DAR announces essay contest winners

Tessa Werne

The Daughters of the American Revolution, Dubois County Chapter, American History Essay Contest was established to encourage young people to think creatively about the nation’s history and learn about history in a new light.

Each academic year an essay topic is chosen and guidelines are made available to students in grades five through eight. The topic for the 2019-20 year was “The Voyage of the Mayflower.” This year marks the 400th anniversary of the voyage and the founding of Plymouth Colony on Nov. 9, 1620.

The students were asked to imagine that they were one of the passengers on the Mayflower. Knowing what materials were available in 1620, they were asked what they would pack to prepare for the trip and to start a new life in the wilderness. 

A winner from Dubois County was selected from each of the four grades to advance to the state level. The state winner advances to the divisional contest and the divisional winner to national contest. In addition, the Dubois County Chapter of the DAR selected a winner from each school in the county. The students will receive a medal and a certificate from the DAR.

Students advancing to the state level were Tessa Werne, grade five at Holy Trinity School; Olivia Rasche, grade six at Southridge Middle School; Tori Hemmerlein, grade seven at Jasper Middle School; and Maddie Gaug, grade eight at Jasper Middle School.

Tessa Werne placed second at the state level.

The county winners from each participating Dubois County school will receive a certificate from the DAR.

Winners in grade five were Jillian Mathies, Cedar Crest Intermediate School; Tessa Werne, Holy Trinity  School; and Ellie Gaug, Tenth Street School.

Grade six winners were Megan Steinmetz, Cedar Crest Intermediate School; Andyn Lambert, Jasper Middle School; and Olivia Rasche, Southridge Middle School.

Maddie Gaug from Jasper Middle School was the eighth-grade winner.

The topic for the coming year is “The Boston Massacre.”


The Voyage of the Mayflower

By Tessa Werne

September 6, 1620 2:50

Today is the big day. My name is Elizabith and I’m going on the Mayflower. I’ll be taking my diary to write my thoughts and emotions. I’m taking my dogs, a spaniel and a mastiff, along with my bags. I have packed clothes, washcloths, and blankets in case it’s cold. I’ve heard it will be stinky, cramped, and unpleasant. But I don’t care. The ticket was very expensive but I can afford it. I will miss my friends and family greatly, but I’m ready to praise God.

The Mayflower just cast off about an hour ago. I heard that we had to bring our own food so I brought some dried meat, dried fish, dried fruit, and cheese. There are about one hundred two people on the Mayflower which makes it incredibly stinky. We have several lanterns and candles on the ship to make it brighter. It is very hard to sleep on this ship because of all the swaying back and forth. We aren’t even half way and I’m already sick of it.

October 29, 1620 11:30

We’ve been on the Mayflower a couple of weeks now. One man died yesterday. His name was William Burton. We are having storms more often and we have to stay below deck. It is also even more impossible to sleep because of the storms and their booming thunder. I am writing in my diary until I’m tired from now on so I can fall asleep even though there is rain and thunder. The bathrooms are chamber pots and the only privacy we have is curtains. My dog’s have found some children they like to play with when it is not raining. The captain is getting a little worried now. I am getting tired now so I might as well try to go to bed.

November 1, 1620 2:45

We’re almost there! We’re almost to Cape Cod. We named it Cape Cod because there were a lot of codfish to catch.They said a team will go out and explore it before everyone else does. The only thing we have to worry about now is all the sick people on the ship. There was a baby born yesterday. His parents named him Oceanus Hopkins. Only one person died this whole trip and there was one baby born making us get there with one hundred two people like we set off with. The next time I write we will probably be in Cape Cod. Until then.

November 6, 1620 6:00

We’re in Cape Cod and some men are rowing out in canoes to explore it as I write. Everyone else is staying behind in case it’s dangerous. They said they will be back no later than after supper unless something goes wrong. If it is safe, we will all go on to Cape Cod. If it is not then we will try to find a different place. I see the canoes already boarding the ship. They told us now that the soil is terrible and we will not be able to stay here. I will write when we have found good land.

November 9, 1620 3:00

We have finally found good land with good soil. We all took care of the sick while the men went to explore. If I was packing today, I would have brought some herbs, more clothes, and more blankets for the cold nights. Now we are starting to farm the land. It will be very hard but we will be strong and fight this battle with God.

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