Photo 1: “Milk strikers and a pile of empty milk cans next to train tracks. Bill Nemeth (left) is pouring out milk in an attempt to create a shortage that would raise milk prices.”Photo 2: “Fidel Castro sits in a hammock while smoking a cigarette and speaking with his brother Raul who is crouching on the ground. Photo taken during the Cuban Revolution in Oriente Province, Cuba.”-Wisconsin Historical Society
“Daisy Bates, an American civil rights activist, publisher and writer who played a leading role in the Little Rock integration crisis of 1957, looking through a broken window repaired with tape.”-Wisconsin Historical Society
“Political cartoon of Robert M. La Follette, Sr. A verse is written below the cartoon and refers to the period when he first became a senator. The verse is entitled "From the Railroads to La Follette" and reads--From the Badger wilds comes an "ornry cuss" With a lot of noise and a lot of fuss To make in the senate an awful muss And mix up a horrible dose for us. He will not be fixed and he spurns our bait Nor would he be governor of his state He's whetted his knife for the special rate And swears that he'll slaughter our dear rebate.”-Wisconsin Historical Society
Wisconsin (The McCormick-International Harvester Collection is at the Wisconsin Historical Society): Innovations in farm equipment in the first half of the 1800s launched a revolution in agriculture. Cyrus McCormick was at the forefront of these mechanical devices, which eventually allowed farmers to harvest grain more efficiently and with less labor than ever before. What impact did this have on agricultural practices and lives of farmers? How did it change land use or the price of food? United States: Polio was a serious concern for families and the government until the development of a vaccine. Epidemics of this disease shook communities and had significant, lifelong consequences for those afflicted. Jonas Salk developed a vaccine in the 1950s along with the help of many organizations, like the March of Dimes. The medical community and government implemented campaigns to inoculate as many as possible from polio. There are many ways to connect these ideas to the annual theme – how was the vaccine, the fundraising work of the March of Dimes or even the vaccination campaigns examples of revolution in history?
Wisconsin: Menominee Ada Deer is a champion of Native American rights who led the successful campaign to restore federal recognition of the Menominee Tribe. What was the reaction to this revolutionary change in policy? Did it help to reform the relationship between other tribes and the federal government?United States: There are many possible topics that are connected to the Industrial Revolution in the United States. Consider exploring one particular issue connected to this revolution, like the crusade against child labor. Why were children an important part of the workforce? What dangers did they face and how did this fuel the movement to reform the practice?
United States: You can likely find one of Thomas Nast’s political cartoons in the pages of your very own history textbook . His work addressed a variety of issues, from slavery and reconstruction to Boss Tweed and Tammany Hall. Take a close look at one particular issue in history that Nast addressed in his cartoons. How did the reaction of one man influence public opinion and history?
.United States: There are many connection between the Civil Rights Movement and this year’s NHD theme. If we look at the Civil Rights Movement as the revolution, one reaction to this was the desegregation of schools through Brown v. Board. The struggle to implement this reform can be seen in the actions of the Little Rock Nine in Arkansas in 1957.
Wisconsin: Les Paul developed the solid-body electric guitar and revolutionized the sound of music. How did musicians react to this new innovation? What impact did it have on the sound of different types of music? United States: More than just designing homes and buildings, Frank Lloyd Wright created a whole new architectural style – Organic Architecture - in which the buildings harmonized with their environment. How did the innovative architecture of Wright change the way buildings were designed? What reaction did other architects have to his ideas?
Wisconsin: During the Great Depression of the 1930s, the prices of farm products dropped, while farmers’ production and shipping costs rose. In 1933, small Wisconsin dairy farmers turned to what they called a “Boston Milk Party.” In a series of strikes, they withheld milk and blocked it from the market. What effects did the protest have on the rest of Wisconsin, especially urban areas? United States: The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire took the lives of 146 immigrant workers in New York in 1911. Many who died were trapped in the building or jumped from the 9th floor to their deaths. What were the typical conditions for workers at the time? What were the reactions of those on both sides – workers and management – to the fire? What long and short term reforms resulted from this tragedy?
Wisconsin: Gaylord Nelson was a Wisconsin native who, after serving in World War II and becoming a lawyer, took political office. He is well-known for founding Earth Day and creating a following for the conservation movement. How did Nelson’s ideas on the environment influence the way the legislature dealt with such issues and inspire regular people? What reforms resulted because of his work on conservation in Wisconsin and beyond?United States: Rachel Carson was a scientist and author who was most well-known for her book “Silent Spring.” Published in 1962, her book publicized the dangers of pesticides for humans and the environment, sparking a revolutionary environmental movement and prompting a reactionary stance from industry. Why did she write this book? What long-term reforms did her book inspire?
