Tomorrow’s Historians 2024

by The Irvington Historical Society

On May 29, this year’s edition of “Tomorrow’s Historians,” a collaborative effort between the Irvington High School Social Studies Dept. and the Irvington Historical Society, was held in the Irvington High School library.  You can watch the video of the presentations by each of the students through the link below.

The “Peter K. Oley tomorrow’s Historians” project was begun eleven years ago in order to provide American History students the opportunity to share their historical research papers with the public.  The project, created by Dr. Erik Weiselberg, an Irvington High School Social Studies teacher and Irvington Village Historian, is named after one of Irvington’s most ardent and knowledgeable teachers/historians. 

The project is now overseen by Social Studies teachers Chris Barry and Lawrence Fata, who have selected the papers and organized the program.  At the symposium, Chris Barry served as moderator and spoke of how former teacher and Village Historian Peter Oley would have loved this event, given his passion for local history and his belief that students do best when they are given choices.

Here is a list of the students and their topics:

Group 1:  The Struggles/Conditions of American Minority Groups

Massimo Ferrari:   Could the United States Have Better Aided the Jews Before and During WWII?
Katherine Halee:   The Legacy of Mexican Immigration
Mohun Desai:   The Socio-Economic And White Superiority Underpinnings of Japanese American Internment During World War II
Michelle Zhou:   Eugenics and The Tuskegee Syphilis Study: Continuations of Racism Through Scientific Means in the 20th Century
Minori Furtado:   Reforging a Cultural Identify: The Hawaiian Renaissance and the Reclamation of Kaho’olawe, 1964-1994
Scott Zinman:   Game Changers: The Empowering Influence of Black Athletes on the Civil Rights Movement
Alyssum Wong:   Chinese Immigrants’ Rush into the California Gold Mines: A Period of Chinese Exploitation and Systemic

Group 2:  American Foreign Policy: Its History and Implications

Arya Bose:   James K. Polk: A President of the People?
Oliver Sack:   The Path to U.S. Intervention in Iraq
Wilson Lark:   The Manhattan Project: The Atomic Bomb and its Lasting Impacts on the Post-War World Order
Maureen O’Reilly:   The Work of the OSS in World War II
Olivia Liu:   Forging Identity and Fighting Against Injustice: The 1960’s Chinese Fight for Freedom
Jessica Nierman:  Echoes of Fear: Revealing the Atrocities of the Red Scare of 1920
Scarlett Zumbro:   Swastikas in Space: The Moral Fall-out of Operation Paperclip
Nathaniel Fensterstock:   The Need For the U.S. to Reestablish a Space Presence in a Post-Cold War

Group 3:  The Convergence of Culture and American History

Charlotte Fuchs:   American English – The History of a Misunderstood Dialect
Tane Kim:   Intersections of Art and Technology: Dualities of Destruction and Creation
Benjamin Meyer:   Oppressed Peoples in Silent Film and the Commercialization of American Prejudice
Samuel Andrade:  The Impact of Cartoonist Thomas Nast
Sophie Surguladze:   Unlocking the Code: How Social Media is Dismantling American Democracy
Samantha Toeman:  Not in My House