This trunk highlights the importance of the Revolutionary War as a maritime conflict, which pitted the world’s two strongest naval powers—Britain and France—against each other for dominance of the seas. Resources in the trunk include introductions to key commanders of each navy, summaries of important naval battles of the Revolutionary War, and items related to the comparatively smaller Continental Navy and American privateers. The trunk also features items portraying life at sea for sailors, including reproduction clothing and primary source images that demonstrate the divide between naval officers and the common seamen who performed daily chores aboard ship. The trunk also includes materials about sleeping and eating conditions on ships and a reproduced copy of the first clinical trials testing treatments for scurvy.
We've borrowed the Hope Trunk from the Oklahoma City National Memorial Museum several times in the past few years, and I hope to get it again for this year's class. The contents help me tell my own story from the terror bombing of the Murrah Building in 1995. The museum's own website describes it:
The Hope Trunk: An Offering of Positive Education is a program using the story of the bombing to educate students about the senselessness of violence and the need to find more peaceful means to solve our differences. The trunk...contains artifacts, visual materials, and classroom exercises that may be used as a stand alone unit or incorporated into regular math, geography and reading/literature lessons.