If you think of a person as your topic – remember that a National History Day project is more than a biography. You will have to narrow your focus on that person to something significant connected to him or her.Wisconsin: McCarthy was a U.S. Senator from Appleton with military experience as an intelligence officer during World War II. While serving in the Senate, he began an anti-communist campaign against public figures in the U.S. that played on the country’s Cold War fears and eventually ruined the reputation of many of those he accused. When his accusations moved to federal employees, he was censured. McCarthy was one example of reaction to communism. What were the short and long-term consequences to the reforms he proposed? How did it change the lives of those involved and the nation as a whole? United States: Abraham Lincoln did many significant things during his life and presidency. Consider focusing on just one of his revolutionary actions – like the Emancipation Proclamation of 1863. This stated "that all persons held as slaves" within the rebellious states "are, and henceforward shall be free." This revolutionary speech did not end slavery, but in the reactions of many this proclamation changed the meaning of the Civil War.
Wisconsin: In the early years of World War II, the Manitowoc Shipbuilding Company became the only inland U.S. shipyard to construct submarines. The company eventually constructed 28 vessels for the Navy. What changes in technology did Manitowoc have to develop in order to build submarines on Lake Michigan? How did the government contract for these ships change the company, the workforce, and the community? United States: The bombing of Pearl Harbor immediately changed American opinions on World War II, bringing the United States officially into the conflict. Reactions to this event were harsh and immediate for Japanese Americans as fear spread in the United States. Executive Order 9066 took many Japanese Americans out of their homes and places them in internment camps, often at great personal loss of property. How did reactions to Executive Order 9066 differ? What were the short and long-term results of this policy?
Wisconsin: Stephen Babcock invented a test that determined the butterfat content in milk. Knowing the quality of each batch of milk revolutionized the dairy industry. What reforms in the dairy industry followed this invention?United States: in 1793 Eli Whitney’s Cotton Gin revolutionized the labor-intensive process of separating seeds from cotton fibers. For cotton-producing landowners, this invention reformed cotton agriculture – making it much more profitable. Not all saw this reaction as a positive, however. As production of cotton soared and spread into new areas, so did slavery as the labor to power this growth.
Wisconsin: Robert M. LaFollette’s support for Progressive reforms, rousing oratory, and frequent clashes with party leaders earned him the nickname “Fighting Bob.” He supported measures that doubled the taxes on railroads, broke up monopolies, preserved the state’s forests, protected worker’s rights, defended small farmers, and regulated lobbying to end patronage politics. Take a closer look at any one of these revolutionary ideas or policies. What was the historical context for the development of the reform? What impact did this one man’s ideas have on progressive politics in the early 20th century? United States: The Boston Tea Party was about much more than just the price of tea. There was already a tense relationship between the colonies and Britain and the Tea Act was another reform that was viewed very differently on opposite sides of the Atlantic. Why did some colonists react so strongly? How did this reform fit into previous actions of the British?
United States: The Suffrage Movement was a revolution in women’s rights – but that’s going to be too big a topic for the scope of an NHD project. Consider looking at one particular event, person, or idea. Alice Paul, for example, and her supporters employed new tactics – such as picketing the President and hunger strikes – in their quest to reform the suffrage movement and gain women the right to vote.
Wisconsin: Harley-Davidson produced the first motorcycle with founders and friends William Harley and Arthur Davidson in the early 1900s. After their first model was built in 1903, the company saw increased demand for their machine with the unique V-twin shaped engine. How was this machine a revolution in transportation? United States: Henry Ford’s introduction of the assembly line revolutionized the industry, drastically decreasing the amount of time it took to build a car. This allowed him to slash prices and made the car more popular than ever. Think about both the positive and negative aspects of this reform: How did it change the experiences of workers building the cars? How did it change issues of transportation the country?
United States: Beginning in 1889, Jane Addams and others at Hull House worked to improve the conditions of life for immigrants and the poor in Chicago by helping them to help themselves. They established services to solve economic problems – a nursery and employment help – as well cultural enrichment – lectures and social clubs. How did Hull House establish a model for reform that was used all across the country? How were these women reacting to the traditional roles that others may have expected of them?
Pop culture topics can be effective for NHD projects – but you have to treat these topics as historical research topics. You still need to do good research and make an argument about the significance of the topic in history. Wisconsin: A successful project on the Packers needs to do more than list the statistics of your favorite players. Examine a bigger issue connected with the team. For example, the Packers are the only publicly-owned NFL team. How and why did this revolutionary structure come into place? What has been the long and short term reaction of the NFL? How did this change the relationship between the team and the community?United States: A project on Elvis should do more than just list his popular songs. Examine the larger significance of “The King” in history. Consider looking at his music as a revolutionary combination of styles. Consider examining how Elvis and other musicians at the time revolutionized youth culture. How did the reactions of teenagers differ from parents in response to his music?
