Home      Programs/Workshops     NMGS Press      Membership    Contact Us

History Day

National History Day (NHD) is not just one day, but a yearlong program for Junior and Senior level students that makes history come alive by learning about issues, ideas, people, and events. The program lets students express what they have learned through a creative and original performance, documentary, paper, web site or three-dimensional exhibit. What better way to keep New Mexico history alive in our schools? More about History Day in New Mexico.

Karen S. Daniel, CGSM NMGS member and former New Mexico Genealogist editor, serves as liaison between the New Mexico Genealogical Society and the state coordinator for History Day in regard to our participation and prizes offered.

She also serves as a judge at the state finals and often at the regional competition. Ms. Daniel can be reached at kdangene@msn.com or through info@nmgs.org.


The State Finals

Themes and awards over the years:
2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009| 2010

2011 theme will be: "Debate and Diplomacy in History: Successes, Failures, Consequences." 


Award 2010 Award Recipients
The theme: "Innovation in History: Impact and Change."

The New Mexico state finals of National History Day were held Friday, April 23rd at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.  Regional finalists from all parts of the state attended the day-long event.  The New Mexico Genealogical Society participated in this event for the seventh year, offering five $100 awards. 

arrow-rightThree of these awards were offered thanks to the generosity of members Patricia Black Esterly of Albuquerque, NM, and Dr. Thomas G. Munyon of San Francisco, CA. The fourth and fifth awards are funded by the initial sponsor, the New Mexico Genealogical Society. See photos of displays.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Award The NMGS Best Senior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source material in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic. The 2010 winner is Christina Hart of Legacy Christian Academy in Alamogordo, New Mexico. Christina won $100 for her exhibit entitled "The Panama Canal" and was inspired by her father who was born in Panama to a military family.  Christina wanted to know more about the country in which her father was born, as well as the permanent impact the completed Panama Canal had on future trade and commerce.  She also discussed problems encountered by disease and construction challenges in building the canal.  Christina's use of primary sources include a personal interview and personal family photos taken of the Panama Canal.

Award The NMGS Best Junior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source material in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic. The award went to Lauren Gruda of Albuquerque Christian School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. She won $100 for her exhibit entitled "A Snapshot of Change" which was inspired by the Brownie camera and how it revolutionized photography for everyone.  Lauren pointed out that while recording of images through drawing, painting, and early forms of photography had long been in existence, the Brownie camera's ease of use and low price allowed everyone to capture "everyday events like birthdays, a baby's first haircut, a new pet, and family vacations."  Lauren's use of primary sources included interviewing her parents about what cameras were like in their childhood, advertisements, and photos of family and family activities through the generations, extending back to daguerreotype photos.

Award The Nell D. Munyon Award displaying the best documented use of primary sources, including oral history sources. The winner was Nataanii Hatathlie of Kirtland Central High School in Kirtland, New Mexico. He won $100 for his exhibit entitled "Navajo Government: Serving the Diné."  Nataanii's family are descendants of Henry Chee Dodge.  Nataanii was interested in learning more about how the Navajo Nation was formed and its system of governing.  In the process, he learned it is the most sophisticated form of Native American government in the United States and Canada and has served as a model for other tribal governments in their dealings with the United States federal government.  Nataanii's use of primary sources included a personal visit to the Navajo Council Chamber at Window Rock, Arizona, Navajo treaties with the United States, photos, and records of the United States Department of the Interior.

Award The Thomas Henry Munyon Award displaying the best documented use of primary sources in medical history was presented to Jessica Arreola of West Mesa High School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jessica's exhibit was entitled "Bacteria's Nemesis: Penicillin."  In her research, Jessica found just how far-reaching and complex the benefits of penicillin were, including its history, benefits, and the diseases it eliminated.  Penicillin changed our world completely by reducing death and suffering in everything from simple infections to surgical procedures.  Jessica's use of primary sources included personal interviews with physicians and pharmacists, photographs, historical statistics, and a documentary.  Jessica's bibliography and display were outstanding, and she will be representing New Mexico in the national finals in senior exhibits this summer in Maryland.

