Writing Contest

Flex your history muscles while you are at home and write an essay for our contest!

Grant County Historical Society is doing an essay writing contest for students in 5th -8th grade. Cash prizes of $25, $15, and $10 will be awarded for 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place essays. Essays will also be posted to our website so others can learn from your work.

For the essay:

Pick an event in history – large or small. Examples of possible topics are: The Vietnam War, the election of a new President or Governor, the flood of 1965, the opening of a business, or something else you have heard your family talk about.

Interview a relative from Grant County about that event. Be sure to practice safe distancing when doing your interview!

Use the “What Questions Do We Ask of the Past” chart to help you conduct your interview and write your essay.

Essays should be 2 pages (approximately 500 words), typed, doubles spaced, and emailed to the Grant County Historical Society at historicalsociety@tds.net by April 12, 2020.  Be sure to include your name on the top of the essay and a way for us to contact you. Prize winners will be selected by May 1, 2020.

The best essays will:

  1. Put the interview in a larger context by explaining what was going on at the time
  2. Have multiple sources – including the interview
    1. Citations—footnotes, endnotes, or internal documentation—are required. Citations are used to credit the sources of specific ideas as well as direct quotations.
  3. Answer at least one question from each category from “Questions we ask of the Past”

Resources for conducting your essay:

Thinking like a historian | The historian’s toolkit | US History | Khan Academy: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vIdMgO-tfyE

“What Questions Do We Ask of the Past” chart below from Thinking Like a Historian: Rethinking History Instruction by Nikki Mandell, PhD and Bobbie Malone, PhD