The Society for Historical Archaeology James Deetz Award Committee is seeking nominations from members, authors, and publishers for the award.
The Deetz Award is named for James Deetz (1930-2000), whose books are classics for professional archaeologists as well as for nonspecialists. Deetz’s accessible and entertaining style of writing gave his books influence beyond the discipline because they are read by a broad audience of non-specialists. The Deetz Award is intended to recognize books and monographs that are similarly well written and accessible to all potential readers.
Books and monographs bearing a date of publication from the previous three years of the conference date will be eligible for consideration for the award that will be presented at the Annual Meetings.
Submissions must meet the following criteria:
- Historical or post-medieval archaeology must be the major focus of the work;
- The work must be based upon archaeological evidence rather than strictly upon historical evidence;
- The work may deal with European, colonial, or indigenous cultural groups in early modern and modern times but not solely with prehistory;
- The work may be a monograph or an edited volume of essays on the same theme;
- The work must be well written and accessible and have appeal both to crossover audiences and to the public (i.e., not aimed specifically at scholarly or specialist audiences).
Deadline: June 3, 2021
Please send a brief email to the Chair of the Awards Committee at the address below. The letter of nomination must include contact information (including e-mail address and telephone) for an appropriate person at the press where the book was published, as well as for the book’s author(s). Contact the Chair of the SHA Awards Committee in advance of the deadline for shipping information.
Deetz Book Award
Paul Mullins, Chair
SHA Awards Committee
2004 Thomas N. Layton, Gifts of the Celestial Kingdom: A Shipwrecked Cargo for Gold Rush California (Stanford University
2005 Laurie A. Wilkie, The Archaeology of Mothering: An African-American Midwife’s Tale (Routledge, 2003).
2006 Jane Perkins Claney, Rockingham Ware in American Culture, 1830-1930: Reading Historical Artifacts (University Press of New
2007 Kent G. Lightfoot, Indians, Missionaries, and Merchants: The Legacy of Colonial Encounters on the California Frontiers (University of California Press, 2004)
2008 Mark P. Leone, The Archaeology of Liberty in an American Capital: Excavations in Annapolis (University of California Press, 2005)
2009 James Bruseth and Toni Turner, From a Watery Grave: The Discovery and Excavation of La Salle’s Shipwreck, La Belle (Texas A&M University Press, 2005)
2010 Shannon A. Novak, House of Mourning: A Biocultural History of the Mountain Meadows Massacre (University of Utah Press, 2008)
2011 James P. Delgado, Khubilai Khan’s Lost Fleet: In Search of a Legendary Armada (University of California Press, 2008)
2012 Laurie A. Wilkie, The Lost Boys of Zeta Psi: A Historical Archaeology of Masculinity at a University Fraternity (University of California Press, 2010)
2013 Kelly J. Dixon, Julie M. Schablitsky, and Shannon A. Novak (editors), An Archaeology of Desperation: Exploring the Donner Party’s Alder Creek Camp (University of Oklahoma Press, 2011)
2014 Leland Ferguson, God’s Fields: Landscape, Religion, and Race in Moravian Wachovia (University Press of Florida, 2014)
2015 Meta F. Janowitz and Diane Dallal (editors), Tales of Gotham, Historical Archaeology, Ethnohistory and Microhistory of New York City (Springer, 2013)
2016 Elizabeth Terese Newman, Biography of a Hacienda: Work and Revolution in Rural Mexico (University of Arizona Press, 2014)
2017 Robin M. Lillie and Jenifer E. Mack, Dubuque’s Forgotten Cemetery: Excavating a Nineteenth-Century Burial Ground in a Twenty-First-Century City (University of Iowa Press, 2015)
2018 Martha A. Zierden and Elizabeth J. Reitz, Charleston: An Archaeology of Life in a Coastal Community (University Press of Florida, 2016)
2019 Rachael Kiddey, Homeless Heritage: Collaborative Social Archaeology as Therapeutic Practice (Oxford University Press, 2017)
2020 Chip Colwell, Plundered Skulls and Stolen Spirits: Inside the Fight to Reclaim Native America’s Culture (University of Chicago Press, 2017)
2021 James. P. Delgado, War at Sea: A Shipwrecked History from Antiquity to the Twentieth Century (Oxford University Press, 2019)