Live Tweeting An Historical Event

Reflection:

This was a simultaneously fun and highly informational project. We were asked to choose an historical event and individually tweet about the event, either from that time period pretending twitter existed back then, or to tweet like the event was happening present day. I chose to tweet about Christopher Columbus’s journey to the New World, as if it was taking place during modern day.

This project was a lot of fun, especially because we were allowed to use any hashtags we wanted, which allowed me to put a comedic twist on the whole thing. I didn’t expect to learn as much as I did from this project. I figured that I would spend about an hour researching the timeline of his journey and then spend about an hour tweeting about it, and boy was I wrong. It was very difficult to find scholarly sources that included a dated timeline of the events. After an hour or two of research I finally stumbled across an annotated bibliography of all Christopher Columbus related material. I used that to my advantage and found three solid sources that included timelines. The next difficulty I faced was that most of the timelines, until the moment he left for his voyage, did not use specific dates when describing the difficulties he had to overcome before setting sail. Most of the sources were very detailed once Columbus actual set sail, but before then they used general dates instead of specific days, which left me with a lot of gaps in the timeline.

I tweet from the perspective of Christopher Columbus himself, as if he was making his journey present day and using twitter to cataloug the events instead of a journal. I also was originally going to focus more on Columbus’s actual interactions with the Taino people, but decided going back and forth between two twitters (one for Columbus and one for the Taino people) would be to difficult to organize.

Like I stated previously, I really did not expect to learn as much as I did. To tweet efficiently about an event you really have to know everything there is to know about it. If you want to be satirical, or use any type of creativity you have to know the event inside and out before you try to put your own type of twist on it. I learned a great deal about Christopher Columbus and his journey, but most his journey before he set sail.

I decided to pick this specific topic mostly because I knew it was very well researched and something everyone knew a little about. It also helped that when I looked up the date this project was due, I noticed it was a couple days after columbus day on the calendar.

 

The sources I used were:

 

FordHam University. Medieval Sourcebook: Christopher Columbus: Extracts from Journal. http://www.fordham.edu/halsall/source/columbus1.asp (accessed October 15, 2014).

 

McNeese, Tim, and William H. Goetzmann. Christopher Columbus and the Discovery of the Americas, Explorers of New Lands. New York, New York: Chelsea House Publishers, 2006.

 

Pelta, Kathy. Discovering Christopher Columbus: How History is Invented. Minneapolis, Minnesota: Lerner Publications Company, 1991.

 

Where I organized all my tweets was here:

https://storify.com/ebostaph/christopher-columbus-s-discovery-of-the-new-world

 

Also if you would like to go view the tweets on twitter the name I used was @oceanblu1492

Mount St. Helens, the Fire Mountain Queen

Reflection:

I picked the 1980 eruptions of Mount St. Helens because I am writing about the volcano for my History 485 senior thesis. One of the sources I found during my research is a book by Bruce L. Foxworthy and Mary Hill entitled Volcanic Eruptions of 1980 at Mount St. Helens: The First 100 Days. The book was published by the United States Government Printing Office in 1982 and tells the story of the 1980 eruptions through the days leading up to, during, and following the eruptions. The entire book spans from March 20, 1980 to June 27, 1980, I however, I paraphrased from pages 37-86 for May 5, 1980 to  May 31, 1980. I tried to imagine myself as one of the USGS researchers there to study the mountain, so most of my tweets are just updates on the status of the mountain since during events today, people use Twitter as a kind of instant news source. This assignment also gave me the opportunity to learn more of the details about the 1980 eruptions of Mount St. Helens which will definitely benefit me as I write my History 485 thesis about Mount St. Helens.

Bibliography:

Dickerson-Murray, Roberta. “My Mt. St. Helens Nightmare.” n.d.Where Were You When Mt St Helens Blew?. Personal Collection of Roberta Roberta.

Foxworthy, Bruce L. and Mary Hill. Volcanic Eruptions of 1980 at Mount St. Helens: The First 100 Days. Washington: United States Government Printing Office, 1982.

Reingold, Jessica. “Mount St. Helens Crater.” August 8, 2014. Personal Collection of Jessica Reingold.

Reingold, Jessica. “Mount St. Helens Scars.” August 8, 2014. Personal Collection of Jessica Reingold.