Working out the “About the Project” pages

Just spent a couple hours cleaning up the “About the Project” page. Wanted to give visitors a sense of our “thesis,” but to also include the acknowledgements on this page. I am thinking about adding the COPLAC logo or maybe pictures of maybe pictures of Lynn Tatum or Dr. Owen and Dr. Mathew. Not trying to get brownie points, just want to break up the wall of text. What do you guys think? Also got my section of the “About Us” subpage finished. Most importantly though, I got a link to the McDonald County Historical Society website on the footer of all of the pages. This took a long time to figure out the “coding” for. May work on organizing the front page now. Just wanted to get some thoughts on how to improve the “About the Project” page.

Website Update

Today I did a bit of work on the About page of the website. I was able to link the “About the Authors” and “Bibliography” pages to the About page so that we could click on the links. I then took some of the paragraphs from our objectives on our contract and edited them to give a brief description of the website and project. I also put in a few sentences about myself in the “About the Authors” section. Me and Jonas plan to also have a picture of each of us on there as well. Later this week me and Jonas will work on the other pages to have the rough draft of our site ready by next week.

I also made a request to the State Archives for State funding and they sent me a pdf of a bunch of records that I am going to go through and incorporate into the tourism/familyland crisis pages.

West Virginia History On View Images

I just called the West Virginia University Library and asked whether we could have permission to use their photographs on our website. They said that it would be fine as long as we signed the associated forms. The jpegs on their site can be used for free but higher quality images are $10 each and require a different agreement form.

Spring Break Research

Sources found:
1) Benning Wentworth’s Claims in the New Hampshire-New York Border Controversy: A case of Twenty-Twenty Hindsight? (1975)
By: Allan R. Raymond

This source secondary source explores the New Hampshire-New York border controversy through a contemporary point of view. The author claims that many look at the controversy through a modern perspective, letting Wentworth’s flagrant disregard for instructions blind them from what really occurred. Wentworth had a legitimate right to dispense the land grants. Raymond’s evidence is based off the New Hampshire occupation of the Dummerstown blockhouse and trading post. Built with private funds in 1724 (in exchange for land), the blockhouse (originally built for frontier security) had a small trading post attached to it (built in 1728). The trading post was intended to maintain Indian goodwill (e.g. maintain trade relations on the border) and did not make much of a profit. Since the trading post did not yield much profits, the oblation to supply troops and maintenance for Dummerstown was debated by Massachusetts, New York, and New Hampshire. New York insisted that New Hampshire should maintain Dummerstown. According to Raymond, “the crucial point, however, is not who maintained the fort, but the view of all three participants, Massachusetts, New Hampshire and the crown, that the outpost was on New Hampshire Soil, that was the colony’s first solid claim west of the Connecticut (23).” By looking at it from this contemporary perspective, we can see the logic behind Wentworth’s actions.

Primary sources mined out of this secondary work:

1) Benning Wentworth to George Clinton, 25 April, 1750, Doc. HIST. N.Y., IV, 533-4.

2) George Clinton to Benning Wentworth, 6 June, 1750, Ibid, IV, 543-5
3) United States Reports. Vermont V. New Hampshire, Vol. 289, (Washington 1933), 593-620.
4) Massachusetts State Archives, General Court Records, Vol. XII, 107.
5) Benning Wentworth to the Board of Trade, IV, 548-9
6) William Slade, Jr. Vermont State Papers, (Middlebury, 1823), 13-16 lists all Wentworth’s grants.

2) Indian Occupation of Vermont (July 1965)
By: Gordon M. Day

This source explores the question of Native American presence in Vermont. It had been widely accepted that there was not a large Native American presence in Vermont in 1749 when Wentworth began giving land grants. Day provides evidence that the Missisquoi tribe were possible occupants of the area, along with the Mohican tribe (though that is still an open question). He also makes a compelling case of the Schaghticokes occupying Vermont as refugees in the wake of defeat during King Phillip’s war. We do not want to completely ignore the Native American perspective of the New Hampshire land grants and the early settlement of Vermont. This article has given us a launching point to include some Native American perspectives throughout out the pages. Undergraduate students interested in Native American history can use this not well talked about question of the Indian presence in Vermont as a paper topic. Hopefully our site can be a launching point for further, in-depth research on the topic.

