Revolutionary War: A Great App for American History Buffs and Newbies Alike

Geek Culture

Based on an American History CD-ROM that the publisher, Multieducator Inc., wrote back in 1990, Revolutionary War is totally rewritten and redone and turned into an app. Filled with text, photographs, paintings, and multimedia presentations, the app aims to teach about all aspects of the American Revolution.

The app is divided up into 14 different sections, each with a different focus.

  • About the Revolutionary War – Contains a text intro as well as the author’s overview slide show with voice over, and information on other publisher apps. The company makes a wide variety of United States history apps.
  • Causes of the Revolution – Contains much information, mostly text and images, with icons to tap for more information, of the causes of the war. Original text is included for important documents, and items such as the original engraving of the Boston Massacre by Paul Revere.
  • Major Battles and Events – Addresses all the major battles and events of the war individually, with plenty of information about each. It even includes the entire text of Thomas Paine’s Common Sense, and an image of the original Treaty of Paris.
  • Stories and Myths – Juxtaposes of famous myths and the real stories behind them from this period of time, such as the story of Betsy Ross. The myths are shown in a video, while the real story is in text. Also, famous sayings from the time are similarly compared.
  • Biographies – Has an incredibly long list of short biographies of Revolutionary War era people.
  • Correspondence of Washington – Lists a sampling of George Washington’s correspondence from 1775-1776.
  • Diary of the Revolution – Has the history of the American Revolution from 1775-1776 with seemingly hundreds of entries.
  • Diary of John and Abigail Adams – Contains correspondence of John and Abigail Adams from 1774 to 1782, again with seemingly hundreds of entries.
  • Proceedings of the Congress – Contains the Journal of the Continental Congress from 1774 to 1777, with enough content to keep you busy for weeks.
  • Economics of the Revolution – Details various economic issues involved with the Revolution.
  • Americans During the Period – Discusses groups of people in the United States at the time.
  • Multimedia Presentations – Gathers all of the multimedia presentations in the app in one place for easy viewing.
  • Documents of the Revolution – Contains the text of many important documents from the time, including acts, resolutions, the Declaration of Independence, the Articles of Confederation, and more.
  • Study Terms – Functions as a glossary defining and describing terms, important documents, and events from the time.

The app also has an option to see the recently viewed content, to assign favorites for easy retrieval later, and to print and email content. I was only able to make the email function work with things such as images, however, and not for the pages that had both text and images.

Revolutionary War isn’t a game and may not appeal to non-history lovers, but learning about history by reading and by seeing drawings, paintings, and primary sources is fascinating in its own right. In short, I’m blown away by the amount of information contained in this app. It’s a fantastic resource for anyone interested in this part of the history of the United States. That being said, the interface is simple with a lot of text size and formatting inconsistencies, and some pages have the feel of text files that were just pasted in. I wish there was a way to search its entire contents instead of just the titles, and I’d love to see its sources listed. But the app is easy to use, and you can dig deeply in it and still just scratch the surface of the information it contains.

Revolutionary War costs $4.99 in the iTunes store. It is worth considering for students and autodidacts of all ages.

Note: I received a copy of the app for review purposes.

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