What is History?

Essay by HavenJunior High, 9th gradeB-, June 2005

download word file, 2 pages 3.7

It is important that people study the past so we have a better understanding of how we came to be. We also need to study the past so we know how civilizations were and what they did a thousand years ago. History is one of the most important elements in our lives. Archaeologists and historians find and study history using primary and secondary sources. The movie Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade is a prime example of archaeology.

History can be either personal or global. History is past facts that have affected the future. History is the study of the remains of the past from the point of view of the present. History created what we have today. Without history there would be no future. An example of a pivotal moment in our recent history is the World Trade Centre disaster.

To get an idea of what the past was like and what happened, historians and archaeologists look for and study evidence and clues.

Historians use primary and secondary sources to help them. Primary sources were created at the time the people being studied were alive. Jewellery, artwork, personal diaries, records, rubbish, graffiti and body remains such as bones are all primary sources. Secondary sources were produced after the person being studied disappeared. Textbooks, movies, television documentaries and other historian's ideas are all secondary sources.

Archaeology is the scientific study of the past by digging up material remains such as bones. Archaeology is not all about digging up bones but actually researching. 70% of all archaeology is done in the library studying either an artefact or books. Archaeology is all about facts. Facts that have evidence to support them. Archaeologists are able to put together a detailed history of an area by simply analysing the layers that are in the...