The Historical Museum presents our 9th Annual Essay Contest…

“Breaking Barriers in History”

One winner from each of the following grade levels (6-8 & 9-12) will receive a $200 prize and a collection of books for their class! Sponsored by the DeVore Family Fund.

Contest Rules: 

  • All Sedgwick County students in grades 6-12 in a public, private, or parochial school, or those who are home schooled are eligible.
  • The topic must be focused on Wichita and/or Sedgwick County history.
  • The entire essay must be the student’s original work.
  • Entries must be 300-600 words in length.
  • Any essay with information copied directly from sources without use of quotation marks and cited resource will be disqualified.


  • The essay is to be handwritten in ink, typed, or prepared on a computer word processor, using black type in a non-script font no smaller than 12 point or larger than 14 point.
  • Please include a Title Page with the following information:
    • Title of the essay
    • Contestant’s full name and age
    • Contestant’s complete mailing address
    • Telephone number
    • Email address (if available)
    • Name of contestant’s school with grade level indicated
  • Essays must have a bibliography listing all references utilized. Internet resources, if used, should be cited in similar format, along with the web address used to access the document online.

Contest Parameters:

  • Entries may be turned in at the Historical Museum front desk or mailed to the Historical Museum at the following address:
    • 204 S. Main Wichita, Kansas 67202
  • Entries must be received by March 31, 2020
  • Essays will be judged on historical accuracy, originality, content, adherence to theme, organization of material, spelling, and grammar.


National History Day Contest:

Every year National History Day® frames students’ research within a historical theme. The theme is chosen for the broad application to world, national, or state history and its relevance to ancient history or to the more recent past. The 2019-2020 theme is Breaking Barriers in History.

To enter the National History Day Contest start by reading the Creating a Project page and contacting your State/Affiliate Coordinator to inquire about entering at the local or school level of your contest. The top two entries in each category at the Affiliate Contest level will be invited to the National Contest. The National Contest will be held June 14-18, 2020 at the University of Maryland, College Park.

© Wichita-Sedgwick County Historical Museum