2021 Award Winners
The Society is pleased to award the 2021 Trask Award to Arnita Jones for her distinguished career in service to federal and public history. As a founding member of both SHFG and NCPH, Jones consistently worked to improve connections in the federal and public history communities. Her constant advocacy for history is something we all aspire toward.
Office/Program Member Award
National Cemetery Administration Office of Engagement and Memorial Innovation (History Program),
America’s World War II Burial Program
America’s World War II Burial Program, the first of the National Cemetery Administration’s World War II Commemorative Series of educational publications, is the 2021 recipient of the SHFG Member Award for a Group project. This booklet balances the history of the “Return of the Dead Program,” and that of the national cemeteries with plentiful illustrations, and the unique and engaging stories of a diverse selection of individual World War II veterans buried in veteran’s cemeteries across the country. Their approach to the material informs a general audience of the agency’s work, and the U.S. Government’s deep commitment to “the final disposition of our soldiers’ remains, in accordance with the wishes of their loved ones” as “the final gesture of a grateful country to those who paid the supreme sacrifice.”
James Madison, Article Prize
“The Race for Kuwait: Operation Vigilant Warrior: October-December 1994” by Dr. J. Travis Moger
Dr. J. Travis Moger’s article "The Race for Kuwait: Operation Vigilant Warrior: October-December 1994" is the first in-depth examination of this operation. It shows that rather than being a time of relative stability in the Middle East, the mid-1990s was characterized by frequent crises and standoffs. In this context, the United States Army played a vital role in deterring war by deploying ground forces, often very quickly. The article draws on a number of newly declassified operational documents and gives us a new understanding of American diplomatic activity and military operations in the Middle East.
Henry Adams Book Award
The Deportation Machine: America’s Long History of Expelling Immigrants, Adam Goodman
The 2021 Henry Adams Book Prize is awarded to Adam Goodman’s The Deportation Machine: America’s
Long History of Expelling Immigrants (Princeton University Press). The Deportation Machine traces the
development of the U.S. immigration bureaucracy and the federal government’s power to expel
foreigners from its inception in the Chinese exclusion laws of the late 19th century, through coerced
removal campaigns of the mid-20th century, to more-recent efforts to increase the rate of deportations
on the Mexican Border. In doing so, Goodman focuses not just on officially ordered deportations but
also on less formal methods for removing foreigners such as administrative “voluntary departure”
programs and coercive campaigns designed to convince them to “self-deport.” As a result, The
Deportation Machine presents a more comprehensive history of U.S. deportation policies than previous
studies. To tell this story, Goodman drew upon oral histories and extensive archival research conducted
in both the U.S. and Mexico, including federal records at the National Archives, LBJ Presidential Library,
and the U.S. Army Heritage and Education Center. In addition presenting an engaging history of federal
deportation policies, The Deportation Machine provides grounded context for current debates about
U.S. immigration policies and serves as an example of federal history’s ability to contribute to public
policy discussions and speak to audiences outside of the academy. Goodman is assistant professor of
History and Latin American and Latino Studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago. The Deportation
Machine is his first book.
Excellence In New Media Award
National Park Service History Office, “A Sense of Place: Stories of Stewardship from the National Park Service”
The SHFG New Media Award committee is pleased to announce that the National Park Service history office’s project, “A Sense of Place: Stories of Stewardship from the National Park Service” is our 2021 award recipient. Many federal history offices conduct oral history interviews. Those interviews often only have an audience internal to the agency in the period immediately after their creation and then are accessioned into an archive where they might be used by researchers in the distant future. “A Sense of Place” offers an innovative approach to utilizing oral histories to tell stories that are accessible to the public. Through a combination of narration and selected extracts from agency oral histories, the NPS history office created podcasts that are both informational and engaging. The eight-episode series covers multiple facets of the Park Service and listeners hear employees explain in their own words what is required to manage, protect, and interpret our national treasures.