The Mississippi Historical Society held its annual meeting at the MississippiUniversityfor Women inColumbus, March 1 through March 3, to honor its 2012 award winners and offer presentations on the meeting’s theme of “The Bicentennial of the War of 1812.” Over 120 participants attended the sessions, where topics included the battle for the southern frontier,Mississippi’s American Indians, the Natchez Trace, and local history projects.
Daniel P. Jordan, president emeritus of the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, was awarded the society’s honor, the B.L.C. Wailes Award for national distinction in the field of history. For 23 years Jordanheaded the Thomas Jefferson Foundation, the nonprofit organization that owns and operates Monticello, the home of Thomas Jefferson, and concurrently he was a “Scholar in Residence” at the Universityof Virginia. His publications include Political Leadership in Jefferson’s Virginia (University of Virginia Press), A Richmond Reader (University of North Carolina Press), and Tobacco Merchant: The Story of Universal Leaf Tobacco Company (University Press of Kentucky). He is now a partner in Bryan & Jordan Consulting, LLC inRichmond,Virginia.
Ron and Mimi Miller received the Dunbar Rowland Award for their lifelong contributions to the preservation, study, and interpretation ofMississippihistory. For more than thirty years the Millers have worked to save and restore hundreds of historic buildings inNatchez. From the storefront rehabilitation program for the historic downtown to the courthouse records project, their tireless leadership at the Historic Natchez Foundation has resulted in programs that continue to stimulate development while preserving the town’s history.
MississippiSchoolfor Math and Science history and government teacher Charles M. Yarborough won the John K. Bettersworth Award. The prize includes a $300 cash award.
Paul T. Murray was awarded the Halsell Prize for the best article published in the Journal of Mississippi History. His article “Father Nathaniel and the Greenwood Movement” appears in the Fall 2010 issue of the Journal of Mississippi History.
The Covington County Historical Society won the Frank E. Everett Award for its outstanding contributions to the preservation and interpretation ofMississippihistory.
The Elbert R. Hilliard Oral History award was presented to Avery Rollins for his exemplary work in coordinating and implementing the FBI Oral History Program inMississippi.
Bertram Wyatt-Brown, the Richard J. Milbauer Professor Emeritus at the University of Florida and Visiting Scholar, Johns Hopkins University, won the 2012 Mississippi History Now Award for his article “Anne Ellis Dorsey: a Woman of Uncommon Mind.”
Patricia Buzard Boyett won the Riley Prize for her doctoral dissertation “Race and Justice inMississippi’s Central Piney Woods, 1940-2010” presented for her Ph.D. in history from theUniversityofSouthern Mississippi. The prize is awarded biennially as merited and carries a $500 cash award.
Awards of merit were presented to Samuel H. Kaye for his exemplary preserving the history of Columbus and Lowndes County and your longtime support of statewide historical organizations; Oktibbeha County Heritage Museum for its exemplary work in preserving and interpreting the history of Oktibbeha County; Bridget Smith Pieschel for her exemplary work with the Center for Women’s Research and Public Policy and the Welty Writer’s Symposium and in documenting the history of the Mississippi University for Women; Mona Vance for her exemplary with the archival and history programs of the Columbus-Lowndes Public Library; and Chrissy Wilson, for her exemplary work with the “History Is Lunch” program for the MDAH and for her longtime service as managing editor of The Journal of Mississippi History.
Newly elected officers of the Mississippi Historical Society are Mary Carol Miller,Greenwood, president; Charles Sullivan, Perkinston, vice president; and Elbert R. Hilliard, MDAH, secretary-treasurer.
New members of the society’s board of directors for 2012–2015 are Larry Albert, Hattiesburg; Dernoral Davis, Jackson State University; Martha Hutson, Mississippi College; Elizabeth Ann Payne, University of Mississippi; Stuart Rockoff, Jackson; and William “Brother” Rogers, Mississippi State University. Thomas P. Watts,Madison, was elected to fill an unexpired term.
New members of the society’s Board of Publications for 2012–2015 are John Langston, University Press of Mississippi, and Charles Sallis,Jackson.
The Mississippi Historical Society, founded in 1858, encourages outstanding work in interpreting, teaching, and preserving Mississippi History. It provides annual grants to support programs of the Junior Historical Society and publishes books, maps, and other materials aimed toward the education of the general public. Membership is open to anyone; benefits include receiving the quarterly Journal of Mississippi History, the monthly Mississippi History Newsletter, and discounts at the Mississippi History Store. For information on becoming a member, call 601-576-6849 or see the MHS Web site, www.mdah.state.ms.us/admin/mhistsoc.html.
[Press release from Mississippi Department of Archives and History]