Award Our newest award:
The Patricia Black Esterly Award displaying the best documented use of primary sources in Spanish New Mexican History.
The winner was Jonathan Salazar of Chamisa School in Los Alamos, New Mexico. His website category entry was entitled "Acequias: An Innovative Way to Conserve Water." 

Jonathan's project was inspired by an uncle involved with the New Mexico Acequias Association and a grandfather who serves as president of a soil and water conservation board.  These family members told Jonathan this subject would help him to learn about his culture and something his ancestors were instrumental in bringing to New Mexico.  In the process, Jonathan learned the history of the acequia, its importance to farmers and ranchers of yesterday, and its continued importance to friends and neighbors of today.  Acequias are a critical part of New Mexico's water conservation systems, and their success has caused other states to look at the process of acequias for their own water needs.  Jonathan's use of primary sources included personal interviews with local mayordomos, a visit to Taos to meet with the manager of Taos Soil and Water Conservation, photographs, and New Mexico laws and procedures governing acequias.  Jonathan's website can be viewed at <http://69324692.nhd.weebly.com>.


Award2009 Award Recipients
The theme: “The Individual in History: Actions and  Legacies.”

 

arrow-right Two of the awards are offered thanks to the special generosity of NMGS member Dr. Thomas G. Munyon of San Francisco, California. Two of the awards are funded by the New Mexico Genealogical Society. In 2010, a 5th award is being offered.

Award NMGS Best Senior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source materials in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic.  The winner for 2009 was Melia Anthony, a student at Shiprock High School, Shiprock, NM. 

Award Melia's exhibit was entitled "Leonard Crow Dog Sr., The Man with the Medicine."  She chose this exhibit to honor her grandfather, Leonard Crow Dog, Sr., a spiritual leader, because "growing up as a child in a home that consists of a lot of traditional practices," Melia learned that her grandfather had much to do with the person she has become today. 

Mr. Crow Dog, Sr.'s life was greatly influenced by the American Indian Movement (AIM) and the Siege at Wounded Knee in 1973.  He never went to public or boarding school, but learned the old Lakota ceremonial traditions from his father, Henry Crow Dog.  During the time of the American Indian Movement and Wounded Knee, he was a spiritual leader among Native Americans fighting for their rights.  Melia informs us through her exhibit and process paper that he has worked to bring back old Lakota ceremonial ways and traditions in risk of being lost forever, and he sets an example for future generations by teaching the next generations the traditional ways.  Melia herself is learning these ways from her grandfather.

Melia conducted her research by looking at documents and interviewing her grandfather who spoke in his own Lakota tongue, and for which she translated.  Stories were remembered from her extended family of parents, uncles and aunts, and other elders also contributed.  Melia obtained photographs from her grandfather's personal collection and other information from his personal web site.

Award NMGS Best Junior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source materials in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic.  The winner for 2009 was Robert Chanez-Jacks, a student at Mountain View Middle School in Alamogordo, NM.

Robert's exhibit was entitled "History of a U. S. Sailor - Alfredo 'Poncho' Carabajal."  Robert stated that the person he studied was not "a president, an inventor, or a major influcnce in history" but "a man who was a part of history. . .who served in the United States Navy during the Korean War and World War II."  Alfredo was Robert's step-grandfather, and Robert's exceptionally beautiful display was a testament to the mark his grandfather made in history as a United States Navy Sailor and to the mark he has made in his family's lives in sharing that history, memories, and stories with them.  Alfredo chose to volunteer for military service but then also made it his career.  Robert believes individual sailors have an influence many are not aware of as they put their lives on the line for all Americans.

Robert's research included numerous interviews with the family members of Alfredo Carabajal, and from them he was able to obtain family photos, documents, certificates, and a cruise book from one of the ships Alfredo had served on.  Robert also interviewed current Navy personnel at his local Naval recruitment office who gave him valuable advice on memorializing his Hispanic step-grandfather through his military career, as well as information on ships and life in the Navy as a seaman.  Robert also used the internet and books to find information on Naval history and the history of World War II.

