Virtual History: High School

Your parents have decided to move to a totally new place with a completely different environment and culture, leaving behind everything they know. Given a choice, would you go with them?  This was the choice Miriam Lutcher faced when her father moved the family from the developed industrial town of Williamsport, Pennsylvania to the frontier town of Orange, Texas in 1877. Her decision changed Orange forever and helped close a part of the western frontier.

A lecture video will give students an overview of the Texas frontier, a historic look at Orange, and background of Miriam’s life in her late teens as she faced the decision to move with her family or not. It will also explore her husband William Henry Stark’s decision to move to Orange from a small homestead in Newton County in spite of his father’s wishes, which are detailed in a scathing letter written to young William. Students are then prompted to respond to either of these situations, writing their own letter using period technology, the fountain pen.

This program aligns with TEKS for “United States History Studies Since 1877” and is adaptable for English Language Arts and Reading. 


Lesson Plan


Click the image to download the worksheet.

Supply List 

Click to order the following items (or find similar ones) to facilitate the interactive exercise for this lesson. 

Fountain Pens

Cardstock Stationary & Envelopes