Local DAR chapter recognizes award winners
Students recognized for American history essay, junior citizens contests
The Port Tobacco chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution recognized more than 140 Charles County students who placed in the DAR’s annual American History Essay Contest and Junior American Citizens Contest.
“It’s pretty impressive the work that is being done by our students in this county,” said Peter Murphy (D), president of the Charles County Board of Commissioners, during an awards ceremony held Saturday at the Maryland Veterans Memorial Museum in Newburg.
The NSDAR is a nonprofit organization composed of women who can prove descent from an individual who fought for independence in the American Revolution and exists as a volunteer women’s service organization “dedicated to promoting patriotism, preserving American history, and securing America’s future through better education for children,” according to the national organization’s website.
The NSDAR sponsors annual American History Essay contests and Junior American Citizens contests at the local, state, regional and national chapters.
The essay contest, open to private, public and homeschool students grades 5-8, recognized the 250th anniversary of the British Stamp Act, which required colonists, who had no representation in the British Parliament, to pay a tax on every piece of paper used.
“The Stamp Act was viewed as ‘taxation without representation’ by the colonists,” said Victoria Kelly, DAR Port Tobacco chapter chairwoman. “Students were challenged with writing an essay describing a colonial family’s reaction to the Stamp Act and what role it played in the American Revolution.”
The Junior American Citizens Contest is open to students in grades 1-12 to produce works of art (banner, stamp design, poster and photo essay), creative expression (poetry and short story) or community service based on a different theme each year. This year’s theme was “Celebrate America,” and 333 submissions were received, Kelly said.
Kelly said that winners used to be recognized at the state DAR conference, but due to the number of Charles County participants, it was decided to hold a local awards ceremony beginning in 2013.
“There were so many submissions from the Port Tobacco chapter that you kind of outnumbered the submissions from kids in the rest of the states,” said Carol Larkin, regent of the Maryland DAR chapter.
Many of the students who placed first in the Port Tobacco competition have gone on to compete in the state competition, and in the case of the Junior American Citizens Contest, the regional and national levels as well.
The Port Tobacco Chapter of the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution recognized Charles County American History Contest and Junior American Citizens Contest winners Saturday at the Maryland Veterans Memorial Musuem in Newburg.