The following thank-you to NMGS was received from Robert:  "I would like to thank . . .the Genealogical Society for the award they presented me . . .at the National History Day State Competition . . .it was an honor to be able to present my step-grandfather's accomplishments he made in history. . . even though he was no one individually famous in history, he was famous to his family, friends and fellow shipmates because he was one of many USN sailors that fought for the rights and freedom of all Americans. . .It is groups such as yours . . .that give students the opportunity to strive and achieve."

Award The Dr. Thomas G. Munyon Award for Medical History went to Megan Lunsford who had an individual Junior Division exhibit entitled "Gracefully Insane:  Behind Closed Doors."  Megan is from Heights Middle School in Farmington, NM.  Her topic centered around the mental health reformer, Dorothea Dix (1802-1887).  Megan is interested in mental health and wanted to broaden her research to include information about the horror of insane asylums and those individuals who worked to prevent abuse in them.  Dorothea Dix became one of the most important figures in mental health history, although generally not recognized to the extent that she should be.  Megan's board included information about Dorothea Dix's life, focusing on her work in mental health. 

Information was displayed in chronological order and included numerous photographs.  Megan found information in her library as well as on the internet, and she found newspapers to be particularly useful. 

Primary sources included a letter that Dix sent to the Massachusetts Legislature requesting improved rights for the insane and detailing events she had witnessed across the nation regarding their abuse; a journal kept by a mental patient recording his mistreatment and how Dorothea Dix improved his life in her quest for social reform for the mentally ill; additional first hand accounts by patients who were abused throughout stays in asylums; and government documents including files, surveys, and analysis on mental health.  Megan used a genealogical web site to locate Dorothea Dix's gravesite, including photos, quotations, and other information.

AwardThe Dr. Thomas G. Munyon Award for Native American History went to Dillon Chavez who had an individual Senior Division exhibit entitled "The Boy Scout of America - Charles Alexander Eastman."  Dillon is from Bloomfield High School in Bloomfield, NM.  Dillon's inspiration for his topic came from watching an HBO video in 2008 entitled "Bury My Heart at Wounded Knee" which detailed the achievements of Dr. Charles Eastman, a Sioux (1858-1939).  Dillon felt that Dr. Eastman's achievements were worth pursuing and that he deserved recognition for his efforts to improve relations between the United States Government and Native Americans.

Award Dillon located material in his school library and on the internet, and found particularly helpful documents from the National Archives, including Native American census records and photographs for his board.  In his research, Dillon discovered that Dr. Eastman had written several books during his lifetime, and other Native American authors contributed to the search.  Dillon's research revealed that Dr. Eastman was one of those instrumental in founding the Boy and Girl Scout movement in America, thus providing a way for America's youth from all ethnic backgrounds to come together through outdoor activities to gain knowledge and skills.  Dr. Eastman's work also focused on gaining recognition for Native Americans through better health care and through his personal writings, public lectures, and teachings to youth.

Dillon's primary sources also included an interview with a descendant of Charles Eastman which provided him not only with information about Dr. Eastman's life but with comparisons of present and past conflicts that he might have experienced if he were alive today.

As always, it was an honor and pleasure to participate in New Mexico History Day and to represent the New Mexico Genealogical Society in this valuable work of helping students become excited about history.  I would also like to express my deepest thanks to NMGS member, Dr. Tom Munyon, for his sponsorship of the Native American and medical history awards.


Award 2008 Award Recipients
The theme: “Conflict and Compromise.”

arrow-rightThe New Mexico state finals of National History Day were held Friday, April 25th at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque.

Regional finalists from all parts of the state attended the day-long event. The topic for 2008 around which students in grades 6-12 had to develop their exhibits, papers, documentaries, or dramatic performances was “Conflict and Compromise.” The New Mexico Genealogical Society participated in this event for the fifth year, offering four $100 awards. Two new awards were offered thanks to the special generosity of member Dr. Thomas G. Munyon of San Francisco, California.

Congratulations to all the winners!

