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What is EvidenceWeb?

EvidenceWeb is a unique tool for teachers and students that displays primary sources. It is a database that contains collections of archival objects (items) that are ready for classroom use, along with educational activities. The archival objects (items) are from the collections of Library and Archives Canada.

You will find:

  • digital images of historic documents, art, and newspaper clippings
  • Historic video files
  • Historic audio recordings
  • Educational resources for teachers
  • Collections based on sites and organized by theme

Each archival collection has:

  • Thumbnails for quick viewing
  • Keyword search capacity
  • Zoom-in function
  • Detailed descriptions and introductory essays
  • Links to Library and Archives virtual exhibition sites on similar topics

How do I explore EvidenceWeb?

There are two ways to explore EvidenceWeb. You can either "browse" by theme or "search" with your own keywords. To browse by theme you use the grouping of sites based on a common theme and each site, in turn, displays the relevant group of archival objects (items). The keyword search, on the other hand, is independent of the theme and site groupings and is a search directly for particular archival objects (items).

Browsing

The Theme Page - Viewing the List of Themes & Associated Sites:

To view the list of themes select the 'Browse Themes' button on the left hand navigational bar. There are 9 themes:

  • Aboriginal Peoples
  • The Arts
  • Disasters and Phenomena
  • Exploration and Settlement
  • Landmarks and Landscapes
  • Notable People and Accomplishments
  • Politics and Government
  • Sports and Leisure
  • War and Military

Each theme has one or more sites associated with it and each site is directly related to a Library and Archives Canada Virtual Exhibition. To view the associated sites select a theme title. For example selecting the "Disasters and Phenomena" theme on the theme page will display the following list of associated sites:

  1. Canada's Unidentified Flying Objects: The Search for the Unknown
  2. Shipwreck Investigations at Library and Archives Canada

The Site Page - Viewing a Site Collection:

Selecting a site title on a theme page opens the appropriate site page and on this page are displayed the linked thumbnails of the archival objects (items) comprising that site collection. There are also links to additional information including the following:

View Essay - displays a detailed description or essay based on the collection of archival objects (items).
EvidenceWeb Learning Resources - takes you to educational activities that can be used to learn about primary sources.
Virtual Exhibition Site - this is an external link taking you outside EvidenceWeb and opening the associated Library and Archives virtual exhibition site.

Selecting a specific thumbnail will take you to an 'Item Display' page.

The Item Display Page - Viewing an Archival Object (Item):

Selecting a thumbnail on the Site page will open the Item Display page on which is a larger version of the archival object (item) and a detailed description:

Title - The title of the archival object (item)
Description - a detailed description of the significance of the archival object (item)
Creator - the creator of the archival object (item): ie, the artist, or photographer, etc.
Date - the date that the archival object (item) was created
Format - the format of the archival object (item): ie, text, audio, video, etc.
Place - the location where the archival object (item) was created
Theme - the EvidenceWeb themes that are associated with that archival object (item)

Select 'View Larger Size' to zoom in on the archival object (item).
Select 'Return to Site Results' to go back to the collection of thumbnails.

Searching

A keyword search is used to find specific archival objects (items) within EvidenceWeb by entering your own keyword, or keywords, into the search box.

You can also narrow down your search by selecting from one or more of the following:

Theme - One or all of the 9 themes
Site - One or all site collections
Format - Type of archival object (item): art, audio, map, photograph, text, video
Place - Province or territory where the archival object (item) was created