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Awards Requirements

The 2010 Thomas Jefferson Prize recipients.

Each year the Society awards six prizes for various types of historical publication and work furthering the understanding and history of the federal government: the Henry Adams and George Pendleton Prizes (Books), the James Madison and Charles Thomson Prizes (Articles or Essays), the Thomas Jefferson Prize (Documentary Edition or Research Aid), and the John Wesley Powell Prize (Historic Preservation or Historical Display). The other three prizes, the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Award, the Maryellen Trautman Award, and the Roger R. Trask Award, recognize service to the profession not necessarily associated with publication, historic preservation, or public interpretive display.

The most prestigious service award, the Franklin Delano Roosevelt Award, given every three years, recognizes outstanding contributions to the study of the federal government’s history. A recipient of this award does not need to be a society member.

The Maryellen Trautman Award recognizes outstanding service to the Society.

The Roger R. Trask Award honors historians whose work reflects the unique importance of federal history and the mission of the Society. The annual award winner delivers the plenary address or, alternatively, participates in the plenary panel at the Society’s annual meeting; his or her remarks are subsequently published in the Society’s online journal, Federal History; and he or she receives an honorarium of $200 along with a certificate of recognition.

Annual Prizes: General Requirements for all Six Prizes

Authors, editors, publishers, members of the Society, or others who have knowledge of the eligible works may submit entries to the committee members listed for the specific award. Submissions should be received by November 30, but galley or other proofs of works to be published between November 30 and December 31 will be accepted with the understanding that copies of the published work will be sent to the appropriate awards chair as soon as possible, but no later than January 10. General questions on the award program or policy may be addressed to Suzanne Junod, SHFG Awards Committee Chair: telephone 301–796–8951, or e-mail Suzanne.Junod@fda.hhs.gov.

Specifics for each prize are as follows.

I. Henry Adams Prize (Book)

This annual award is given for an outstanding major publication on the federal government’s history. Entries may be narrative histories, edited collections of articles or essays, or any other published historical work of comparable scope. The Adams Prize is given to an individual or to principal collaborators. Entries are judged for value in furthering the understanding and history of the federal government; quality and thoroughness of research; style and appropriateness of presentation; suitability and rigor of methodology; and use of original and primary materials.

In addition to the General Requirements, nominated works must have been published in the calendar year immediately preceding the Spring awards. One copy of the publication, accompanied by a brief letter stating the qualifications and merits of the nominated work, should be mailed to each member of the Adams/Pendleton Committee by November 30:

  1. Dr. Richard Baker, 9621 Culver Street, Kensington, MD  20895
  2. Dr. Marilyn Parr, 9605 Brunett Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20901–3232
  3. Dr. Richard McCulley, 319 D Street, SE, Washington, D.C. 20003

The Adams Prize commemorates the author of the classic multi–volume History of the United States during the Administrations of Thomas Jefferson and James Madison. Adams completed his scholarly work in Washington, where he maintained close contact with the successors of federal officials whose activities he analyzed in his History.

II. George Pendleton Prize (Book)

This annual award is given for an outstanding major publication, on the federal government’s history produced by or for a federal history program. The Pendleton Prize is given to an individual author or to principal collaborators. The type of work eligible and the criteria that judges will apply for quality are identical to those for the Adams Prize. The Pendleton Prize has the additional requirement that the publication nominated must have been produced by a federal historian(s) or for a federal history program, including history offices in the federal agencies and history-related programs in other federal entities.

In addition to the General Requirements, the nominated work must have been published in the calendar year immediately preceding the Spring awards. One copy of the publication, accompanied by a brief letter stating the qualifications and merits of the work, should be mailed to each member of the Adams/Pendleton Committee by November 30:

  1. Dr. Richard Baker, 9621 Culver Street, Kensington, MD  20895
  2. Dr. Marilyn Parr, 9605 Brunett Avenue, Silver Spring, MD 20901–3232
  3. Dr. Richard McCulley, 319 D Street, SE, Washington, D.C. 20003

The Pendleton Prize commemorates Ohio Senator George H. Pendleton, sponsor of the 1883 civil service reform act that bears his name.

III. James Madison Prize (Published Article or Essay)

This annual award is given for excellence in an article or essay that deals with any aspect of the federal government’s history. Entries are judged for value in furthering the understanding and history of the federal government; quality and thoroughness or research; style and appropriateness or presentation; suitability and rigor of methodology; and use of original and primary materials.

In addition to the General Requirements above, the work must have been published in the calendar year immediately preceding the Spring awards. The entry deadline is November 30.

Mail one copy of the publication, accompanied by a brief letter commenting on the merits of the work, to each of the following committee members:

  1. Committee Chair:  Nicholas Schlosser, History Division, Marine Corps University, 3078 Upshur Ave, Quantico, VA 22134
  2. Caryn E. Neumann, Visiting Assistant Professor of History, Miami University of Ohio, 4200 North University Boulevard, Middletown, OH 45042-3497
  3. Roger Launius, 12622 Kornett Lane, Bowie, MD 20715-2866

The Madison Prize commemorates the principal author of The Federalist, some of the most significant essays on the nature of the federal government.

IV. Charles Thomson Prize (Published Article or Essay)

This annual award is given for excellence in an article or essay that deals with any aspect of the federal government’s history written in or for a federal history program. Submission requirements and the criteria that judges will apply for quality are identical to those for the Madison Prize with the additional requirement that the nominated article or essay must have been prepared by a federal historian or for a federal history program, including history offices in the federal agencies and history-related programs in other federal entities.

