AHA Awards, Prizes and Honors

The American Historical Association announced its 2011 awards, prices and honors at its 126th annual meeting.  We extend our congratulations to all the recipients, noting especially winners from the Mid-Atlantic region:

Michael A. Reynolds, Princeton University: George Louis Beer Prize, for his book, Shattering Empires: The Clash and Collapse of the Ottoman and Russian Empires, 1908–1918 (Cambridge University Press).

Established by a bequest from George Beer, a historian of the British colonial system before 1765, this prize is offered annually in recognition of outstanding historical writing in European international history since 1895. This year, two outstanding works are being honored.

Carol Benedict, Georgetown University: John K. Fairbank Prize in East Asian History, for her book, Golden-Silk Smoke: A History of Tobacco in China, 1550–2010(University of California Press).

Established in 1968 by friends of John K. Fairbank, the prize is an annual award offered for an outstanding book in the history of China proper, Vietnam, Chinese Central Asia, Mongolia, Manchuria, Korea, or Japan since the year 1800.

Alan M. Stahl, Princeton University, and Independent Scholars Pamela O. Long and David McGee, J. Franklin Jameson Prize  for their volume, The Book of Michael of Rhodes: A Fifteenth-Century Maritime Manuscript, 3 vols. (MIT Press).

Established in 1980, this prize is awarded every five years for outstanding achievement in the editing of historical sources. The prize is named in honor of J. Franklin Jameson, a founder of the Association and longtime managing editor of the American Historical Review.

Jonathon Glassman, Northwestern University, Martin A. Klein Prize for his book, War of Words, War of Stones: Racial Thought and Violence in Colonial Zanzibar (Indiana University Press).

Awarded for the second time, the Klein Prize recognizes the most distinguished work of scholarship on African history published in English during the previous year. Focusing primarily on continental Africa (including those islands usually treated as countries of Africa), books on any period of African history and from any disciplinary field that incorporates an historical perspective are eligible. The prize committee pays particular attention to methodological innovation, conceptual originality, literary excellence, and reinterpretation of old themes or development of new theoretical perspectives.

Michael Cook, Princeton University, Waldo G. Leland Prize, editor The New Cambridge History of Islam (Cambridge University Press).

The Leland Prize is offered every five years for an outstanding reference tool in the field of history.

Michael R. Ebner, Syracuse University, Helen and Howard R. Marraro Prize in Italian History, for his book Ordinary Violence in Mussolini’s Italy (Cambridge University Press).

Established in 1973, the Marraro Prize is offered annually for the best work in any epoch of Italian history, Italian cultural history, or Italian-American relations.

Donald R. Kelley, Rutgers University—New Brunswick, AHA Award for Scholarly Distinction.

In 1984 the Council of the American Historical Association established a new award entitled the American Historical Association Award for Scholarly Distinction. Each year a nominating jury—composed of the president, president-elect, and immediate past president—recommends to the Council of the Association up to three names for the award. Nominees are senior historians of the highest distinction in the historical profession who have spent the bulk of their professional careers in the United States.

James Billington, Librarian of Congress, Troyer Steele Anderson Prize.

At its December 27, 1963, meeting, the AHA Council established this prize endowed by a bequest from Frank Maloy Anderson, a longtime AHA member. The prize was to be awarded every ten years beginning in 1970 to the person whom the Council of the Association considered to have made an outstanding contribution to the advancement of the purposes of the Association during the preceding ten years. In 1990, the Council and the Professional Division reviewed the history of the prize and approved several recommendations, including awarding the prize at least every five years to recognize service to the profession. More recently, the Professional Division agreed to award the prize on a regular basis to honor AHA members’ contributions to the Association.

Alfred Goldberg, former director of the Historical Office of the Office of the Secretary of Defense, Herbert Feis Award for Distinguished Contributions to Public History.

Established in 1984, this prize is offered annually to recognize distinguished contributions to public history during the previous ten years. The prize is named in memory of Herbert Feis (1893–1972), public servant and historian of recent American foreign policy, with an initial endowment from the Rockefeller Foundation. The prize was originally given for books produced by historians working outside of academe. From 2006, the scope of the award is widened to include other types of public history work.

The terms of the award now define both “contribution” and “public history” broadly. Contributions could, for example, include work as the administrator of a public history group or agency (such as a historical society, a historic site, or a community history project) or as the creator or producer of a public history product or products (such as a museum exhibit, radio script, website, oral history collection, or film).

Elizabeth Blackmar, Columbia University, Nancy Lyman Roelker Mentorship Award.

In recognition of her exceptional role as a teacher, scholar, and committed member of the historical profession, and on the occasion of her seventy-fifth birthday, friends, colleagues, and former students established the Nancy Lyman Roelker Mentorship Award to recognize and encourage mentoring in the historical profession. The special quality of mentorship is the human quality in teaching, revealed in commitment to the value of the study of history and the love of teaching it to students, regardless of age or career goals. It carries with it a personal commitment by the mentor to the student as a person. The award is operated on a three-year cycle: graduate, undergraduate, and precollegiate. The 2011 honor is awarded to an undergraduate mentor.

New York Public Library, Roy Rosenzweig Prize for Innovation in Digital History, for their digital archive What’s on the Menu?.

The Rosenzweig Prize is sponsored jointly by the AHA and the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. It was developed by friends and colleagues of Roy Rosenzweig (1950–2007), the Mark and Barbara Fried Professor of History and New Media at George Mason University, to honor his life and work as a pioneer in the field of digital history. The prize will be awarded annually to honor and support work on an innovative and freely available new media project, and in particular for work that reflects thoughtful, critical, and rigorous engagement with technology and the practice of history.

Visit the AHA website for complete descriptions of the awards and the entire list of winners.