lends itself to connections within art, language arts, and technology education.

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SOURCES AND RESOURCES

PRIMARY SOURCES USED IN LESSON:

Certificate. Salem Marine Society Certificate for John B. Knight, 31 Jan 1839. Philips Library. Peabody Essex Museum, Salem, MA.

This image of the Derby Wharf and Stage Fort Point area of Salem includes not only the wharf and geographic features of Salem Harbor but also action. Ships are coming into and leaving port, people are rowing boats and walking on the shoreline, flags are flying. This image is thought to be Derby Wharf in 1797. This was the height of Salem's East Indies trade and therefore provides a good reference point for students.

Seal of the City of Los Angeles. Accessed July 19, 2004. http://www.lacity.org/clk/cps/cityseals.pdf

This seal includes symbols of the various nations, that ruled the area over the last 450 years as well as its connection to the United States. Political, economic and religious symbols predominate. The long history of the city/settlement is notable. The lack of Native American images also might be notable for students.

Motta, Arthur P. Jr., City of New Bedford Office of Tourism and Marketing. Accessed July 19, 2004.
http://www.ci.new-bedford.ma.us/TOURISM/NewTourism/citysealhistory.asp

The maritime history of New Bedford, Massachusetts makes the city seal of this city a valuable comparison to Salem's seal. The accompanying web site provides a detailed historical context for the seal's symbols and the city's motto. As is the case with the Salem seal, this seal provides social as well as economic images and context.

Seal. City seal of Salem, Massachusetts, March 1839.
(This resource can be located in many places around the city: the firehouse, city hall, the police station. Reproductions can be found on the title page of Salem, Place, Myth, Memory, and in Cobblestone, September 1988.)

Salem's city seal was created to mark the designation of Salem as a city in 1836. The seal itself represents the city at the height of the East Indies trade from the 1790's to the early 1800's. By the time Salem became a city, it had declined in prominence as a shipping and trading port and had begun to enter its more industrial era. The seal therefore harkens back to an earlier time of economic and social strength. The motto and images speak specially about the East Indies trade.

SECONDARY (PRINT) SOURCES USED IN LESSON:

Miller, Brandon Marie, "Salem and the East Indies" Cobblestone Magazine (September 1988): 6-9.

Salem's trading history is described in this article including the following aspects which all have connection to the development of trade: privateering, economics of trade, embargos, and the War of 1812. This article is easily accessed by most middle school students and is written at a 6th grade reading level. For more advanced readers, provide students with the article by Doug Stewart, "Salem Sets Sail".

Stewart, Doug, "Salem Sets Sail" Smithsonian (June 2004): 92-99.

The initial focus of this article is on the expansion of the Peabody Essex Museum. However pages 96 - 98 include an overview of Salem's importance to trade in the east.

SECONDARY SOURCES USED TO CREATE LESSON:

1. Booth, Robert. "Salem as Enterprise Zone," in Dane Morrison and Nancy Schultz, eds.,Salem: Place, Myth and Memory. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2004, 63-89.
This chapter of Salem: Place, Myth and Memory provides a thorough description of the economic reality of Salem after the Revolutionary War. It also explains some of the cultural opportunities and activities Salemites participated in because of the relative wealth of the area.

2. Hawes, Dorothy Shurman. To the Farthest Gulf: The Story of the American China Trade.
Ipswich, MA: Ipswich Press, 1990.

Hawes provides both the American and Chinese historical context for trade. She also discusses some of the prominent Salem personalities who provided evidence and description through their journals and ships' records of the China trade.

3. McKenzie, Matthew. "Salem as Athenaeum," in Dane Morrison and Nancy Schultz, eds., Salem: Place, Myth and Memory. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2004, 91-105.

The intellectual pursuits of Salem residents in the years 1760 to 1812 are discussed and connected to why Salem becomes a leader in trade and shipping.

4. Morrison, Dane. "Salem as Citizen of the World," in Dane Morrison and Nancy Schultz, eds., Salem: Place, Myth and Memory. Boston: Northeastern University Press, 2004, 107-127.

This chapter of Salem: Place, Myth and Memory looks at the world view of Salem residents and how international trade expanded and what it meant to be a Salemite in the late 1700's to the early 1800's.

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ADDITIONAL RESOURCES FOR TEACHERS AND/OR STUDENTS

 

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