This seminar introduces students to how we learn about people in the past through the use of archival documents. Working with digital copies of documents from the colonial Spanish archives in Sevilla, Spain, Guatemala, and Comayagua, Honduras, we will "read over the shoulder" of the writers whose words form one of our most immediate links to Spanish colonial Honduran life. Students will learn how to locate archival documents online; how to read colonial handwriting; and how we can begin to understand more about society from even brief documents, like receipts for serving as a courier. Working together, we will discuss several longer documents about the lives of native Americans who were obliged to work for Spanish citizens and petitioned for relief, about free black residents of a military fort, and about illegal trade in sugar, rum, and tobacco. Knowledge of Spanish will allow students to gain the most from this seminar.