I find the writing in Daniel Boone's autobiography interesting. Here is a man who was raised on the frontier in "Indian country," who had some of what today we would call homeschooling but very little formal schooling. His father justified the state of Daniel's formal literacy by saying that his daughters did the writing and Daniel did the shooting.
So what did a frontiersman with nothing but some homeschooling and Bible study write like, back before the state took over the job of education? Here's how his autobiography begins:
"Curiosity is natural to the soul of man and interesting objects have a powerful influence on our affections. Let these influencing powers actuate, by the permission or disposal of Providence, from selfish or social views, yet in time the mysterious will of Heaven is unfolded, and we behold our conduct, from whatever motives excited, operating to answer the important designs of heaven.
"Thus we behold Kentucky, lately an howling wilderness, the habitation of savages and wild beasts, become a fruitful field...."
Using speeches and other historical documents to teach reading comprehension and writing:
In the Event of Moon Disaster: parallelism, cohesion, the semicolon
Karen H recommends the Gettysburg Address for a lesson in parallelism
Jen on teaching the Star Spangled Banner to her 10-year old (and see Comment thread for more)
Glen on Daniel Boone's autobiography