Richards Prize

The Richards Prize for the best article in each volume year of The Journal of the Civil War Era is named in honor of George and Ann Richards. In 2002, the Richards made a spectacular contribution to Penn State’s Civil War Era Center, the editorial home of the journal, which provided the Center with a permanent source of income to fund scholarly research and outreach programs that advance our understanding of the Civil War era. This journal has been one of the beneficiaries of their generosity. The editors of the journal created the $1,000 Richards Prize in 2011 to recognize George and Ann Richards not only for their contribution to the center that now bears their name, but also to recognize their contributions to Civil War era scholarship generally.

Past winners

Tom Watson Brown Book Award

The $50,000 Tom Watson Brown Book Award is awarded annually by the Watson-Brown Foundation and the Society of Civil War Historians to the author or authors of the best book “on the causes, conduct, and effects, broadly defined, of the Civil War,” published in the preceding year.

Walter J. Brown, the broadcasting pioneer and founder of Spartan Communications, founded the Watson-Brown Foundation in 1970, naming it for his father, J. J. Brown, and the populist politician, Thomas E. Watson, the two men to whom Brown attributed his success. Through creativity, diligence, and financial support, the Watson-Brown Foundation labors to improve education in the American South by funding its schools and students, preserving its history, and encouraging responsible scholarship. Today the Foundation makes annual awards of more than $1 million in merit and need-based college scholarships to students from the Central Savannah River Area of Georgia and South Carolina. It also awards a year-long residential fellowship at the University of South Carolina for a graduate student in southern studies, as well as a number of short-term grants to scholars conducting research in regional repositories.

Each year Tad Brown, president of the Watson-Brown Foundation, presents the Tom Watson Brown Book Award at a special banquet during the annual meeting of the Southern Historical Association.

All genres of scholarship on the causes, conduct, and effects, broadly defined, of the Civil War are eligible for the Watson Brown Award. This includes, but is not exclusive to, monographs, synthetic works presenting original interpretations, and biographies. Works of fiction, poetry, and textbooks will not be considered. Jurors will consider nominated works’ scholarly and literary merit as well as the extent to which they make original contributions to our understanding of the period.

The deadline for submissions is January 31. Submission instructions and the contact information for the Watson Brown Award committee can be found at the Society of Civil War Historians website.

Past Winners

Anthony E. Kaye Memorial Essay Award

The Anthony E. Kaye Memorial Essay Award is presented biennially at the Society of Civil War Historians conference. It honors Tony Kaye (1962-2017), an innovative scholar of slavery at Penn State University and the National Humanities Center. Tony was an active member of the Society of Civil War Historians and one of the founding editors of the Journal of the Civil War Era. Tony’s contributions helped to make the journal an immediate success, engaging scholars across a wide variety of fields. The George and Ann Richards Civil War Era Center, the Journal of the Civil War Era, UNC Press,and the Society of Civil War Historians created this award to honor Tony’s passion for putting scholars in disparate fields in conversation with each other to enrich our understanding of the past.

Call for papers for the Anthony E. Kaye Memorial Essay Award