The Annual Theme<br />
Types of Projects <br />Historical Exhibit<br />Historical Documentary <br />Historical Performance (may be a group)<br />Historical Paper<br />Historical Web Site<br />
The Annual Theme<br />Annual theme applies to everyone<br />Topics must connect to annual theme<br />Think about it: How does the theme connect to the argument that you are making about your topic?<br />
Revolution<br />Define: Revolution<br />Revolution: Overthrow of one government and replacement with another. Dramatic and wide-reaching change.<br /> WHS Image ID: 2038<br />WHS Image ID: 84494<br />
Reaction<br />Define: Reaction<br /><ul><li>Reaction: Response. Reactions can be words, actions, or changes in a way of thinking.</li></ul>WHS Image ID: 32538<br />
Reform<br />Define: Reform<br /><ul><li>Reform: To change.
Remember: Not all reforms were positive for everyone involved. The impact of a reform may change over time.</li></ul>WHS Image ID: 5587<br />
Revolution, Reaction, Reform<br />The ideas of revolution, reaction, and reform work together<br />Look for connections to all three aspects of the theme in your topic<br />All three theme words do not need to be equally addressed in your project<br />
In History<br />You need to look at the significance of your topic over time<br />Topics should not be current events<br />In general, try to base topics on events that took place at least 20 years ago<br />WHS Image ID: 41644<br />
Selecting a Topic<br />One of the most important decisions you’ll make for National History Day!<br />
HUGE Variety of Possible Topics<br />Brainstorm! Don’t stop with just your first idea. <br />Revolution, reaction, and reform can be found in all areas of history<br />Think about the relationship between the topic and the events that came before and after it:<br />Why did it happen?<br />What impact did it have?<br />
Sample Topics<br />These topics are not the only ones out there<br />Just a few ideas from many areas of history<br />Where can you find more ideas?<br />Think about your interests<br />Talk to your teacher, parents, classmates<br />Look through your textbook<br />Visit the library or a museum<br />
Narrowing Topics<br />Take a big idea and narrow it to a manageable size for National History Day<br />
Science and Technology<br />WHS Image ID: 2343<br />WHS Image ID: 8530<br />Cyrus McCormick Revolutionizes Agriculture<br />Polio, the Vaccine, and the March of Dimes<br />
Social Issues<br />WHS Image ID: 45437<br />WHS Image ID: 54625<br />Ada Deer and Menominee Tribal Restoration<br />Child Labor during the Industrial Revolution<br />
Communication<br />Harper’s Weekly October21, 1871<br />The Political Cartoons of Thomas Nast<br />
Education<br />6<br />The Little Rock Nine and School Desegregation<br />
Arts, Literature & Music<br />WHS Image ID: 3855<br />WHS Image ID: 41270<br />Frank Lloyd Wright and Organic Architecture<br />WHS Image ID: 1921<br />Les Paul and the Electric Guitar<br />
Labor Movement<br />WHS Image ID: 2038<br />Cornell University<br />The Milk Strikes and the Great Depression<br />The Triangle Shirtwaist Factory Fire and Workers’ Safety<br />
Environment<br />NOAA<br />WHS Image ID: 48103<br />Gaylord Nelson and Earth Day<br />Rachel Carson and Silent Spring<br />
Famous People<br />WHS Image ID: 23664<br />WHS Image ID: 48220<br />Abraham Lincoln and the Emancipation Proclamation<br />Joseph McCarthy’s Campaign Against Communism<br />
Military History & Wartime<br />Library of Congress: LC-USZ62-24654<br />WHS Image ID: 64627<br />Manitowoc Submarines and World War II<br />Japanese American Internment During World War II<br />
Agriculture<br />Stephen Babcock: WHS Image ID: 5585<br />Patent for Cotton Gin: National Archives<br />Stephen Babcock and the Butterfat Tester<br />Eli Whitney's Cotton Gin<br />
Politics and Government<br />WHS Image ID: 5587<br />Library of Congress: LC-USZC4-1582<br />Fighting Bob’s Progressive Reforms<br />The Boston Tea Party<br />
Social Issues<br />Library of Congress: LC-DIG-ds-00180<br />Alice Paul and the Women’s Suffrage Movement<br />
Transportation<br />Library of Congress: LC-D420-2659<br />WHS Image ID: 2544<br />Henry Ford and the Assembly Line<br />Harley-DavidsonMotorcycles<br />
Women in History <br />The Nation’s First Settlement House: Hull House in Chicago <br />
Pop Culture<br />Library of Congress: LC-USZ6-2067 <br />WHS Image ID: 81759<br />The Green Bay Packers<br />Elvis Presley<br />