In addition to the General Requirements above, the article or essay must have been published in the calendar year immediately preceding the Spring awards. The entry deadline is November 30.

Mail one copy of the publication, accompanied by a brief letter commenting on the merits of the work, to each of the following committee members:

  1. Committee Chair:  Nicholas Schlosser, History Division, Marine Corps University, 3078 Upshur Ave, Quantico, VA 22134
  2. Caryn E. Neumann, Visiting Assistant Professor of History, Miami University of Ohio, 4200 North University Boulevard, Middletown, OH 45042-3497
  3. Roger Launius, 12622 Kornett Lane, Bowie, MD 20715-2866

The Thomson Prize commemorates the secretary of Congress from 1774 to 1789, America’s first archivist.

V. Thomas Jefferson Prize (Documentary Editions and Research Tools)

The Jefferson Prize alternates annually to recognize excellence in documentary editions and research tools and will be for a work published (or, if unpublished, completed) within the two calendar years immediately preceding the Spring awards

The award for a documentary edition will recognize the editor(s) of a documentary history project, publishing either a single volume or one or more volumes, that contributes significantly to our understanding of the history of the federal government.  Entries, which are submitted by November 30 in even-numbered years, will be judged on the editorial methodology employed, including accuracy of transcription, relevance and usefulness of annotation, selection and arrangement of documents, and indexing.

The award for research tools recognizes the creator(s) of an outstanding research aid (e.g., inventory, index, finding aid, biographical directory, bibliography) that facilitates the work of those researching the history of the federal government.  Entries, which are submitted by November 30 in odd-numbered years, will be judged on success in furthering the understanding and history of the federal government, style and appropriateness of presentation, content, organization, and ease of use.

Electronic documentary editions and research tools will also be evaluated for solid technological capabilities and performance, high quality of design, and innovative strategies or techniques.

A copy of each entry with a letter briefly stating its qualification and merits should be sent to each of the Jefferson Committee members by November 30:

  1. Richa Wilson, US Forest Service Intermountain Region, 324 25th Street, Ogden, UT 84401
  2. Alisa Whitley, United States Marine Corps Archives, 2040 Broadway Street, Quantico, VA 22134
  3. Jennifer Ross-Nazzal, Ph.D., 2003 Seakale Lane, Houston, TX 77062

The Thomas Jefferson Prize commemorates the third president of the United States and the author of the Declaration of Independence.  Jefferson was a firm believer in the study of history and the preservation of historical records.

VI. John Wesley Powell Prize (Historic Preservation and Historical Display Projects)

The John Wesley Powell Prize commemorates the explorer and federal administrator whose work demonstrated early recognition of the importance of historic preservation and historical display.

The Powell Prize alternates annually in recognizing excellence in the fields of historic preservation and historical displays. In 2015, the prize will be awarded to either an individual or to principal collaborators for a single major historical display or exhibit project completed in 2013 or 2014. The award for historical display is given for any form of interpretive historical presentation including, but not limited to, museum exhibits, historical films, CD/DVDs, websites, or multi-media displays. The winner will be announced in the spring of 2015 at the annual meeting of the SHFG.

Eligible Entrants

•  Any agency or unit of the federal government

•  Nongovernmental organizations, including federal contractors, for eligible activities on behalf of a unit of the federal government

•  Members of the Society for History in the Federal Government

Criteria for Evaluation

•  Exemplary model for future federal activity
•  Significant value in furthering history in and of the federal government
•  A high level of technical expertise in the design
•  Excellence and thoroughness of historical research
•  Appropriate application of historical research to the exhibit or product
•  Innovative strategies or techniques

Submission Requirements

The award is made solely on the basis of the materials submitted to the Powell Prize Committee. All nominations must be submitted in electronic format, using MS Word or PDF format that can be viewed on standard equipment.  Supplemental hard copies are acceptable.  Applications may be submitted via CD/DVD or thumb drive.  All submissions must include the following information:

•  Name of the nominated project or activity
•  Project contact person(s) name, address, telephone number, and e-mail
•  Name of the nominator, if different from the contact person, and the nominator’s address, telephone number, and e-mail
•  A description of the project or activity, including discussion of its scope and purpose, an explanation of how the project addresses the evaluation criteria, and the names of any co-sponsors (1,500 words or less).
•  Supporting visual materials of key aspects of the activity or project, appropriately labeled. These materials may include:

•  CDs, DVDs
•  Photographs (digital or supplemental hard copies);
•  Other media such as plans, elevations, brochures, or newsclips.

•  All submitted material becomes the property of SHFG.

Submission of Entries and Deadline

Please send a complete copy of each nomination to each of the committee members below no later than November 30, 2014.  Materials should be mailed via FedEx or similar courier so that submissions can be tracked by the sender and recipient if necessary.  Applicants may email questions to committee members but must not email application materials.

1. Liz Petrella, National Park Service, Technical Preservation Services, 1201 Eye Street, NW, 6th floor, Washington, DC 20005, or liz_petrella@nps.gov

2. Lou Ann Speulda-Drews, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 1340 Financial Blvd, Suite 234, Reno, NV 89502 or louann_speulda-drews@fws.gov

3. Virginia Parks, Cultural Resources Team, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, 20555 SW Gerda Lane, Sherwood, OR 97140 or Virginia_parks@fws.gov

 

Current award winners for 2014 are featured at  http://shfg.org/shfg/awards/current-winners/