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John H. Holliday Award

I can't thank the Society of Indiana Pioneers enough. They have really been an encouragement to me in the classroom.
These hands-on learning opportunities cannot happen without the help of partners like the Pioneers. They have made my history dreams come true!

Matthew BarnettMaconaquah Schools, Bunker Hill

The John H. Holliday Award is given to encourage the study of pioneer history by students in grades K-12. Up to two $1,000 awards are given annually to a history class, club, or similar group sponsored by a school or not-for-profit educational organization.

To be considered for the Holliday Award, groups must complete an application form and commit to a project, program, or activity related to early Indiana history in the upcoming school year.


Applications are due by September 30, with funding decisions announced on November 1.


Educators may request grants for public, private, or charter schools or not-for-profit organizations. Teachers of Indiana history, U.S. History, Indiana Studies, and pioneer-related content in any discipline (literature, music, art, etc.) are encouraged to apply.


The Society of Indiana Pioneers will evaluate applications based on:

  • A detailed description of the proposed project or activity;
  • Evidence of student involvement in all phases of the project from conception to execution;
  • The use of “hands-on” or experiential learning strategies;
  • The relevance to Indiana’s pioneer era, 1800 to 1850;
  • The number of students who will participate in the project.

If selected for the Holliday Award, the applicant will receive a check for $1,000 made out to the school corporation or sponsoring entity. Upon project completion, grantees are asked to provide evidence of student learning (such as photographs, written reports, or videos). The award includes a complimentary one-year Associate Membership in the Society of Indiana Pioneers for the group’s primary sponsor. The group winning the award will be recognized in the next edition of the Yearbook of The Society of Indiana Pioneers and at the Annual Meeting of the Society in November.

How to apply

Please complete the John H. Holliday Award application and email it by the deadline to

Download the John H. Holliday Award application