An essay contest sponsored by the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution has helped Decorah Middle School students get a better idea of past events in American history. Decorah's Hannah Lee Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution sponsored the contest.
Middle School students were asked to describe how they might have felt on May 10, 1869, when the golden spike was driven at Promontory Summit, Utah, to celebrate the completion of the First Transcontinental Railroad. They could write from the point of view of a settler planning to use the train to travel to a new home in the West, an Irish or Chinese worker who helped to build the line, or a native American whose way of life was greatly affected by the railroad.
The essays were judged by three people. They selected an essay written by middle school student Helen Johnson to be sent on to the state level of the contest.