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Autobiography, Personal Accounts, & Travel Narratives
Autobiography is the story you write about your own life. It's written from the point of view of the person writing the life story. An autobiography is based entirely on the writer's experiences and memories. It might also draw on other primary resources related to the time period, but it is intended to be a factual accounting.
A memoir is a specific type of autobiography focusing on the life of a person. It often focuses on memories, feelings, and emotions. Many memoirs draw on letters, journals, diaries, and photographs.
Confessions of St. Augustine
Viewed by some as the first autobiography, this multiple book autobiography of Saint Augustine is a classic of Christian works written in c.400.
Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writer's Project, 1936-1938
Many narratives from American Memory.
Mary Davison Bradford, 1856-1943
Autobiographical and historical reminiscences of education.
Narrative of William W. Brown: an American Slave
American slave narrative.
Mary E. Ryerson Butin
Active in the National American Woman Suffrage Association
Life and Adventures of Calamity Jane
The autobiography Marthy Cannary, known as Calamity Jane.
Online autobiography transcription.
Angel DeCora: An Autobiography
Autobiography by a woman with Indian parents.
Online autobiography transcription.
Elizabeth Johnson Harris: Life Story 1867-1923
Explore the original manuscript.
Transcription of autobiography.
Glenn McMurry's Autobiography
This online autobiography traces the like of Glenn McMurry from 1917 to 2003. It is titled The Autobiography of an Unimportant Important Man: From Cow Chips through Computer Chips to Damaged Chips.
North American Slave Narratives
Links to many slave narratives from Documenting the American South.
Theodore Roosevelt: An Autobiography
Autobiography of this U.S. president.
The Life of Harriot Stuart
The autobiography of Booker T. Washington.
Beyond Bed Pans: The Life of a Late 19th-century Young Nurse
Autobiographical account of life in 1893.
A Chinese Immigrant Makes His Home in Turn-of-the-Century America
Autobiographical sketch published in 1903.
History Matters: Impact of Movies
Explore the impact of movies on young adults through short autobiographical stories from the 1920s.
A German Radical Emigrates to America in 1885
Excerpt from an autobiography.
“I Stumbled on the Place by Sheer Accident”: Oscar Ameringer Discovers the Cincinnati Public Library in 1888
In this selection from his 1940 autobiography, Ameringer described his discovery of American history books, translated into German, at the local public library.
Kate Richards O’Hare’s Life as a Socialist Party Organizer
Excerpt from autobiography.
“You Would Never Hear People Complain”: Elfido López Recalls Rural Mexican-American Life in the Late 19th century by Elfido López
Excerpt from memoir from 1937.
“We Are Literally Slaves”: An Early Twentieth-Century Black Nanny Sets the Record Straight
In 1912 the Independent printed this quasi-autobiographical account of servant life.
The Autobiography of Miss Jan Pittman (Book and Movie)
Explores the Civil Rights Movement.
Homesick: My Own Story by Jean Fritz (Children's Book)
Author describes her childhood in China of the 1920s.
Arthur Books: Francine's Bad Hair Day (Grade 2-5)
Create self portraits and autobiographies
Corduroy (Grade 2)
Listen to the story and write an autobiography about their own object.
Ancient Egypt Lesson
Students construct a 3-dimensional paper pyramid, cover the inside walls with pictures representing their lives, and write an autobiography.