3) Two Hundred Years in the Hartland Church (January 1962)
By: Virginia Sutherland Bail

Bail explores the religious culture of Vermont prior to and after the American Revolution. Bail focuses more post revolution groups as they make their way onto the Vermont Grants. The religious freedoms built into the Vermont Constitution were extensive, making religious pluralism common. That did not come without its issues, as many small groups of Congregationalists such as the Protestants, Baptists, and Quakers competed for political power. Even with smaller religious groups quarreling over old issues, Bail claims, “the principles of toleration and freedom of worship, incorporated in the constitutions of the United States and Vermont, are debts we owe this new liberalism (18).” Therefore, the post revolution and U.S. and Vermont legislatures had turned their attention away from British occupation and towards the churches and the practices of religion (18). This article will be very useful for Section III of our project when we explore the actual secession of Vermont Republic and its constitution.

Primary Sources that will be used to further the analysis of this sources include:

1) Reason, the Only Oracle of Man. By: Ethan Allen
2) The Vermont Republic Constitution,
There are also other useful resources that are within the footnotes of the article, such as the history of the Baptists in Vermont recorded by Rev. Henry Crocker.

4) Vermont Attitudes toward Slavery: The Need for a Closer Look (1977).
By: Kevin J. Graffagnino

This work explores the strong anti-slavery movement within Vermont and how the constitution of the Vermont reflects anti-slavery sentiments.

Primary Sources that will be used to further the analysis of this sources include:

1) The Vermont Republic Constitution,

5) Bennington and the Green Mountain Boys (1996)
By: Robert E. Shalhope

6) The New Hampshire State Papers

Upstate New York Final Project Contract



1777 – upper portion of upstate NY secedes

1791- seceded portion becomes the State of Vermont

1962 and 1964 – precedent of “one man, one vote” established

2013 – Stephen Hawley introduces a bill that would allow each NYS county to provide feedback for possible secession

Currently, there are various groups calling for upstate secession, with various amounts of cohesion. Upstate New Yorkers claim that they have been adversely affected by policies created by New York City politicians, causing them economic and social hardship. Some have called for New York State to be split up into New York (downstate) and New Amsterdam (upstate). One of the largest disputes among various secession groups is where to classify upstate and downstate. Some say the southern border of New Amsterdam should stretch horizontally from Pennsylvania, while others say that New Amsterdam should encompass everything except Long Island and the NYC Metro Area. The biggest actors currently are:, UpstateNYSecede, State Senator Joseph Robach, and Assemblyman Stephen Hawley.

While the upstate New York secessionist movement is not based on ethnic identity, upstate New Yorkers share a cultural identity based on shared history as well as political, economic, and demographic factors. Upstate New Yorkers generally also share political and economic interests, which provides both cultural unity within upstate as well as significant reasons to break away from downstate. Upstate tends to be a blend of conservatives and moderate liberals. Also, Upstate New Yorkers share certain economic concerns, such as the loss of manufacturing jobs and the flight of businesses that once were central to upstate New York’s economy. Upstate New Yorkers in favor of secession believe that NYC, which is more liberal and has economic interests that are quite distinct from those of upstate, has too much influence in Albany. They argue that this negatively affects upstate, particularly by pushing a more liberal agenda and passing regulations that are driving business out of upstate, resulting in decreasing economic opportunity and freedom. The strategy of upstate New York secessionists is mainly based around amending the NYS Constitution. To do this, the proposal for a NYS Constitutional Convention on the 2017 ballot would need to be passed, and delegates who will support the amendment that would split New York into two different states would have to be elected.

Project Contract

Mission Statement and Goals

In our project, we are tracking the upstate New York secession movement, from the founding of New York State to the present. We are hoping to provide a comprehensive, easily navigated, website that would consolidate information about various upstate NY secessionist groups, as well as explain and analyze their motivations and goals.

