Society Marks Centennial with John Hampden Holliday Prize

In anticipation of the celebration of the Society's centennial and the bicentennial of the State of Indiana, the Society of Indiana Pioneers created an award for the promotion of the highest quality of scholarship, research and writing about Indiana pioneer history from pre-history to and including the year 1851. The prize, named the John Hampden Holliday Prize to honor the Society’s founder, was officially designated as a Legacy Project by the Indiana Bicentennial Commission. Board member Julie Newhouse chaired the committee that reviewed the nominated works to select the winners.

At the Centennial Gala held at the Conner Prairie Interactive History Park in Fishers, Indiana, on June 27, 2016, the John Hampden Holliday Prize was awarded to the authors of three works which greatly added to the field of publications on Indiana pioneer history. The first prize of five thousand dollars ($5,000) was presented to Dr. James H. Madison for his book, Hoosiers: A New History of Indiana.  The second place prize of three thousand dollars ($3,000) was presented to Bob Ostrander for his 4 volume work, Indiana Bicentennials. Co-authors Lee Ann Sandweiss and Dr. James H. Madison shared the third place prize of two thousand dollars ($2,000) for their book, Hoosiers and the American Story. All of the authors were present and delivered brief acceptance remarks as they received their cash awards.

Deep Forest: A Novel of the Indiana Frontier

To honor the bicentennial of Indiana and centennial of The Society of Indiana Pioneers, the Society sponsored publication of a “lost historical novel” by a former leader of the Society. Attorney and historian Emsley W. Johnson, Sr. was Society president from 1940 to 1946. This intriguing story draws on experiences of his ancestors and relates challenges and triumphs of settlers between 1811 and 1861.

The manuscript was recently found among old family papers, has been edited by historical writer Nancy Niblack Baxter, and was an official Legacy Project of the Indiana Bicentennial Commission. Order your copy now (order form is available here). Proceeds go to The Society of Indiana Pioneers.


This page last updated on Tuesday, November 5, 2019 .
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