Winning essays on patriotism can be found online

Published in the June 21 – July 4, 2017 of Morgan Hill Life

By Staff Report

Luciano Guerra

In March, the organizers of Freedom Fest encouraged students in Morgan Hill’s public and private schools to enter the annual patriotic essay writing contest.

This year’s topics was: “If you could take a trip to any of America’s National Monuments, Historic Sites, or National Parks, where would you go and why?”

The judges read from 346 entries. The grand prize primary school winner was Luciano Guerra, a second-grader at Charter School of Morgan Hill. The winning essays can be found at

Below is Guerra’s essay:

If I could take a trip to any of America’s National Monuments, I would like to visit Ellis Island in New York.  This is because I learned about it in second grade, and I want to learn more about this important monument and where my family and I came from.

Ellis Island meant hope and freedom to immigrants who came from all over the world. Millions of people came to the island between 1892 and 1954, and were ready to start a new life in the United States.

Some of my family immigrated from Portugal, Italy, and Ireland.  I want to travel to Ellis Island to see if any of my ancestors are on the list.

In school, we had “Ellis Island Day” so we dressed up like people did during that time and went through the immigration stations. We were interviewed and had our suitcases checked.  If people were sick when they arrived in New York and the nurses couldn’t heal then, some had to return back to their home country.

Also, first class passengers were treated better on the ships to New York.  They had better seats and ate tasty food like apple cider and cookies.  Second and third class passengers were crowded together and had only water and potato soup.

Everyone was so happy and excited when they arrived.  It didn’t matter what class they were in.

In conclusion, if I could take a trip to any of America’s National Monuments, I would choose Ellis Island.  This is the place where people from other countries became United States citizens.