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The Society for History in the Federal Government (SHFG): < > awards eight prizes that recognize and encourage excellence in the study of the history of the U.S. federal government. The awards and prize competition, judged by professional historians, archivists, documentary editors, curators, and preservationists, is intended to draw attention to outstanding and praiseworthy work. The Society hopes that the result will be increased appreciation of both the federal government's history and the efforts of those who, through a variety of methods and media, explore that history. Each prize consists of a framed certificate to be presented at the Society's annual spring meeting, held in the Washington, D.C.

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 two prizes, The Franklin Delano Roosevelt Award and the Ellen Trautman 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 history. A recipient of this award does not need to be a society member. The Mary Ellen Trautman Award recognizes outstanding service to the Society.

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 chairperson or committee members listed for the specific award. Submissions should be received by November 15, but galley or other proofs of works to be published between November 15 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 Henry J. Gwiazda, SHFG Award Committee Chair: tel. 301-837-1780; or E-mail: <[log in to unmask]>. 

Specifics for each prize are as follows:

1) Henry Adams Prize (Book)
2) George Pendleton Prize (Book)
3) James Madison Prize (Published Article or Essay)
4) Charles Thomson Prize (Published Article or Essay)
5) Thomas Jefferson Prize (Documentary Editions and Research Tools)
6) John Wesley Powell Prize (Historic Preservation and Historical Display)

Please consult the following Web site for further information:  < >.


Laura Gottesman
Digital Reference Team
The Library of Congress