Award The $100 winner of the Best Senior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source material in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic was Nathaniel Jim of Kirtland Central High School in Kirtland, New Mexico. Nathaniel’s exhibit was titled “Conflict & Compromise of Uranium Mining in the Four Corners” and was inspired by the death of his own grandfather, a uranium miner, who died from cancer there. He wanted to find out how the uranium mines had altered the lives of workers, as well as their health and that of their families. Nathaniel made use of the life stories of surviving uranium miners, as well as personal interviews. He also used newspaper articles and letters.

Award The $100 winner of the Best Junior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source material in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic was Jonah Townsley of Albuquerque Christian School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jonah’s exhibit was entitled “A Date Which Will Live in Infamy: The Conflict and Compromise of Pearl Harbor” and was also inspired by and dedicated to his grandfather, Arthur Douglas Townsley, who was stationed at Schofield Barracks, Honolulu, on December 7th, 1941. Jonah began his project this past summer when he visited the Pearl Harbor Memorial in Hawaii, gathering information there and interviewing participants. His exhibit was a visual delight for those interested in military history, and his primary and secondary source bibliography was outstanding.

Award The $100 winner of the Dr. Thomas G. Munyon Award displaying the best documented use of primary sources, including oral history sources, in Native American history was Ashkii Hatathlie of Kirtland Central High School in Kirtland, New Mexico. Ashkii’s exhibit was entitled “The Navajo-Hopi Land Disputes: An Unfair Compromise,” and addressed a conflict involving forced relocation that has not even today been effectively resolved. This event was important in that it was such a large forced relocation of American Indians. Ashkii used primary documents such as public laws, agreements, legal cases, and treaties to interpret and understand this event. Ashkii’s primary and secondary source bibliography was outstanding, as was his exhibit board. This is Ashkii’s second award from NMGS. In 2007, Ashkii won the NMGS award for Best Senior Individual Exhibit and placed 13th in the nation at the national finals in Maryland for that exhibit.

Award The $100 winner of the Dr. Thomas G. Munyon Award displaying the best documented use of primary sources in medical history was Lacy Walters of Tibbetts Middle School in Farmington, New Mexico. Lacy’s exhibit was entitled “Gruesome Experiments at Auschwitz.” Although an especially difficult topic, Lacy’s focus was that while experiments performed during the Holocaust should never have been performed on any living organism, these experiments did later assist scientists in learning much about the human body and how it works. Lacy’s revealing exhibit caused viewers to stop and reflect on this especially sad chapter in history. Her bibliography was outstanding and made use of presidential papers, letters, and diaries.

Award NMGS’s $100 winner for the Best Junior Individual Exhibit displaying the best documented use of primary source material in a genealogical, family history, or community history topic was Jonah Townsley of Albuquerque Christian School in Albuquerque, New Mexico. Jonah’s exhibit was entitled “A Date Which Will Live in Infamy: The Conflict and Compromise of Pearl Harbor” and was also inspired by and dedicated to his grandfather, Arthur Douglas Townsley, who was stationed at Schofield Barracks, Honolulu, on December 7th, 1941. Jonah began his project this past summer when he visited the Pearl Harbor Memorial in Hawaii, gathering information there and interviewing participants. His exhibit was a visual delight for those interested in military history, and his primary and secondary source bibliography was outstanding.


Award 2007 Award Recipients
The theme was: "Triumph and Tragedy in History."

Award Ashkii Hatathlie, a student at Kirtland Central High School in Kirtland, New Mexico, was awarded the prize for best senior individual exhibit. Ashkii's exhibit and process paper was entitled "The Triumph of the Native American Church."  According to Ashkii's research, the Native American Church, the largest indigenous religion in North America, underwent a phase that changed the way people viewed indigenous religions generally.  The Native American Church, founded by Native Americans for Native Americans, is based on traditional cultural beliefs.  Through a legal process extending to the Supreme Court, the Native American Church won its battle to exist, thereby furthering the tenet of freedom of religion.  Ashkii's excellent bibliography revealed his wide use of primary materials including records of the National Archives.  His exhibit also won several other awards.

