This year, the group plans to create a video documentary for the competition about some of Mount Airy’s previous residents. Starting in October, the youth began visiting cemeteries in the area with Glenda Edwards, who is heading up the chapter, and her husband Matt, the executive director of the Mount Airy Museum of Regional History. In each cemetery, they explored tombstones and listened to stories about some of the people buried there.
“Cemeteries have an important place in the historical research process,” said Matt Edwards during the initial meeting which took place at the old Methodist cemetery off South Main Street.
During each visit, the junior historians made note of interesting names which they used to do research and find out more about the families of Mount Airy. They consulted books on the history of Surry County, old records and even some of the exhibits at the museum to find out as much information as possible as well as locate pictures.
On Thursday, the group met in the museum’s library to begin compiling its information to be ready to start the filming process at the beginning of February. According to the regulations for the state competition, the youth have to write a script for and film a video not to exceed 10 minutes. Last year’s team won first place for producing a booklet on the founding families of Mount Airy so this year’s team has been challenged to do well also.
“Last year’s team won an award so you have to do a really good job to keep up the tradition,” said Glenda Edwards.
The junior historians have chosen a variety of individuals to research and spent time on Thursday deciding what information to include, what costumes or props they would need for filming and where they may want to film each segment. They have researched doctors, firefighters, soldiers and even a 5-year-old girl, the daughter of Robert Richard Galloway, who died on Halloween. Some of the participants even took tours of some of the museums exhibits to get costume ideas or scout out possible filming locations.
“Today, I want you to write down the three most important things about your group or person. Think about where you might want to film and come up with a list of costumes and props,” Glenda Edwards instructed.
The Tar Heel Junior Historian Association started in 1953 as a way to encourage youth to student state and local history. It is open to students in grades four through 12. The annual state competition is a chance for chapters to showcase either individual or group work completed during that year to showcase an area of North Carolina’s history.
Contact Morgan Wall at email@example.com or 719-1929.