American Portraits

Robert Gould Shaw’s Courageous Decision

In this lesson, students will explore Colonel Robert Gould Shaw’s decision to take charge of the 54th Massachusetts Infantry regiment. Students will learn why it took courage for him to make the decision, its significance to the nation and the overall war effort, as well as how they can make similar courageous decisions in their own lives.

Founding Principles

Equality image


Every individual is equal to every other person in regards to natural rights and treatment before the law.

Individual Responsibility image

Individual Responsibility

Individuals must take care of themselves and their families and be vigilant to preserve their liberty.

Private Virtue image

Private Virtue

The idea that only a knowledgeable and virtuous citizenry can sustain liberty.

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