We will start by looking at the history of upstate NY secession, by looking briefly at the Vermont secession. Then we will proceed to making a timeline about the movement and tracking it through history. We will focus a lot on the specific grievances presented by upstate NY secessionists and how they evolved over time, specifically since we are dealing with a movement that related to politico-economic grievances. We will end by looking at the current status of the movement, putting emphasis on the various groups currently engaged in upstate secession activism and the legislators in the NYS assembly and senate with upstate NY secession on their agendas. Finally, we will look at the future of the NYS secession movement by researching the upcoming NYS constitutional convention and efforts made by secessionist groups to influence constitution writing.

One goal of our site is to consolidate information on one database, since there are currently many web pages, news articles, and social media pages dedicated to various upstate NY secession movements. However, our primary aim is to explain and analyze the goals and motivations of the many groups involved in the upstate New York secession movement. This includes both leadership analysis and regional analysis of the movement.

Our audience will be primarily college students in this course, our professors, and future employers who might want an example our our technical skills. We will further make a consolidated effort to make accessible to other New Yorkers looking for research about upstate secession and activists hoping to find information and link up to groups using our page. Because of the diversity of New York State, we will ensure to use layman’s terms to describe political concepts and use simple interactive imagery, so it would be accessible to older generations of site visitors. It is our mission to also make the site very hyperlink heavy, to lead visitors to more information and primary sources, since this is a contemporary, and quickly evolving issue.

Basic Site Structure and Intended Features

Our site will consist of multiple sections with different focuses. We will have a homepage with a brief overview and pictures. There will also be an “About” section where we talk about the class and the project and and “About Us” section where we introduce ourselves. A page or section will be devoted to the history of the movement, including the Vermont secession, relevant court cases, and relevant past legislation, to act as a primer to the movement and its history in upstate. This is where we will put a timeline of events. In the history section, we will analyze  the various motives and grievances that have led the upstate NY secessionist movement and further calls for autonomy in the past. There will be another section to address more current aspects of the movement. This will include pages on individual actors, group actors, legislation, and strategy. This is where much of the analysis on leadership and specific movements will be focused. A final section will be focused on the future of the movement, particularly the potential NYS constitutional convention and possible outcomes.


For our WordPress site, we will use the Hemingway theme because it readily displays pages and subpages. We will incorporate interactive elements into our website, specifically a timeline and a map. For the timeline, we will use TimelineJS. For the map, we will use StorymapJS. We will use Canva graphic design software to edit images.

In terms of our page layout, we intend to have a static home page giving a brief overview of the Upstate New York Secession movement. In the About Tab, we intend on having a brief blurb about the class itself, and then our own mini biographies. Then in history, we plan on consolidating all our history onto one page (since we are a rather current movement) and have the timeline on the History tab. In the Present Day tab, we intend on having a page dedicated to the interviews we did with the State legislators, a page detailing the New Amsterdam Movement, and a page detailing other Upstate New York secession movements we found on social media. Finally, we will have a page speculating on the future of the movement, specifically dealing with the upcoming referendum vote in New York State.


  • February 13th – initial visit to Livingston County Historical Society for inquiry regarding possible information about upstate secession  (Maria)
  • February 17th – reach out to several key legislators who have sponsored bills regarding upstate NY secession in the past (Maria)
  • February 23rd – Homepage, About page, and About Us page (Rachel)
  • February 25th – meet in person again and go over contract edits (Rachel + Maria)
  • February 27th – first draft of timeline (Maria) and storymap (Rachel)
  • March 6th – Bibliography of secondary materials to be consulted (Maria + Rachel)
  • March 10th – March 19th – Spring break, work on individual pages (Rachel: Politicians and Future; Maria: History, New Amsterdam, and Social Media Groups)
  • March 20th — final contract due
  • March 23rd – meet and go over website draft (Rachel + Maria)
  • March 27th – first draft of website due
  • March 27th – April 24th – meet weekly to consolidate individual progress
  • April 24th – website must be completed (Rachel + Maria)
  • April 25th – GREAT Day presentation

