Hollis student excels at Mass. History Day competition

Friday, May 3, 2013

FITCHBURG, Mass. – Applewild School had an impressive showing at the Massachusetts History Day District Competition on March 2 at Barre Middle High School. Among the students were Julia Hillsgrove, of Hollis, and Anna Titcomb, of Groton, Mass., who earned second place for their group exhibit titled “Pearl Harbor: Surprise Attack.”

Fourteen eighth-graders at the school received either a first- or second-place award and three others received special awards from local organizations such as the Worcester Historical Museum, the Clara Barton Museum and the Worcester Sharks.

Several students from New Hampshire who attend Applewild were among those who achieved top honors.

Greer Woolley, of Hudson, and Andrew MacDonald, of Lunenburg, Mass., earned first place for their group documentary titled “Wannsee Conference: Planning for the Final Solution.” Anna Groves, of Nashua, earned honorable mention for her exhibit on “D-Day: The Opening of the Second Front and Turning the Tide on Europe.”

Sarah Bourdelais of Rindge, received special recognition for her paper on “Bone Marrow Transplants” from the Clara Barton Museum. The museum chose hers as the best account of a turning point in medical history.

Ryan Quinlan, of Amherst; and Ethan Oliver of Littleton, received first place for their group documentary “The Transcontinental Railroad: Changing the Way America Moved.” Ryan and Ethan won second prize in the Massachusetts State History Day competition at Stoneham High School on April 6, and qualified to go to the National History Day competition at the University of Maryland to be held June 9-13.

Research on each entry began several months ago using both primary and secondary sources. The theme of this year’s competition was “Turning Points in History: People, Ideas, Events.”

Massachusetts History Day is the state program for National History Day. The mission of the competition is to improve the teaching and learning of history in elementary, middle and secondary schools so that students become better prepared, more knowledgeable citizens.

National History Day, a nonprofit organization located at the University of Maryland, provides a theme each year, along with support materials. Students in grades 6-12 research and create historical projects that relate to the year’s theme. Students can participate as individuals or in groups in these categories: exhibits, performances, documentaries, historical papers and websites.

All of the first- and second-place winners competed in the Massachusetts state finals at Stoneham High School on April 6. Students who were successful in the state competition will represent Massachusetts at the National History Day finals at the University of Maryland on June 9-13.

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