After months of intensive research and successes at local and regional-level competitions, more than 300 students from across Tennessee will compete at the annual Tennessee History Day (THD) competition on April 13 in downtown Nashville.

“We are delighted to welcome this outstanding group of students to Tennessee History Day,” said Ann Toplovich, executive director of the Tennessee Historical Society. “Approximately 8,300 students in grades 6-12 participated this year. To qualify for the state contest shows great creativity, initiative, and scholarship.”

Winners from the state contest will advance to National History Day (NHD) and present their history projects June 9-13 in College Park, Md. There they will showcase their hard work and compete for awards and scholarships at the national level.

The NHD program annually engages more than a half million students in grades 6-12 from all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Guam, American Samoa, and Department of Defense Schools. Each fall students and teachers nationwide begin the year-long National History Day program and go on to compete in a series of contests in their local communities and states. The top students in each category are selected to participate in the national contest.

In Tennessee, regional competitions take place in Greeneville (Tusculum College), Knoxville (East Tennessee Historical Society and the University of Tennessee), Nashville (Tennessee State University), Murfreesboro (Middle Tennessee State University), and Memphis (University of Memphis). The state competition is held in Nashville at the State Capitol complex and is sponsored by the non-profit Tennessee Historical Society, with grant support from the Tennessee Secretary of State’s Office and Humanities Tennessee.

“It’s a great weekend for Tennessee history as we welcome the regional winners to Nashville to compete in the state contest”, Secretary of State Tre Hargett said. “The program challenges students to discover history themselves. I’m inspired to see Tennessee students become more knowledgable in our state’s rich and diverse history.”

More than just a day, Tennessee History Day is a year-round program that allows participating students to learn by researching their own topics using primary source documents. Each year, all research topics are based on a specific theme. This year’s theme is “Triumph and Tragedy in History.” While all projects must relate to the annual theme, students are encouraged to be creative in their execution. Students present their work in a variety of ways by creating exhibits, documentaries, performances, websites or papers.

For more information about the Tennessee History Day program or the program’s state affiliate, the Tennessee Historical Society, visit the website at or contact Jennifer Core at (615) 741-8934 or by email at