COPLAC Final Contract

Anthony Mastrantonio
Nate Schnittman

Mission Statement
When looking at our audience, we wish to cater to undergraduate students, our website will be a jumping off point for further research into Vermont secession.
Accessibility is key to our initial planning, we want our visitors to get a comprehensive view of the Vermont Republic with as little hassle as possible. To accomplish this goal, our timelines, story maps, and pages will be simplistic but engaging. We plan on having 3 main sections with multiple sub-pages attached. The three main sections will include the New Hampshire Land Grants of 1749-1764, followed by the formation of the Green Mountain Boys led by Ethan Allen and lastly the Vermont Republic.


I. New Hampshire Land Grants of 1749-1764
● Beginning land grants.
● New Hampshire Governor squabbled with the New York Governor.
● New Hampshire appealed to the Crown (the British Government) for land grants in an effort to prove that the New York Governor had no jurisdiction within current day Vermont.
● The appeal went to the Privy Council. The Privy Council Struck down New Hampshire’s claims and ruled that New York had the rights to current day Vermont. That ruling thrusted the New Hampshire land holders into action, which included Ethan Allen, who held 50,000 acres of New Hampshire land grants prior to the privy council ruling in favor of New York.

II. Formation of the Green Mountain Boys led by Ethan Allen
● Ethan Allen, having a large stake in the New Hampshire land grants (50,000 acres that were useless after the ruling), went to modern day Vermont in 1764 and founded the Green Mountain Boys, a local militia that was dedicated to retaining the land they that viewed as theirs.
● The Green Mountain Boys were largely made of settlers that had a stake in the New Hampshire land grants (almost exclusively).
● The militia was successful in stopping New York law enforcement that tried to evict and arrest the Green Mountain Boys for what was “technically” squatting. Even though men like Ethan Allen legally purchased the New Hampshire land, the ruling voided previous land agreements, making the settlers of New Hampshire illegal “squatters.”
● The Green Mountain Boys ruled modern day Vermont from 1770 to 1777 with little interference from New York.

III. Vermont Republic
● Vermont declared itself an independent republic in 1777.
● They largely remain neutral during the American Revolution, but played a crucial role in the American victory at the battle of Bennington (1777), which was named after Benning Wentworth, the author of the New Hampshire land grants. At the Battle of Bennington, the British suffered high casualties, with over 200 dead and 700 captured. After battle of Bennington, France decided to join the Revolution, which marked a turning point for American forces.
● 1781, the Haldimand Affair rocked the Vermont-colonial relations with news of Ethan Allen and the governor of Quebec in negotiations for Vermont to rejoin the British Empire. Allen was considering making a deal with the governor of Quebec until the battle of Yorktown later in 1781, where colonial America achieved a decisive victory against the British. America had the upper hand against its former imperial masters, Vermont, therefore, decided to join the Union of the United of States instead of the British Empire. Once within the Union of the United States, Vermont traded complete independence (as achieved in 1777), for a degree of political autonomy within a larger, successful union.

Tools we will be using are:
● Word Press
● JS Timeline
● JS Story Map
● Primary source documents
(In-text citation and links)

Connection of the Timeline/ Story Map to the website
The timeline is a broad overview of the all the important parts of the Vermont Republic secession movements will be covering. What the reader sees on the timeline will be a broad overview of our website. Our plan for the website is to cover three main sections of the Vermont Republic, 1) New Hampshire Land Grants of 1749-1764, 2) the formation of the Green Mountain Boys, 3) The actual secession movement, The Vermont Republic 1777-1791. Then each these main sections will have several pages dedicated to them. The timeline is divided this way, we will make the reader aware of this, with a description underneath the Timeline. The story map helps visualize where these important events happened during the emergence of the Vermont Republic. The story map, contains important events such as the Battle of Bennington, which we will talk on one of our pages. Other important events include, the Westminster Massacre, and declaration of independence. In both the timeline and story map, links to the pages where the information is discussed be include. Therefore, the user can use the visual tools of the timeline and story map as table contents for our website. If they look at the Battle of Bennington on the story map, they can click a quick link to the page and research the battle in greater detail.

