The Scottsboro Trials Web Quest Essential Question

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The Scottsboro Trials Web Quest
Essential Question
Harper Lee, author of classic novel To Kill A Mockingbird, is well known for her book, but not for granting interviews. Very few people have encountered Lee (who still lives in the South) speaking to the media. Harper Lee is almost as well known for being a shy, reclusive author as she is for the creation of the classic novel To Kill A Mockingbird. Very few interviews of Lee have been conducted, and she chooses to remain living anonymously in her hometown.
Imagine what it would be like to be recognized as one of America's best authors. Would you want to be famous, or would you choose to seclude yourself like Lee? What are her reasons for being so elusive? How did she devise the characters and plot for her book, and did she ever imagine it would be as renowned as it is today?


In this Web Quest you will research about the Scottsboro Trials by searching for the answers to the following questions:

1.  List the dates of all of the trials.

2.  Explain the outcome of each trial.

3.  How many years passed between the initial trials and the end of them?

4. Why would these people be traveling by train?  

5.  What is hoboing?

6.  Why was Virginia Price so eager to charge the black men with rape?

7.  The "Scottsboro boys" were defended by many.  Which foreign countries protested their sentences?  Why?

8.  What was legally unusual about the youngest defendant's case?

9.  How is Judge Horton different than the previous judges?

10.  What were the "Scottsboro Boys" really guilty of?

Your task is to answer these questions to find out more about the Scottsboro Trials. You will keep track of the answers that you find on a research log and then synthesize this information into a research conference (information to follow).
Websites to peruse and look up the information:

Applying your knowledge:
After researching the Scottsboro Trials, and the results of the trials, reflect on the trial of Tom Robinson. Compare and contrast the two trails, and determine why this part of the book is considered historical fiction. Use the Venn Diagram to complete the comparison.

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