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Learn about the Civil War in Virginia this summer…Be a VHS High School Historian!


2011 Virginia Historical Society High School Historians Forum

The Virginia Historical Society will hold the High School Historians Forum (formerly the Wyndham B. Blanton Scholars Forum) from July 20–23, 2011!

In honor of Virginia’s sesquicentennial commemoration of the Civil War, this summer’s Forum will focus on “The Civil War in Virginia.” During the program, students will immerse themselves in the study of Civil War–era topics, particularly those topics and perspectives that might not be well covered in traditional study of the period. Over the course of four days, VHS staff and visiting speakers will engage students in an exploration of the Civil War’s influence on Virginia and its inhabitants.

While in Richmond, students will go behind the scenes at the VHS to observe the Society’s daily operations, follow a “Civil War in Richmond” tour, led by Andrew Talkov, Exhibition Coordinator for the VHS’s An American Turning Point: Virginia and the Civil War,  and also create video content for the Society’s website. Living history interpreters will be on hand to deepen participants’ understanding of the varied experiences of Virginians during the war, specifically the involvement of women on the home front in Virginia, and the diverse roles of African Americans in both the Confederate and Union armies who fought in the Commonwealth.

Overnight accommodations for the Forum have been arranged at Virginia Commonwealth University dorms. Students will be chaperoned by VHS staff members at all times, with meal expenses fully covered by the VHS.

If you are interested in participating in the Forum, you can apply online. Applications must be received no later than June 10. All rising juniors and seniors from Virginia are encouraged to apply.

The program is a fantastic opportunity to collaborate with some of the best students from across Virginia, and to work directly with professionals in the history field. Whether you’re a Civil War buff, a history nut, or a just fan of museums, we’d love to have you join us for this year’s Forum!

But don’t take it from us – here are some comments from last year’s participants about the Forum!

“Absolutely amazing – felt like I was surrounded by people that had the same interests and I realized just how much I enjoy learning about the history of VA.”

“I really enjoyed the Forum, and everyone was amazing, fun, and nice. The related tours made the program very interesting!”

“I didn’t just learn a lot these past few days, I had a blast as well. You all made the experience great.”

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Jennifer Nesossis is the programs officer at the Virginia Historical Society.

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