About the William Best Hesseltine Award | Wisconsin Historical Society

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About the William Best Hesseltine Award

About the William Best Hesseltine Award | Wisconsin Historical Society
Snapshot of Professor Hesseltine seated holding a book he wrote.

Professor William Hesseltine, 1948

Madison, Wisconsin. Hesseltine holds a copy of his book, "Lincoln and the War," during 1948 Book Week. Source: Wisconsin State Journal. View the original source document: WHI 55471

The William Best Hesseltine Award was established in 1965 in memory of historian and Wisconsin Historical Society past president William B. Hesseltine. The award honors the writer of the best article in the previous volume year in the Wisconsin Magazine of History. The results are announced in the Winter issue of the magazine, and the winner receives a small cash prize. Since 2022, the winner has been determined by a juried panel. 

Recent Award Winners

  • 2022 - 2023: Kim E. Nielsen
    for the article, "Ott v. Ott: Family Violence, Divorce, and Women's Agency in Nineteenth-Century Wisconsin"
  • 2021 - 2022: Matt Blessing
    for the article, "A Northern Farm Cradled in Pines: The Legacy of Soren Uhrenholdt"
  • 2020 - 2021: Matt Blessing
    for the article, "Reading the Landscape: Aldo Leopold’s Use of History"
  • 2019 - 2020: Matt Blessing
    for the article, "'Alaska, Ho!': Arville Schaleben and the Matanuska Valley Colony"
  • 2018 - 2019: Lee Grady
    for the article, "America's Alien Enemies: Registering as German in Wisconsin During World War I"
  • 2017 - 2018: Zoe von Ende Lappin
    for the article, "Pioneer Editor: Pete Savage and the Iron River Pioneer"
  • 2016 - 2017: Jennifer Van Haaften
    for the article, "Re-visiting the American Pioneer Spirit: The Extended Family of Laura Ingalls Wilder"
  • 2015 - 2016: John Nondorf
    for the article, "Nous Vous Remercions: The French Gratitude Train"
  • 2014 - 2015: Erika Laabs
    for the article, "The Farm at Ten Chimneys: A Closer Look at the Home of Alfred Lunt and Lynn Fontanne"
  • 2013 - 2014: Kimberly Aime
    for the article, "Heritage of the Harvest: Taming the Wild Cranberry"
  • 2012 - 2013:   Matthew Prigge
    for the article, "The 'Girl-Man' of Milwaukee : The Lives of Cora Anderson"
  • 2011 - 2012:   Kathryn Parks and Colleen McFarland
    for their article, "Stitch by Stich: The Life and Legacy of Elizabeth Zimmermann"
  • 2010 - 2011:   Jeffrey J. McLean
    for the article, "The MacArthurs and the Mitchells: Wisconsin's First Military Families"
  • 2009 - 2010:   Lynda Salisbury and Lonna Schumacher Morouney
    for the article, "Encore, Encore! On Stage with the Sidell Sisters and the Leo Kehl School of Dancing"
  • 2008 - 2009:   William Povletich
    for the article, "Liberace: The Milwaukee Maestro"
  • 2007 - 2008:   Mark Speltz
    for the article, "If Ordinary Walls Could Talk: Piecing Together the History of My House"
  • 2006 - 2007:   Erika Janik
    for the article, "Good Morning Homemakers!"
  • 2005 - 2006:   Amelia Klem Osterud
    for the article, "A Life of Her Own Choosing: Anna Gibbons' Fifty Years as a Tattooed Lady"
  • 2004 - 2005:   Russell Horton
    for the article, "Unwanted in a White Man's War: The Civil War Service of the Green Bay Tribes"
  • 2003 - 2004:   Clark Kidder
    for the article, "West by Orphan Train"
  • 2002 - 2003:   William H. Tishler and Erik M. Ghenoiu
    for the article, "Conservation Pioneers: Jens Jensen and the Friends of Our Native Landscape"
  • 2001 - 2002:   Jim Draeger and Gerry Strey (tie)
    for Jim Draeger's article, "Postal-Perfect: My Pursuit of Mail-Order Homes in Wisconsin," and Gerry Strey's article, "The 'Oleo Wars': Wisconsin's Fight over the Demon Spread"

Have Questions?

For more information, email the "Wisconsin Magazine of History" at wmh@wisconsinhistory.org or or visit the magazine's landing page here.