Wednesday, September 18, 2019

Verna Ross Orndorff Scholarship

The Verna Ross Orndorff Scholarship ($1000) was established in 1989 in honor of River Forest resident Verna Ross Orndorff, a lifelong student of Illinois history, to encourage interest in Abraham Lincoln and the Civil War in Illinois high schools.

To apply for the scholarship, essays meeting the following criteria should be submitted by December 31, 2019 :

  • The focus of the essay should be on Abraham Lincoln or a significant event in the Civil War period in Illinois;
  • Essays should be 1,500 words with a title page, outline, an annotated bibliography and suggestions for further reading.

The Illinois high school student whose research paper is selected will receive a $1,000 scholarship and a certificate of achievement and will be honored at the Annual Awards Banquet in April, 2020. The paper will be published in a forthcoming issue of Illinois Heritage magazine, the popular history magazine of the Illinois State Historical Society.

For more information:
Email or or call 217-525-2781.

Deadline for entries is December 31, 2019.

Entries may be mailed to: ISHS Scholarships, Illinois State Historical Society, 5255 Shepherd Road, Springfield, IL, 62703-5408



Please include the following information


  • Student Name
  • Grade
  • School
  • Student Address
  • Student Phone
  • Student Email Address
  • Sponsor Teacher Name
  • Sponsor Teacher Phone
  • Sponsor Teacher Email Address
  • Sponsor Teacher Address

Recent Recipients

Jessica Winter photo
The 2015 winner of the Verna Ross Orndorff Illinois history scholarship is Jessica Winter of Pana, a student at Pana High School, for her essay "Abraham Lincoln: A Congressman of the Prairie State"
picture of winner: Rachel Stowell

Rachel Stowell receives the ISGS Orndorff Scholarship from Elaine Egdorf and Illinois Comptroller Sheila Simon.

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