Our main audience is undergraduate and graduate students looking for information on the Vermont Republic/secession, while still making it user friendly for the general public and those interested in American history. The story map and timeline are interactive programs that will be useful to draw in the general public. In our research so far, we have found lots information on the Vermont Republic, but it is defuse. We hope to condense all of the important information one would need to complete an undergraduate paper on the Vermont Republic. Essentially want our website would be the starting off point for undergraduate work and resource mining. Our audience is primarily college students, therefore, it will be written in academic fashion. It would be something a high school student could use for a report, but will be geared towards college students. It will include primary source analysis and some elements of historiography.

March 20-26
1) Continue source gathering and analyze.
2) Complete rough draft of pages for the website.

March 27th
1) Submit rough draft to COPLAC website.

March 28-April 17
2) Complete Sections, I, II, III on UIS Website.

April 17-21
1) Maintenance and touch ups on website. That includes any graphics that have not yet been added, additional research if needed, and extensive proof reading for grammar mistakes or structural issues.

April 24-26
1) Class presentations of project, we will plan as if we are presenting on Monday the 24th.

McDonald Territory Final Contract

COPLAC McDonald Project Contract Final

Kodey Springate and Jonas Chang
Divided Houses Project Contract
February 11, 2017
Project Site:

Mission Statement

– The goal of this project is to make the cultural, political, and economic aspects of the Territory of McDonald secessionist movement, a little known part of Missouri history, accessible in a user-friendly site. Because there are few resources, particularly accessible resources, available concerning this movement we would like to consolidate these sources in a publicly oriented and accessible site. In this way, the site would be available for anyone to use, but still provide resources useful for other researchers.
– Our research will cover the rising tourist industry in the Ozarks during the mid-twentieth century and how the U.S. highway system was integral to this. We will also explore the various state policies concerning that affected the tourist flow in McDonald County, ranging from state-funded parks and changes in the federal highway system during the fifties, that created tensions within McDonald County. Following this, we will look into what caused the omission of major towns in McDonald County from being included in the state-sponsored tourist brochure, “Vacationland,” the McDonald reaction to this, and the breakdown of communication between the state and county governments that led to the secessionist movement within McDonald county. The role of local and outside support, including the encouragement from Jasper County, Missouri and the State of Arkansas, in lending legitimacy to the concerns of McDonald Countians will be analyzed as well as the seriousness of the Territory of McDonald Provisional Government to follow through with its various plans of secession. Finally, we will explore the methods of reconciliation that occurred between McDonald County and the State of Missouri and analyze whether or not this extreme form of civil discourse was necessary, effective, and achieved legitimacy in the eyes of the State of Missouri.
– The structure of our site will be this: there will be a homepage that will include a picture of some of the secessionists and tourist destinations in McDonald County, a brief summary of the site, a timeline of events, a map to help visitors quickly understand where McDonald County is located, and the content of the site. At the top of the site will be links to the other pages. The map will be done through StorymapJS and will be placed in one of the three columns on the home page. The timeline will be placed in one of the others. The brief description of the site will be placed at the bottom of the page. The other pages will include The Decade Before, The Family Vacationland Crisis, Secession, and Reconciliation. Each page will include text information and photographs. The Decade Before will explore the rising tourist industry in the region and how it became a central part of the county’s economy. It will also discuss the difficulties the county had with federal and state policies that limited funding and removed Noel, the center of the tourist industry within the county, from a federal highway and instead placed it on a state highway. The Family Vacationland Crisis page will explore the immediate cause of the secessionist movement, which was the exclusion of important McDonald County towns from the state tourist brochure. The reasons for this and the reaction of McDonald Countians will be included. The Secession page will guide the site visitor through the formation of the Provisional Government, the implementation of travel visas, the correspondences between the Territory of McDonald and its neighbors, and the Battle of Noel. The final page, Reconciliation, will discuss the dissolvement of the Territory of McDonald and the county’s return to Missouri. It will also explore the swelling of the tourist industry in the county throughout the following decade, hopefully leading the visitor to wonder if the true intentions of the secessionist movement was truly secession.
– General elements will include newspaper articles and photographs from the time period under study. We may also include videos or transcripts from news shows as well, depending on whether or not recordings or transcripts from the time period have been preserved.

