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SAR Youth Contests and Awards

George S. & Stella M. Knight Essay Contest

The National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) invites all high school students (9th through 12th grades) interested in the American Revolution to participate in the George S. & Stella M. Knight Essay Contest. The contest is open to all students attending home schools, public, parochial, or private high schools in that same grade range. The National Association of Secondary School Principals has placed this program on the 2017-18 NASSP List of Approved Contests, Programs, and Activities for Students.

To participate, students must submit an original 800- to 1,200-word essay based on an event, person, philosophy or ideal associated with the American Revolution, Declaration of Independence, or the framing of the United States Constitution. Each student’s essay will be judged based upon its historical accuracy, clarity, organization, grammar and spelling, and documentation.

The contest is conducted in three phases: the local chapter, state-level society, and national phases. The contest must be entered through an SAR chapter near the student’s residence. In some cases, the contest may be entered at the state level (if the local society does not have chapters or the chapters are not participating) and a contact-at-large should be used to find out more contest details. The list of contest contacts listed below can provide you with assistance in entering the Knight Essay Contest. Only one entry per student is permitted per contest year.

A complete set of rules, along with the application for both the applicant and the sponsoring SAR members, can be found below. Please be aware that the local application deadline dates may vary, so interested applicants should reach out to their local SAR member listed below for further details.

George S. & Stella M. Knight Essay Contest Rules

George S. & Stella M. Knight Essay Application Form


The current George S. & Stella M. Knight Essay Contest Judge-at-Large is Mr. Christopher Smithson (ctsmithson@gmail.com).

SAR SocietyKnight Essay Contest Contact
Alabama SARMichael C. Wells
Alaska SARThomas J. Rollman
Arkansas SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Arizona SARDavid Rodier
California SARKevin A. Tierney
Colorado SARChristopher Smithson
Connecticut SARJohn R. Morgan
Dakota SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Delaware SARDavid E. Schrader
District of Columbia SARBrock D. Bierman
Empire State SAR (New York)James M. Eagan
Florida SARJohn M. Stewart
1121 32nd Avenue North
Saint Petersburg, FL 33704
Georgia SARTerry A. Gibbs
Hawaii SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Idaho SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Illinois SARGary R. List
Indiana SART. Rex Legler II
International SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Iowa SARDoug Frazer
Kansas SARStuart W. Conrad
Kentucky SARDon D. Adams
312 Pleasant Street
Paris, KY 40361-2035
Louisiana SARArthur F. Schafer
Maine SARDavid L. Manchester
Maryland SARC. Louis Raborg, Jr.
Massachusetts SARDavid E. Schrader
Michigan SARWilliam G. Vette
Minnesota SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Mississippi SARGerald P. Brent
Missouri SARDale A. Schmidt
Montana SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Nebraska SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Nevada SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
New Hampshire SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
New Jersey SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
New Mexico SARKevin Carr
North Carolina SARStephen A. Morris
Ohio SARDonald C. McGraw, Jr.
8380 Shawnee Run Road
Cincinnati, OH 45243-3359
Oklahoma SARRonald W. Painter
Oregon SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Pennsylvania SARJ. Rennick Steele, Jr.
Rhode Island SARRobert B. Baxter
South Carolina SARGlenn V. Ohanesian
Tennessee SARGeorge E. Pesely
Texas SARJohn M. Hamlin
Utah SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com
Vermont SARZachariah L. Fike
Virginia SARRichard M. Sherman
Washington SARDr. Keith Weissinger
West Virginia SARThomas J. Galloway
P.O. Box 697
Huntington, WV 25711-0697
Wisconsin SARThomas P. Curtis II
Wyoming SARChristopher Smithson ctsmithson@gmail.com

Previous Winners

The George S. and Stella M. Knight Essay Contest Committee is proud to announce the winner of the national contest. Each year, the SAR receives an average of thirty state-level winners from around the country to compete in the national-level contest. Visitors can find a list of the previous George S. & Stella M. Knight Essay Contest national winners below.

YearWinning EssayistSponsoring SAR Society
2016Joseph NusbaumFlorida SAR
2015Matthew PenzaConnecticut SAR
2014Elizabeth LillyVirginia SAR
2013Bryan HabashiVirginia SAR
2012Katie LavenderVirginia SAR
2011Amanda SchanzVirginia SAR
2010Cody E. NagerEmpire State SAR
2009Hayley SchoepplerWisconsin SAR
2008Jenna BarkerSouth Carolina SAR
2007Derek McMahanKentucky SAR
2006Kristin PersoniusTexas SAR
2005H. Curtis KuntzPennsylvania SAR
2004Daniel E. Sigler
Empire State SAR
2003Daniel E. SiglerGeorgia SAR
2002Nathan W. SkellyMissouri SAR
2001Stephanie CondonCalifornia SAR
2000Jenna DonderoTexas SAR
1999Courtney PowellVirginia SAR
1998Kimberly BraunDelaware SAR
1997John RacksonMaryland SAR
1996Justin JaeckWisconsin SAR
1995Catherine ClaytonTexas SAR

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