Skip menu to read main page content

National History Day

With over 7 million documents and 10 exhibitions on Maryland history, the Maryland Center for History and Culture is the perfect place to research your National History Day project.

Researching Your Topic at the MCHC

Finding sources for your National History Day project can be challenging. The Maryland Center for History and Culture wants to make it easier. Watch the video and read the guide below to learn more about researching at the MCHC.

Follow these steps to begin your research:

  1. Explore the Library Catalog and gather information on documents you want to see.
  2. Make an appointment using the Special Collections Appointment Request form.
  3. On the day of your appointment, complete a registration form and pay the $6 admission fee (this cost includes museum admission).
  4. Before you enter the library, put away your backpack and any food or drinks in the free lockers. You may only bring a pencil and a notebook, computer or tablet into the library.
  5. When you enter the library, an MCHC staff member will have you sign in.
  6. Find a table and let the staff member know what item you want to look at first.
  7. When you are done looking at an item, let a staff member know, and they will come and take the box from you and give you your next item.
  8. After researching, make sure you sign out at the library front desk.

Need Help Picking a Topic?

Attend a Saturday Workshop

National History Day topics workshops take place every year at the Maryland Center for History and Culture where professional researchers teach students how to identify a topic, write a thesis, and find and use primary sources. The dates for upcoming workshops in fall 2020 will be announced soon. In the meantime, check out some example topics below!

Examples of Maryland Topics

  • Colonial and Revolutionary Era
    • Native American Efforts to Preserve Land and Culture
    • Protestant Revolution of 1689: Puritan and Catholic Conflict
    • Anthony Stewart and Maryland’s Tea Party Protest
  • Early National and Antebellum Era
    • Creation of the Telegraph by Samuel Morse
    • The Baltimore and Ohio Railroad
    • Harriet Tubman and the Underground Railroad
  • Civil War and Reconstruction
    • Spying During the Civil War
    • Letters from the Battlefield: Communication During the Civil War
    • African American Male Suffrage After the Civil War
    • African American Education Following the Civil War
  • The Gilded Age and Progressive Era
    • The B&O Railroad Strike of 1877
    • The Women’s Suffrage Movement in Maryland
    • The Oyster Wars
  • The Civil Rights Movement to the Modern Era
    • Thurgood Marshall and the School Desegregation Efforts in Maryland’s Public Schools
    • NAACP: The Campaign to Integrate Ford’s Theatre in Baltimore
    • Activism and Protest During the Vietnam War


Have a Question?

Call 410-685-3750, ext. 334, or email alothstein@mdhistory.org.