Award Jesse Velasco, a student at Mesa View Middle School in Farmington, New Mexico, was awarded the prize for best junior individual exhibit.  Jesse's exhibit and process paper was entitled "Navajo Long Walk:  Tragedy among Navajos."  Jesse chose his topic because he had heard many "stories from my grandfather and other relatives about this event," and being Navajo himself, was "deeply affected" to learn about what happened to his people.  Jesse's exhibit also included a timeline and photographs, and his bibliography and process paper were excellent.  He was especially knowledgeable about Navajo oral history concerning this event, and he was able to interview a living descendent of Barboncito, a Navajo leader during the time of the Long Walk, to learn more for this project.


Award 2006 Award Recipients
The theme was: “Taking a Stand in History: People, Ideas, Events.”

NMGS presented $100 prizes on April 28 2006 for History Day papers to the writers below. There were no exhibits this year that dealt specifically within the topic in a genealogical or family history way. The winners, therefore, were based on what would fall into broadly-defined community history topics. The winners were: Senior Individual - Rosa Reyes, West Mesa High School, Albuquerque. Rosa's exhibit was entitled "The Tuskegee Airmen: Between Two Wars." Rosa's excellent exhibit used primary source materials including photos, Supreme Court cases, a diary kept while serving in Europe, and newspapers.

Award Junior Individual - Micah Montiel, Dugan Tarango Middle School, Lordsburg. Micah's exhibit was entitled 'Resistance From Within: The White Rose.' Micah's excellent exhibit used primary source materials including photos, copies of German leaflets published at the time and which had also been translated, and copies of translated letters which the imprisoned students sent to their parents. For those who aren't familiar with the White Rose episode in history, it involved a group of college students who took a stand against the moral injustices of Nazi Germany and were executed. 


Award 2005 Award Recipients
"Communication in History: The Key to Understanding."

Award Best Senior Exhibit: Lauryl DeJong, Rio Rancho High School, NM. Exhibit titled "V-Mail" (Victory Mail). Lauryl's project also won first place in State in her category.

Award Best Junior Exhibit: Erin Thompson, Heights Middle School, Farmington, NM. Exhibit titled "Letters From Home."

About this project

For more information on National History Day, see http://www.nationalhistoryday.org

Comment from Karen Daniel at conclusion of 2008 History Day.
"As always, this day was a personally rewarding experience for me as both judge and spectator. NMGS's participation to encourage not only family history research, but scholarly historical research, can only help to create a positive experience for New Mexico students.  I hope the board sees fit to continue our participation in this way on a yearly basis. 

I also have noticed over the last three years that more and more groups are coming onboard to offer prizes.  This year's prizes came also from the American Civil Liberties Union of NM, the Roger Baldwin Award for best projects on Civil Rights, The Albuquerque Association for Gifted and Talented Students, the Arab World and Islamic Resources, the Charles Reed Center of Western Studies at BYU, the Farm and Ranch Heritage Museum, the Historical Society of NM, the NM Steam Locomotive and Railroad Historical Society, the Office of the State Historian, and the Southwest Oral History Association.  We are, indeed, in good company."         Karen S. Daniel


Comments from Ms. Trevor Carter, State Coordinator, after the 2010 project awards.

This was our best year in my 11 year history with NM NHD.  We had 6 projects go to the finals. These students were in the top 12 in the nation and around the globe.  (Go to http://nhd.org and click on winners to see the finalists) We had two projects WIN, a first place in JR Group Documentary Alicia Page and Allison New from Moriarty  project The Smokey Bear Campaign:Igniting National Awareness  and a second place in Jr Individual Performance, Emma Duran from ABQ.  Satyagraha.
Only 20 states/affiliates (there was a group from Shanghai this year) had any winners and I am very proud of all our NM participants, the teachers, judges and parents that are doing SO much to help history day students.  I hope to see everyone back next year.


New Mexico Genealogical Society 
New address: PO Box 27559
Albuquerque, NM 87125-7559      USA

Copyright 1998-2010 New Mexico Genealogical Society
NMGS Web Editor: Patricia Black Esterly