Chicago History Fair

Leadership & Legacy in History

The First Division Museum at Cantigny Park is sponsoring a cash award for the best high school entry relating to military history.

Chicago Metro History Fair:

Every year, since 1977, practically 20,000 Chicago area students sharpen their knowledge of history. By working individually or in groups, participants focus on learning how to research and grow their independent thinking skills as a result of participating in the History Fair experience. After asking questions, researching, analyzing, and forming an argument, these young scholars present their unique conclusions through exhibits, performances, papers, and documentaries that are demonstrated and displayed at regional, state, and national competitions, and other public events.

McCormick Research Center:

History Fair contestants are strongly encouraged to use and benefit from the Robert R. McCormick Research Center, located inside the First Division Museum. For assistance with projects, students and educators can call 630-260-8186 for project research appointments. We are enthusiastically looking forward to helping History Fair participants.

To learn more, visit the Chicago Metro History Fair website at

Past Winners

Cantigny Award for Excellence in Military History
(sponsored by the First Division Museum at Cantigny Park)

2015 Winners:
Ermelinda Arrieta and Jose Garcia from Waukegan High School for "JROTC and the Footprint of the Vietnam War"
Chatham Hedges, Rodger Gruchot, and Peter Gruchot from Lakes Community High School for "The Life and Legacy of Frank Dunlap"

2013 Winners:
Hwangchan Yu and Adriana Gonzalez from Waukegan High School for "Waukegan in Unifrom"
Monica Magdaraog, Christopher Rohrbeck, and Michael Vernon from Von Steuben High School for "The Black Hawk War: Avoidable Genocide or Turning Point in Illinois?"

2012 Winners:
Noel Cabanas from Payton College Prep High School for "A Blood Revolution in the World Wars"
Henry Sise, Riley Shore, Yancheng Du, Kevin Wadowski, and James Daigler from Stevenson High School for "USS Chicago: The Ship That Won the War"

2011 Winners:
Martha Aguirre from Roosevelt High School for "Angels with the Red Cross: The American Nurses of WWI"
Madeleine Tyler from Alcott High School for the Humanities for "Eighty Acres of Hell"

2010 Winners:
Sarah Holmstrom from Morgan Park Academy for “Camp Douglas: Where Confederates Come to Die”
Daniel Haggerty from Mt. Carmel High School for “Ocean Flyers Train far from the Sea: Chicago’s Innovative Aircraft Facility” (this paper advanced to National History Day)

2009 Winners:
Sophia Gomez-Doyle and Olivia Daniels from Lincoln Park High School for the Project “‘I Did Not Interview the Dead!’: David Boder’s Revolutionary Interviews in Post-War Europe.”
Yoon Jeon Kim and Domitille DeBoissiere from Lincoln Park High School for “Jane Hoge: Leader of the Sanitary Fairs.”

2008 Winners:
Matthew Goodwin, Gregory Svetov, Darek Krolczyk and Matea Selak of Niles West High School for their exhibit, “All but Forgotten: Camp Douglas”,
Yousef Ismail of Prosser Career Academy for his exhibit, “Eighty Acres of Hell”,
Jessica Orana of Von Steuben Metro Science Center for her exhibit, “G.I. Bill: The Veteran’s Needed Recognition”.

Images (Click to Enlarge)

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