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Walter S. Rosenberry Graduate Fellowship in Forest and Conservation History

Walter S. Rosenberry (1931-2005), a long-time supporter and Forest History Society Board member, provided the Society’s first endowment in support of its awards program. Rosenberry received a B.A. degree in History from Harvard University, graduating magna cum laude in 1953. He taught English and history at the Kent Denver School from 1959 to 1981. In addition to his career in teaching, Rosenberry was known widely for his community service and philanthropy. The fellowship provides a stipend to support the doctoral research of a graduate student attending a university in North America whose research contributes to forest and conservation history.


Fellowship Details

Offered by the Forest History Society, the Walter S. Rosenberry Fellowship provides a $15,000 stipend to support the doctoral research of a graduate student attending a university in North America and whose research contributes to forest and conservation history. Research focus on the historic relationships between humans, forests, and related resources is required. The fellowship recipient will also be eligible for a $1,000 travel allowance that will be considered upon documentation of the student having a paper accepted at a professional conference. Examples of acceptable topics include:

  • Forest landscape change and history
  • invasive species
  • forest and ecosystem management
  • forest policy and institutions
  • resource-dependent communities
  • private land ownership
  • science and technology developments
  • sustainability.

The recipient is selected on the basis of merit: proposals are judged in terms of overall significance, achievability, quality of presentation, academic record, and relevance to forest history. A panel of judges including members of the FHS Board of Directors will be convened to select the recipient. The fellowship is awarded on an annual basis with payments usually scheduled quarterly.


Submission Guidelines

1. Provide a cover letter that states the title of the proposed research, a one-paragraph summary of the significance of the project, and a description of the historical nature of the project.

2. Prepare a narrative description of the research project (up to eight pages), including significance of topic, research approach, author's background, research and writing schedule, and budget (how you plan to use the fellowship if awarded). Attachments are not required but may include previous publications, written chapters, and basic bibliography, etc.

3. Supply curriculum vita, academic transcript, and 2–3 letters of recommendation from persons knowledgeable of your research. Letters of recommendation should address the author's qualifications and may describe the significance of the topic to forest and conservation history.

4. Send an electronic copy of the proposal in PDF format to Andrea at andrea.anderson@foresthistory.org. Applicants may, in addition, send one hard copy to: Andrea Anderson, Forest History Society, 701 William Vickers Avenue, Durham, NC 27701-3162.

5. Deadline is March 1, 2017. Winner usually announced by mid-May.

Winners of this award are required to submit one bound copy of their dissertation to the FHS library; provide a copy of any books or articles that are emergent research products; recognize the fellowship in published articles, books, and oral presentations related to the research; and maintain membership in the Forest History Society.


Recent Recipients

2016
Nickolas Perrone
Perrone’s dissertation, "Hemlock Democracy: Nature and Capitalism in the Leather Industry, 1812-1911," focuses on leather tanning during the nineteenth century and how this industry affected the eastern hemlock forests. This project will draw together business and economic history with environmental and forest history in important and valuable ways.

2015
Owen James Hyman
His dissertation project entitled "Naturalized Race, Industrialized Forests: An Environmental History of Jim Crow in the Forest Industries of Louisiana and Mississippi, 1880-1960" will examine how ideas about the landscape shaped ideas about race and labor in the South after Reconstruction. The panel of judges considered his proposal an important and compelling study in both southern history and environmental history. Mr. Hyman is thinking about race in ways that few southern environmental historians have to date.