Contact: Kara O’Keeffe
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Madison, Wis. – The Wisconsin Historical Society which hosts the National History Day in Wisconsin program announced that the 2019 theme is “Triumph and Tragedy in History.”

“Each year National History Day selects a theme that is intentionally broad enough so that students participating can select a topic from anywhere in the world and any time period,” said Jenny Kalvaitis, coordinator of secondary education at the Wisconsin Historical Society. “This year’s theme is complex and students will need to look at multiple perspectives within the theme as they begin their topic research. We are very excited to help students explore this theme with a number of brand new resources on our recently re-designed website.”

Beginning in the fall, students choose a topic related to the annual theme. Once students choose their topic, they investigate historical context, historical significance, and the topic’s relationship to the theme by conducting research in libraries, archives, and museums; through oral history interviews; and by visiting historic sites.

After analyzing and interpreting sources and drawing conclusions about their topics’ significance in history, students present their work in original papers, exhibits, performances, websites, or documentaries. These projects are entered into competitions in the spring at local, state and national levels, where they are evaluated by professional historians and educators. The program culminates at the national competition held each June at the University of Maryland at College Park.

Wisconsin will host 8 regional events throughout the state beginning in February with the Madison area Regional, followed by Green Bay.

National History in Wisconsin is part of a national program that engages history teachers and students from across the country.

For more information on the National History Day program, visit

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