Every house holds clues to its history. On this page, students will find some of the methods historians and curators used to learn about the house at 16 Elm Street in Ipswich, Massachusetts. The house is the focus of Within These Walls , an online exhibition from the Smithsonian's National Museum of American History. Students will learn how to use primary source documents, photographs and architectural clues to answer questions such as: Who lived in a house and what the neighborhood was like? When was the house built? How do historians discover how a house changes over time? Also included is a link to House Detective: Finding History in Your Home , an research guide that will help students conduct investigations of their own home.


  • Language Arts > General
  • Social Studies > General

Education Levels:

  • Grade 4
  • Grade 5
  • Grade 6
  • Grade 7
  • Grade 8
  • Grade 9
  • Grade 10
  • Grade 11
  • Grade 12


4 to 12 | Flash



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Public - Available to anyone

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Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial


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