US History Primary Source Analysis: Crevecoeur's "What is an American?"

Rated 4.8 out of 5, based on 10 reviews
10 Ratings
Students of History
Grade Levels
7th - 10th
Resource Type
Formats Included
  • PDF
  • Google Apps™
4 pages
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Students of History
Includes Google Apps™
The Teacher-Author indicated this resource includes assets from Google Workspace (e.g. docs, slides, etc.).


This primary source letter from Hector St. Jean de Crevecoeur beautifully describes what it means to be an American - in 1782! It is a perfect worksheet to use in your Early US History unit.

Crevecoeur was a French immigrant to America and vividly describes early American life, including what made Americans unique compared to the European cultures he experienced.

This download features a 1-page excerpt from his much longer letter, so that your students can focus on his most important points on America in 1782. And you get both printable and Google Drive versions in one download!

Following the reading is a set of open-ended analysis questions to get your students to think critically about Crevecoeur's fantastic letter. An answer key for this is included for your convenience.

The Google Docs version is great for paperless classrooms as students can type their responses directly onto the answer sheet. The printable PDF is the same worksheet but ready to print and use in your class. Both versions are included here!

If you like this, you can also find many more great Primary Source activities here!

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Total Pages
4 pages
Answer Key
Teaching Duration
30 minutes
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to see state-specific standards (only available in the US).
Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.
Determine the central ideas or information of a primary or secondary source; provide an accurate summary of the source distinct from prior knowledge or opinions.
Identify key steps in a text’s description of a process related to history/social studies (e.g., how a bill becomes law, how interest rates are raised or lowered).


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