Successful Grant Application Example 1

Example Application

Title of Project:

"The 1565 Chaseabout Raid: An Examination of Noble Feuding, Factionalism and Religion in Mid-Sixteenth Century Scotland"

Please email this completed application, along with a resume, a description of the project, and a budget (if applicable) to the Undergraduate Chair.

My Honors history thesis will study feuding, factionalism, religion, and dynastic and land claims among the elite in post-Reformation mid-sixteenth century Scotland through the examination of the events, circumstances, and elite personalities surrounding the 1565 Chaseabout Raid. Secondary historical scholarship on the Chaseabout Raid centers almost entirely on Mary, Queen of Scots (r. 1542-67) rather than on the numerous earls, such as Argyll, Arran, Lennox, and Moray, who rose in rebellion against her. In terms of historiography, my thesis will therefore depart from traditional scholarship and could question several fundamental assumptions of Scottish history, particularly with respect to religious issues. The rebellious earls were all prominent landowners in Scotland and were deeply involved with the government, holding various offices, conciliar appointments, and positions in parliament. At the same time, despite the rapid proliferation of the Protestant Reformation in Scotland, some of the involved earls remained Catholic; in the instance of this rebellion, Catholics and Protestants banded together to act in a manner they thought most beneficial for their state. By investigating the rebellion with a focus on these prominent individuals, I believe that I will be able to offer new conclusions regarding the rebellion as well as larger implications regarding the Protestant Reformation in Scotland, the rise of the modern notion of allegiance, and the construction of the modern Scottish state.

Mary, Queen of Scots returned from France to rule in 1561, a Roman Catholic in the newly Protestant Scotland. The event that triggered the 1565 rebellion was Mary's unpopular marriage to her English cousin, Henry, Lord Darnley. Disliked by both her cousin Queen Elizabeth I of England and the nobility of her own realm, the union was particularly hated because Darnley was a prominent Catholic with blood claims to both the Scottish and English thrones. Many notable lords led a rebellion that divided the nobility into unexpected factions, such as the joining of Protestants and Catholics. Mary raised troops and, after military action, defeated the rebels, many of whom fled to England. While the queen's marriage served as an event to rally against, I believe that various alliances, decisions, and actions made during the course of the rebellion will reveal knowledge concerning feuding, factionalism, and religion.

Through reading of secondary scholarship on this subject, as well as consultation with Dr. Margo Todd, my thesis advisor, I have determined that this subject has not yet been adequately examined by historians. Previous scholarship has been too focused on the queen to attend to the voluminous sources available to study the earls and the larger political context. Despite increasing efforts to digitize sources from this period, many original sources are unavailable outside the National Archives of Scotland (NAS) and the National Library of Scotland (NLS), both located in Edinburgh. Specific records I plan to work with include the records of the Privy Council of Scotland, the royal letter books, the records of the Great and Privy Seal, Parliament records, all in the NAS, and special manuscript collections in the NLS. By using the extensive online resources provided by these archives, I will be able to plan what sources I want to use ahead of time I to make the most use of my time in Edinburgh. In addition, by examining published calendars of state papers in Van Pelt before my visit, I will be able to identify many of the exact documents I wish to study at the archives. My thesis advisor will also be in Scotland during my proposed trip and has offered to help introduce me to the archives.

My trip to Edinburgh, currently estimated as being 9 nights in length, will require flying from Newark International Airport, the airport closest to my home, to Edinburgh, staying in Edinburgh for 8 nights (discrepancy is due to most flights leaving the US in the evening), and bus transportation to/from and possibly within Edinburgh. Please see the attached proposed budget for my trip. Although I realize that my budget exceeds my grant request and that the History department grants do not cover lodging, I am seeking additional funding to cover these expenses. The grant from the History department, which would fund a good portion of my airline ticket, would make my trip feasible. While I am seeking additional assistance for travel, lodging, and some photocopying, I will happily assume all food and any incidental costs.

Thank you for your consideration.


While I am applying for funds from the history department to only cover part ($500) of my airline ticket and/or photocopying/scanning expenses, below please see my total projected budget.


transportation from NJ home to Newark International Airport

round-trip flight from Newark, NJ to Edinburgh, UK

bus transportation to/from Edinburgh Airport-city center

travel within Edinburgh by bus


hostel: £50 pounds per week ($100 USD) for 3 weeks


archives: potential photocopying charges

Food and Other Personal Expenses: