DAR discusses National History Day projects with students

Wednesday, May 30, 2018
Alayna Rice, Mikayla Lundy, Tiahna Burton and Mrs. Pricilla Robinson. / Submitted

Members and guests of Buena Vista Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, were able to visit with three members of Storm Lake Middle School about their National History Day projects. These TAG (Talented And Gifted) students were guided by Mrs Priscilla Robinson. National History Day is a non-profit education organization involving middle- and high-school students around the world in conducting original research on historical topics of their own interest. This year’s theme was “Conflict and Compromise in History.”

Alayna Rice chose as her project the Orphan Train. Homeless children were moved from large Eastern cities to foster homes in rural areas of the midwestern United States. They ran from 1854 through 1929 and transported about 200,000 children. Alayna explained how she researched her topic using the internet, personal contacts, and a trip to the Orphan Train Museum and Research Center in Concordia, Kansas. She was able to explain to her DAR audience the lives the children led after their “adoption” from records and materials she found in her research.

Mikayla Lundy and Tiahna Burton teamed up to explore the Amistad case. This involved the illegal capture and sale of Africans from the area today known as Sierra Leone. These people were transported to Cuba to work on Caribbean plantations. They rebelled, seizing the ship Amistad, killed two crew members, and ordered the rest of the crew to sail them back to Africa. They were intercepted off Long Island by the US Navy and taken prisoner. The U S Supreme Court trial was one of the most important court cases involving slavery in US History. These slaves eventually won their freedom. Mikayla and Tiahna explained the details of international treaties and laws that affected the case. They also were able to give details of the personal involvement of numerous famous individuals.

As usual the National History Day presentations were educational and illuminating. This year was extra-special. Mrs. Pricilla Robinson has been nominated for the middle school Harris History Teacher Award by the State Historical Museum of Iowa, administrator of the National History Day program in Iowa. Fifty-seven affiliates nominate one middle school and one high school teacher for the annual awards. (The winners will be announced on June 14.)