The Annual Nevins - Freeman Award

In 1974, The Civil War Round Table of Chicago established the Nevins-Freeman Award, and bestows it annually on an individual whose advancement of American Civil War scholarship and support for the Round Table movement warrant special recognition. The award itself is designed as a generous financial donation to a historical preservation project chosen by the recipient.

This award is named for two men whose legacies have come to be synonymous with the Civil War era.

Illinois native and multi-Pulitzer Prize winner Allan Nevins (1890-1971) earned a stellar reputation as a scholar and was a foremost authority on 19th century American history. Author of over 50 titles, his 8-volume Ordeal of the Union is considered his most important work.

(Photo Courtesy Gerald L. Fetner)


The son of a Confederate soldier, Douglas Southall Freeman (1886-1953) is also the recipient of multiple Pulitzers. A native of Virginia, he built a career as a journalist, editor, biographer and historian, and is best known for his acclaimed studies of General Robert E. Lee.

(Photo Courtesy Virginia Historical Society)

Allan Nevins

Douglas S. Freeman

The very first Nevins-Freeman recipient was famed author Bruce Catton, a Civil War Round Table of Chicago charter member. Other winners include Ralph G. Newman (1975), T. Harry Williams (1976), Ed Bearss (1980) and Bud Robertson (1981).

We’re proud to announce that the 2019 Nevins-Freeman Award is presented to esteemed preservationist Jim Lighthizer.

Past Nevins-Freeman Award Recipients:

1974: Bruce Catton
1975: Ralph G. Newman
1976: T. Harry Williams
1977: Lloyd D. Miller
1978: Bell I. Wiley
1979: E.B. (Pete) Long
1980: Edwin C. Bearss
1981: James I. (Bud) Robertson, Jr.
1982: Frank E. Vandiver
1983: John Hope Franklin
1984: Richard B. Harwell
1985: John Y. Simon
1986: Harold M. Hyman
1987: James T. Hickey
1988: Robert K. Krick
1989: Mark E. Neely, Jr.
1990: Marshall D. Krolick
1991: Gary Gallagher
1992: Shelby Foote
1993: Stephen B. Oates
1994: Alan T. Nolan
1995: Richard Nelson Current
1996: James M. McPherson
1997: Wiley Sword
1998: William C. (Jack) Davis
1999: David Herbert Donald

2000: Charles P. Roland
2001: J. Brooks Davis
2002: Harold Holzer
2003: Jerry L. Russell
2004: Terry Winschel
2005: Richard McMurry
2006: Gordon Dammann
2007: Horace Mewborn
2008: Bruce Allardice
2009: Craig Symonds
2010: Robert I. Girardi
2011: A. Wilson Greene
2012: Tom Schwartz
2013: Lawrence Hewitt
2014: Jim Ogden
2015: Dennis Frye
2016: Lance Herdegen
2017: John Marszalek
2018: Greg Biggs
2019: Jim Lighthizer
2020: Earl J. Hess
2021: Tom Clemens
2022: Mary Abroe

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