Tools We Plan to Use

– We plan to use a the Parabola WordPress theme, which will display page titles at the top of the page and offer an appealing home page.
– We will include a timeline on the main page and will do so using TimelineJS. The same will be done using an interactive map through StorymapJS.
– We do not yet know if a graphic or video editing tool will need to be used because needing to do so is conditional on whether or not we need to edit images for use on the website.

Schedule of Milestones
February 17- Kodey will have scheduled a meeting with Janet Romine by this point.

March 3- Jonas will have done substantial research regarding the role of tourism and the interstate system in the region at this point and will begin constructing the The Decade Before page.

March 10- Jonas will have scheduled visits to the McDonald County Historical Society, the MSU Special Collections, and the Springfield Branch of the Missouri State Historical Society to do archival research over the following week. He will also have done substantial work on the homepage of the website.
Kodey will have called and scheduled a visit to the Missouri State Archives in Jefferson City.

March 13-17- Jonas will do the research listed above and begin further fleshing out the pages of the website.
Kodey will go to Jefferson City to check out the Missouri State Archives

March 24- Jonas and Kodey will have pursued further research as it is required, including making online requests for particular documents from the State Archives and Historical Society. We will continue working to finish the website.

March 31- Have first draft of website ready to go

April 7-23- Continually collaborate to work on website.

April 24- Final draft of website will be finished.

Final Quaker Contract


Our project aims to examine the many conceptions and definitions of secession through the lens of the 17th-century Quaker community. The project will cover about 1650 to 1690 which is a period that includes the events leading up to and immediately after the falling out between the Quakers and Puritans. This will examine this period as a case study in what defines a secessionist movement, and will evaluate what is needed to have a secession based on the different aspects that are specific to the Quaker and Puritan conflict.

We hope to create a user-friendly, engaging site that allows high school teachers and students to easily understand the Quaker story and also interact with the information in a meaningful way. To accomplish this goal we want to make the physical journey of the Quakers the visual centerpiece of our project. We intend to use a geographical timeline as a main feature of our website with the addition of other visual tools to express the material.

Possible Tools:




-Possibly videos, photos, etc.


February 20th—Final contract due  

March 27th—Website Rough Draft due

Beginning of April- Visit to Archive

April 24—Final Project due



-responsible for at least 5-7 sources

-synthesizing narrative to develop Map/Timeline

-establishing contact with local Quaker group/other distant archives and groups


-responsible for at least 5-7 sources

-establishing contact with local archives

-finding accurate images and other supplementary material for website

We will meet every Thursday to discuss project status and work that has been/needs to be done.

Spring Break Update

Unfortunately, my time over Spring Break ended up far less fruitful that I had originally anticipated. The contact that I was able to make with an archive in Boston was out of town while I was in the surrounding area, and I did not have the time that I expected to be able to go into the city itself (I was staying a roughly 45 minute train ride south of the capital) to be able to conduct research of my own. Despite this, I am working on solidifying plans to make a trip within the next 3 weeks to go to the archives at UMass Amherst and conduct research there.

Progress Update

This last week I was able to visit the site of Mountain Meadows Massacre here in Southern Utah. Although the event does not directly correlate with our project, it was a somber and educational experience to set a motivation for this project.

Eben and I drew out a tentative layout of how we would like to compose our site. We have not published/edited our actual site as of yet, as we are still trying to figure out our layout. On Monday, since we will both be back to Southern Utah, we will begin our first publication of the website. I have also been playing around and exploring the Word Press site to familiarize myself better with the website.