Triumph & Tragedy in History


Every year National History Day® frames students’ research within a historical theme. The theme is chosen for the broad application to world, national, or state history and its relevance to ancient history or to the more recent past. The 2018-2019 theme is Triumph & Tragedy in History. The intentional selection of the theme for NHD is to provide an opportunity for students to push past the antiquated view of history as mere facts and dates and drill down into historical content to develop perspective and understanding.

To enter the National History Day Contest start by reading the Creating a Project page and contacting your State/Affiliate Coordinator to inquire about entering at the local or school level of your contest. The top two entries in each category at the Affiliate Contest level will be invited to the National Contest. The National Contest will be held June 9-13, 2019 at the University of Maryland, College Park.


Helpful Links

Creating a Project

Student Resources

Project Categories

Project Examples



See past annual themes.

2019 Contest Theme Book

Download the Triumph & Tragedy in History theme book.