Rosemount High School: Getting medievalForget toilet papering at Homecoming. A group of four Rosemount High School seniors is ready to lay siege.
By: Nathan Hansen, Rosemount Town Pages
Forget toilet papering at Homecoming. A group of four Rosemount High School seniors is ready to lay siege.
The students — Stephen Brossart, Connor Carroll, Sean Conway and Alec Twaites — have built what it seems safe to assume is Rosemount’s only functioning trebuchet, a medieval weapon similar to a catapult.
The reasoning behind creating the trebuchet, which the students built at the end of their junior year as part of a final project for an AP history class, seems pretty simple: “Because we could,” they said.
Plus, they figured nobody else in their class would take on a project as substantial as building a siege weapon that stands 10 feet tall at the top of its frame and roughly 23 feet with its arm standing upright.
Brossart, Carroll, Conway and Twaites are used to taking on big projects together. When they were eighth graders they and two other Rosemount Middle School students formed a Destination ImagiNation team that was the first in the school’s history to advance to international competition.
One of the students’ biggest challenges this time around was finding a plan to follow. After two days of research online the biggest functioning trebuchet they could find was about 2 1/2 feet tall — way too small for this project. So, they did a little math, scaled things up and went to work. Building the trebuchet took about two weeks of work and a $20 investment from each student to buy wood.
“Fortunately it was the end of the school year and the teachers were starting to let up on homework,” Brossart said.
Building the trebuchet was a lot of work, but nobody seemed to mind. The hard manual labor appears was been mixed with plenty of fun times.
When they were done, they had a siege weapon that could toss a tomato, a water balloon or a miniature watermelon as far as 45 yards.
“My mom didn’t think it was going to take that long and she didn’t know it was going to be this big,” Carroll said last week after the students demonstrated their weapon. “She thought we were doing one that was, like, two feet tall and she was really mad when she found out how much time I was spending on it.
“But it was worth it and it was fun times and I’ll probably remember it for the rest of my life. It’s a good high school memory.”
It was a good grade, too. The foursome got a perfect score for their project.
Now that the war machine has served its purpose, the students plan to send it on its way with a bonfire.