Abstract 8-Volume 6, Number 2, Summer 2011

Mary Sheldon Barnes: An Educator’s Life in Historical Context
Chara Bohan, Ph.D.

James A. Chisholm, Jr., M. Ed., MBA
Georgia State University

Abstract

The challenge of writing a historical biography is interesting from several perspectives.  The writer primarily seeks to provide a clear picture of the subject without imposing personal biases.  Maintaining an objective perspective becomes more difficult when deciding which material to include or exclude.  This challenge became very evident when we began to write about Mary Sheldon Barnes.  She was a leading educator at the end of the nineteenth century in the United States.  It is easy to overlook her writing in educational history, but her impact on teaching methodology is present today in most classrooms.  She was a pioneer because she included “sources” or pieces of original documents and pictures in her first textbook entitled Studies in General History.  Her educational contributions have been blurred for several reasons which are explored in this research.

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