Elizabeth Jane Cochran exposed the dark side of mental institutions, went undercover in a box factory, crossed the globe in seventy-two days and proved to her nineteenth-century cohorts that a woman journalist was every bit as good as man.
When Cochran wrote her first column for the Pittsburgh Dispatch, it was unheard of for women to write for newspapers under their own names, so her editor made up the name Nellie Bly for her byline. Determined not to write about fundraising tea parties and ladies’ fashion, Bly went under cover as a patient at a notorious New York mental asylum, was almost arrested by the Mexican government, beat Jules Verne’s hero’s eighty-day trip around the world, and pretty much helped to create the practice of investigative journalism. It’s baffling that such a cool woman fails to make an appearance in mainstream history books.
American Experience: Around the World in 72 Days : This documentary makes a fun introduction to Bly’s life and exploits.
The Daring Nellie Bly : A lively readaloud, this text-heavy picture book traces some of Bly’s most memorable adventures.
Eighty Days: Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland's History-Making Race Around the World : This seriously compelling book focuses on the competition between Bly and Cosmopolitan reporter Elizabeth Bisland as they set out to break Verne’s around-the-world record.
Bylines: A Photobiography of Nellie Bly : Lots of primary resources, including photographs, maps, and other artifacts, lend a personal touch to this biography.
Rebel in a Dress: Adventurers : Bly is one of twelve adventurous women heroes profiled in this excellent book.
Muckraking: The Journalism that Changed America : Bly’s “Ten Days in a Madhouse” is one of the groundbreaking articles included in this collection of American investigative journalism classics. The historical and critical notes that accompany the article are ideal for older students.
Round the World with Nellie Bly : Put together the puzzle to play this globetrotting game.
Homeschoolers and libraries go together like Junior Mints and popcorn. That’s why a little library unit study makes the perfect homeschool project.
Pretty much all our ideas about what the First Lady of the United States should be come from James Madison’s lovely and vivacious wife.
Learn more about the trail-turned-westward-highway that helped define westward expansion in the United States.
This winter is the perfect time to explore the world of Salvador Dali, and these resources will help you do just that.
Why is it so easy to hate England's notorious King John? Oh, let us count the ways in this trash-talking unit study.
How did a break-in at a campaign office lead to the resignation of the President of the United States? This list of resources will help you investigate this chapter of U.S. history.
“To be free is not merely to cast off one’s chains, but to live in a way that respects and enhances the freedom of others,” Mandela famously said. Learn more about the life of South Africa’s celebrated leader with this little unit study.
Carrie’s family wanted to study the history of civil rights in the United States, and they found the project incredibly rewarding. These were some of their favorite resources.
Women's History Month: Girl reporter Nellie Bly changed the face of journalism and made major strides for women's rights.
You may think you already know everything about Harriet Tubman, but her life is a lot more interesting — and more complicated — than you might expect.
We've got a fun idea for every single day of National Poetry Month.
The Harlem Renaissance was an explosion of creative energy fueled by Black Americans, and it’s a rich topic for your homeschool high school.
From lonely child to merciless monarch, Queen Mary I of England never seemed to catch a break. Mark the 500th anniversary of her birth (on Feb. 18, 1516) by learning more about England’s first queen regnant.