The Wyoming State Historical Society recognizes individuals and organizations in the field of Wyoming history through an annual awards program. The awards are presented each year at the annual meeting of the society on the Saturday following Labor Day. Nominations are submitted through the local and county chapters of the society, individuals who are members of the society may also make nominations, and self-nominations are encouraged.

The society seeks nominations that reflect outstanding work in preserving and interpreting Wyoming history. Awards are divided into seven main category groups. An awards manual can be found online at www.wyshs.org or by contacting society headquarters at 307-322-3014 or linda@wyshs.org. Nomination deadlines must be received by April 30 of each year.

Jane Gebhart, chair of the society’s awards committee said interest in the history of Wyoming continues to increase each year. “With changing times, we have expanded the Awards program to recognize blogs, Facebook pages and other electronic forms of celebrating history, in addition to the traditional awards for publications, fine arts, preservation, renovation and youth activities.” She added, “The society’s awards program opens many opportunities to recognize the efforts of others in promoting Wyoming’s rich legacy.”

Following are award winners for 2018:


  • Non-Fiction Books: 1. Atlantic City, Wyoming 1886-2018: Voices from a Powerful Place, Bob Townsend, editor; 2. Wyoming Airmail Pioneers by Starley Talbot and Michael Kassel, Cheyenne; HM, Snow Chi Minh Trail: The History of I80 between Laramie and Walcott Junction. first edition by John Waggener, Laramie.
  • Reference: 1. Pleasant Valley Cemetery aka Little Iowa Cemetery 1917-2017 by Lorna Wheeler, Natural Bridge, Virginia.
  • Self-Published: 1. West to Wyoming: The Extraordinary Life and Legacy of Stephen Wheeler Downey by Kim Viner, Laramie.
  • Newsletters: 1. The Log (Sheridan County Historical Society) by Molly Dow, Sheridan; HM, Rockpile RoundUp (Rockpile Museum Association), Gillette.
  • Magazine articles: 1. All American Indian Days and the Miss Indian American Pageant by Greg Nickerson, Laramie; HM, Carrie Burton Overton, Annals of Wyoming, 8/17 by Kim Viner, Laramie.
  • Newspapers: 1. Life in Death: Pleasant Valley Cemetery by Kathy Brown, Gillette.
  • Calendars: 1. 2018 Calendar of Star Valley History by Judy Erickson, Afton.
  • Pamphlets: 1. Hotel LaBonte by Adeline Schultheis, Douglas.

Internet Website

  • 1. Albany County Historical Society, website by Cameron Green, Laramie.


  • 1. Annual Cemetery Tour, Douglas Historical Preservation Commission.

Annual Service Award

  • 1. Lisa Thalken, Douglas.

Activities Award

  • 1. Marjorie Sanborn and Hazel Mudget for Preservation of Jay Em, Wyoming; 1. Bri Brasher and Leonard Cash for History on Main Street, Newcastle; 1. Friends of Fort Fetterman for annual 4th of July Celebration, Douglas; 1. Ray Jacquot for First Ascent of the Grand Teton, Laramie.

Fine Arts

  • 1. Wyoming Sheep Wagon by Shaunda Parrish, Douglas.

Henryetta Berry Award

  • 1. Jennifer Romanoski, Buffalo.

Mabel Brown Cumulative Contribution Award

  • 1. Patty Myers, Buffalo.

L.C. Bishop Award

  • 1. Geri and George Zeimans for Western Plains Historic Preservation Association, Lingle.

Judge and Mrs. Percy Metz Award

  • 1. Alice Tratebas, Old Mill Inn Photographic Database, Newcastle.

Maurine Carley Memorial Historic Preservation Award

  • 1. Sherri Mullinnix for Camp Douglas: POW Camp.

Outstanding Historic Preservation Award

  • 1. Scott and Jacey Bauman, College Inn Bar, Douglas.

Young Historians

  • Grades 3-5: 1. Collin McConkey for “Native American Life,” Newcastle; 2. Madison Hespe for “The Medicine Wheel,” Newcastle; 3. Spencer Lorenz for “Native American Villages,” Newcastle.
  • Grades 9-12: 1. Paige Martinez for “…the American Bison,” Cody; 2. Aby Bock for “Wyoming Art History, Newcastle; 3. Shaye Walker for “Boom and Bust,” Newcastle.

Junior Activities

  • Grades 3-5: 1. Janet Ruleaux, educator for classroom activity “Big Horn Museum,” Sheridan; 2. Drew Conzelman for “the Big Hunt,” Newcastle; 3. Jace Rich for “Wyoming Indian History,” Newcastle.

Community News Editor

Sally Ann Shurmur arrived at the Star-Tribune to cover sports two weeks after graduating from the University of Wyoming and now serves as community news editor. She was raised in Laramie and is a passionate fan of Cowboys football, food and family.

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