New London Maritime Society Offers Scholarships For Local Students

Students are invited to apply for the Reid MacCluggage Black Maritime History Award by writing an essay, poem, short story, novella, play, or script based on the American American experience in the maritime world.

New London Custom House Maritime Museum has a historical connection to the Amistad.
New London Custom House Maritime Museum has a historical connection to the Amistad.
Could you use a hand paying for college? 

The New London Maritime Society has a scholarship for $1,000 available for juniors and seniors in good standing at one of the following high schools: East Lyme, Grasso Tech., Fisher's Island, Fitch, Griswold, Ledyard, Lyme-Old Lyme, Montville, New London, NFA, Norwich Regional Tech., St. Bernard's, Stonington, Williams School, Waterford, Wheeler. But to earn it you have to get a little creative. 

Applicants must write an an original essay, short story, novella, play, movie script or poem based on the theme: the African-American experience in the maritime world. There are no restrictions on the length or scope of entries, but they must be typed and include a complete list of all primary and secondary research sources. Additionally, each entry must be accompanied by a cover page, stating the student's name, address and telephone number, as well as the name of the high school he or she attends, and a brief abstract describing the intent/content of the piece.

All entries must be received at the Custom House Maritime Museum, 150 Bank Street, New London, CT  06320, by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, February 28, 2014. Mailed entries must be postmarked no later than February 28.

Entries will be reviewed and judged, with the top scholarship of $1,000 going to the most outstanding entry. There is a scholarship of $500 for second place. The winners will be contacted directly, and will receive the awards at his or her high school awards night. If you have any questions, please contact Susan at the Custom House Maritime Museum, 860-447-2501 or email her atnlmaritimedirector@gmail.com.

Students are invited to start their research at the New London Maritime Society's Frank L. McGuire Maritime Research Library, which contains books and manuscripts on topics related to black maritime history, the Amistad incident, and many aspects of local maritime history. Please call 860-447-2501 to make a reservation to work in the NLMS library. 

In 1839, New London and its U.S. Custom House, now the Custom House Maritime Museum, played a small but significant role in the abolition of slavery in the United States—in particular, in the story of the Amistad. The Custom House offers a permanent exhibition Amistad: A True Story of Freedom and is both a Connecticut Freedom Trail site and one of two Connecticut sites on the national Underground Railroad Network to Freedom.

The Reid MacCluggage Black Maritime History Award was established to foster an awareness of the experience of African-Americans in the context of maritime history. It honors the commitment of Reid MacCluggage, the editor and publisher of The Day newspaper from 1984-2001, to the development of multicultural awareness and excellent writing skills in students.


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