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PCAD 050 - Washington State History and Government (Judd/Tveten)  

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Final Research Essay

WASHINGTON STATE Final Research Essay


Your task:

You will choose a specific topic that must be connected to Washington State.  You will research and write an essay about that topic. You will also need to create a specific question that narrows the focus of your essay. You will answer this question in your essay.

For example, if your topic was the fur trade then your question might be how did the fur trade impact the Native Americans? Or, what led to the end of the fur trade? Or, why did the fur trade expand into Washington State? Etc.

Washington State topic ___________________________________________

Research Question:_______________________________________________


Project Requirements:

1. Research essay

  • Must be at least 5 paragraphs (Introduction, Body Paragraphs, and Conclusion)
  • Include background information in your introduction so your reader is well aware of the topic, as well as a hook and thesis statement.
  • Be sure to use evidence from your research to support and explain your thesis. This will require at least 1 in-text citation (quoted or paraphrased) per body paragraph in proper MLA format. 
  • Type, proofread carefully, and DO NOT plagiarize
  • Format: Heading and Title, Times New Roman 12, double spaced, 1 inch margins

2. Map

Your essay must have a map that shows where exactly the event or events took place. Include a typed caption that explains the map.

3. Pictures

Your essay needs to have at least one picture that shows an important person, place, or thing related to the topic. Be sure to include typed captions for all pictures.

4. Sources

You will be required to do a Works Cited page in proper MLA format that includes a minimum of 3 sources. At least one source must be a book (it can be print or online).



Ideas for Washington State History Topics


  • Statehood and Constitution 1889
  • Seattle Fire 1889
  • Northern Pacific Railroad and Henry Villard 1883


  • Klondike Gold Rush 1897-1899
  • Great Northern Transcontinental Railroad completed to Seattle, James J. Hill 


  • Growth of lumber industry - Weyerhaeuser
  • Birth of the Industrial Workers of the World (IWW) and Wobblies (unions)
  • Washington's suffrage movement


  • Boeing is founded
  • Washington State and World War I 1917-1918
  • Prohibition is adopted in Washington (1914) and in the United States (1920)
  • Seattle General Strike 1919 


  • Bertha Knight Landes - Seattle's first female mayor


  • Construction of Grand Coulee Dam (begins 1933)
  • The New Deal in Washington State
  • The Great Depression in Washington State (Hoovervilles) 


  • Washington's contribution to the World War II war effort
  • Japanese Internment
  • Hanford Atomic Project 


  • Life in Washington State (you decide the focus)


  • World's Fair 1962
  • Anti-Vietnam War Protests in Washington State


  • US v. Washington, Boldt Decision (1974) and Native American disputes over fishing rights
  • Eruption of Mt. St. Helens (May 18, 1980) 


  • Spotted owl controversy
  • Growth of Microsoft


  • WTO protests
  • Makah whaling controversy
  • Impact of Paul Allen on Seattle
  • Gary Locke's career as governor of Washington



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