American Revolution

The Revolution will be Digitized!

A Joint Course offered at Loyola University Chicago and Shepherd University


When British colonists in North America declared themselves independent from the British Crown in 1776, they affected the most successful revolution in modern history. To this day, historians continue to try to make sense of their actions. In this hands-on, project-based course we will use digital tools and sources to conduct research on primary sources, analyze and interpret our findings, and communicate our results. Prof. Benjamin Bankhurst (Shepherd University) and Prof. Kyle Roberts (Loyola University Chicago) are team-teaching this course simultaneously allowing Shepherd and Loyola students to hear lectures, engage in discussions, and participate on group projects in this innovative digital history class.

The course moves chronologically and thematically through life and events in America from 1763 to 1815. We will explore the question of political mobilization, focusing on the period from the Stamp Act crisis in March 1765 through the declaration of American independence in July 1776. Text mining writings of the period will help us better appreciate the importance of the spoken and written word to revolutionary upheaval.  Digital mapping will help us explore on the ground a war that offered the promise of new opportunities for freedom, as well as the subsequent ways the creation of a new political order did not come easily.  Finally, we will turn to the consequences of the Revolution, at home and abroad, by digitally reconstructing the losses sustained by a few of the 100,000 Loyalists who fled the new United States.

Class sessions: Tuesdays and Thursdays, 5:15-6:30 EST | 4:15-5:30 PM CST

HIST 361 (Creation of the American Republic) Loyola University Chicago

HIST 302 (Era of American Revolution) Shepherd University