The National History Club Inc. (NHC) inspires students and teachers to start History Club chapters at high schools, middle schools, and within other student and community programs. Members of local History Club chapters participate in local and national programs, and create their own projects and activities. The NHC also provides chapters with resources and services that will help them increase the activity and impact of their History Club. To date, 550+ History Club chapters at high schools and middle schools in 44 states have joined the NHC, and there are over 16,000 student members. Schools are free to decide whether their chapter will be a regular History Club or a History Honor Society.
The National History Club was founded in 2002 by The Concord Review Inc. (TCR), which publishes the only scholarly review of history essays written by secondary students. In October 2006, The Concord Review (TCR) board of directors voted to establish the NHC as an independent affiliate to accommodate its rapid growth.
The NHC was awarded a seed and planning grant from the Argosy Foundation in the fall of 2006.
ABOUT THE FOUNDER
William Hughes Fitzhugh was born in Boston and grew up in Tucson, Arizona, and after high school in California, came to Harvard College. There, and after that at Cambridge University, he formed a strong admiration for the scholars he had seen and heard. Some years later, while teaching history at the public high school in Concord, Massachusetts, he came to admire the academic efforts of some of his students, many of whose peers had no interest in academics at all.
He founded The Concord Review in 1987, to recognize and celebrate serious academic high school history research papers, and to publish them for teachers to use and to allow students to see what their peers had shown they could do. More than 1,000 high school students from 34 countries have now been published in this unique journal.
In 2002, a teacher suggested that he start a National History Honor Society, but after a few months, he decided that the new National History Club should be open to any high school student (and later middle school students) who had an interest in history. The plan was to encourage students to read, write, discuss, and enjoy history in any way they chose. There are now more than 500+ chapters with more than 16,000 members in 44 states, and members have shown that they have all sorts of good and useful ways to follow their interest in history.
History is the only topic taught in every secondary school that can engage students of any interest in understanding and tackling human problems in the real world. In history there is truly something for everyone. History is political, social, economic, military, athletic, scientific, religious, and mathematical.
History can be as contemporary as yesterday and as ancient as Mesopotamia, as near as the city one lives in and as far away as Andromeda. History can be seen and touched, read and written, made and remembered. Everyone is a part of history.
Most importantly, the study of history builds the critical skills students need to become responsible citizens and effective leaders. Researching and discovering new information, as well as reading, synthesizing, and communicating that information effectively: these are the skills that make someone successful in business, civic life, and even science.
THE PRESSING ISSUE
Yet, the study of History is declining in secondary schools. A 2014 Civics Assessment administered by the National Assessment of Educational Progress displayed the lack of proper understanding of civics among students in our secondary schools. Among some of the key findings:
Fewer than half of American eighth graders knew the purpose of the Bill of Rights.
Only one in 10 eighth graders demonstrated acceptable knowledge of the checks and balances among the legislative, executive, and judicial branches.
Three-quarters of high school seniors were unable to name a power granted to Congress by the Constitution.
We are taking action to make the study of history a more important part of every student’s secondary school education.
MEET OUR TEAM
NHC Staff - Robert Nasson, Executive Director
NHC Student Advisor - Ishwar Mukherjee
* John Abele, Boston Scientific Corporation
* Greg Boyle, UBS
* Will Fitzhugh, The Concord Review
* Charles Aulino, Glenmede Trust Company
* Lindsay Brown, St. Andrew's School (DE)
* Colin Kloster, Fargo North High School (ND)
* Kevin Cline, Frankton High School (IN)
* Andrew Demko, Rainier High School (OR)
* John Garner, Newnan High School (GA)
* Bob Hines, Richard Montgomery High School (MD)
* Mark Laskowski, Ravenscroft School (NC)
* Charlie Newhall, St. John's Preparatory School (MA)
* Lindy Poling, College of William & Mary, Millbrook High School
* Mark Sweeney, Cactus Shadows High School (AZ)