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The DBQ Project: Democracy in America, 1815-1865: Home

Dr. Combest

Contact a Librarian

Feel free to contact a librarian for research or citation assistance. We are generally available in our offices for drop in help or scheduled appointments throughout the academic day.

Liesel Good
Office: CFL, Main Level

Karen McCarthy
Office: CFL, Main Level

Heather McCulley
Office: CFL, Upper Level

Pamela Nye
Office: CFL, Upper Level


Monday through Thursday
8:00 am - 4:30 pm

 & Friday
8:00 am - 3:00

Closed weekends and school holidays

Hours subject to change in accordance with the school calendar

Summer Hours


Monday through Friday

9:30 am - 1:30 pm

Project Description

You will work with a group to create your own AP-style document-based essay question.  The historical essay question will focus on a particular topic in the 1815-1865 time rangeand will come with several (8-10) snippets of primary sources as evidence to be used.  You should include a variety of letters, government documents, journals and diaries, political cartoons, maps, laws, newspaper articles, speeches, etc.  In the early stages of your research you will investigate topics, issues, and potential questions by doing background "discovery" research outside of the textbook.  Once you settle on an issue/question, you need to start finding and interpreting primary source documents, going back to your historical research as needed.

This Research Guide should connect you to resources for the historical research, as well as to primary documents to use in your essay question.  Do not hesitate to consult with Dr. Combest or a librarian should you need help along the way.

Map of US in 1840

1840 Map of the United States

The map of the United States shown below displays the boundaries for each of the states that existed in year 1840 according to the United States Geological Survey Bulletin 1212.

Red= Manmade boundary        Black=Disputed boundary