A Timeline of English Welfare History


One of our first assignments will be to collectively build a timeline of key events and people in English welfare history.  Last year’s class has pre-populated it with many major points, and each of you will contribute to it by adding a new date, headline and brief description to the timeline (80 words or less) that links to a more detailed blog post (up to 250 words) on your assigned person or event.

To construct the timeline we are using the Knight Lab’s TimelineJS tool. This tool is easy to use and lets you create slick multimedia timelines with no coding knowledge by adding your data to a Google Sheet.

Blog Post

Your first step should be to create a new blog post with a detailed description of your chosen person or event and a list of the sources you drew on to construct it.  See the entry on Gressenhall House of Industry Proposed for an example.

  • Log in to this blog using your Carleton credentials
  • Go to Posts > Add New
  • Fill out the Title field with the Headline for your assigned person or event from the Timeline
  • Compose your post in the body field
  • Categorize your post as Timeline, by clicking the checkbox under Categories in the right sidebar
  • When you are satisfied with your post you can Preview it and then Publish it with the buttons in the top right Publish widget
Add post screenshot
Remember to check the Timeline box under Categories

TimelineJS Entry

Once you have written your blog post, you can come up with a brief (80 word max) summary.  This teaser text will be on the timeline itself, and you will add a link to the more detailed blog post you just created.

  • Open the Timeline of English History Google Spreadsheet (you should all have access if you are logged into Google with your Carleton ID, but if not, send a request to access the document)
  • Insert a new row for your entry
    • Scroll down the list until you find where your entry’s date should be
    • Right click the row number, and choose “Insert 1 aboveor “Insert 1 below” to add a new slide to the timeline
  • Fill out the year column (and end year if applicable)
  • Add your assigned entry in the Headline column, copying the language exactly from the Timeline sign up sheet
  • Add your brief description to the Text column
TimeilneJS example
Add your description to the Timeline in the Text column
  • Link to your blog post from your timeline entry by adding the HTML code below to the end of your text,
    • <a href="YOUR BLOG POST URL HERE" target="_blank">Read More</a>
    • For example, our demo link’s full HTML code is
      <a href="https://hist235.hist.sites.carleton.edu/2016/01/06/gressenhall-house-of-industry-proposed/" target="_blank">Read More</a>
  • Finally, add media to make your entry more engaging by inserting a link to a photo or video on the web.
    • Make sure to check the rights on the image, and cite the source in the Media Credit column.


If you’re stuck you can consult the TimelineJS Help Docs or check out this detailed step by step tutorial that a Carleton student made last term.


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