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Award-Winning Author Annette Gordon-Reed to Receive Empire State Archives and History Award

January 28, 2021 4:49 PM | Megan Eves (Administrator)

The New York State Archives Partnership Trust will award Annette Gordon-Reed, an award-winning author and history professor, the 2021 Empire State Archives and History Award on Tuesday, May 18 at 7:00 p.m. in the Cultural Education Center in Albany, New York. Harvard History Professor Gordon-Reed is known for her research on Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings, and her Pulitzer Prize winning biography, The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family.

The public is invited to hear Annette Gordon-Reed speak about her distinguished career as an author, historian and professor with prominent Lincoln scholar Harold Holzer. Tickets go on sale on Monday, March 1st and can be purchased by phone at 518-486-9349 or online at The program will be held at the Cultural Education Center located at 222 Madison Avenue, Albany, New York.

“We are proud to host this event to honor Annette Gordon-Reed with the Empire State Archives and History Award,”said Board of Regents Chancellor Betty A. Rosa.  “Annette has done so much to bring our nation’s history through her work as an author and professor. We are honored to recognize her with this award.”

Interim State Education Commissioner Shannon Tahoe said, “Annette is so deserving of the Empire State Archives and History Award – her outstanding books and passion for history is an inspiring example of the importance and value of understanding our past.”. We thank Annette for sharing her passion for history with audiences and students around the world and are proud to recognize her with the Empire State Archives and History Award.”

“We’re honored to present Annette Gordon-Reed with the 2021 Empire State Archives and History Award,” said Tom Ruller, New York State Archivist and Executive Officer of the Archives Partnership Trust. “We’re proud to recognize Annette’s successful career and her dedication to promoting our nation’s rich history by presenting her with this prestigious award.”

Annette Gordon-Reedis the Charles Warren Professor of American Legal History at Harvard Law School and a Professor of History in the Faculty of Arts and Sciences at Harvard University. Gordon-Reed won sixteen book prizes, including the Pulitzer Prize in History in 2009 and the National Book Award in 2008 for The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family. In addition to articles and reviews, her other works include Thomas Jefferson and Sally Hemings: An American Controversy, Vernon Can Read! A Memoir, a collaboration with Vernon Jordan, Race on Trial: Law and Justice in American History, a volume of essays that she edited, Andrew Johnson and, most recently, with Peter S. Onuf, “Most Blessed of the Patriarchs”: Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination. Gordon-Reed was the Harold Vyvyan Harmsworth Visiting Professor of American History at Queen's College, University of Oxford (2014-2015) and the Carol K. Pforzheimer Professor at the Radcliffe Institute for Advanced Study at Harvard University (2010-2015). She was the 2018-2019 President of Society for Historians of the Early American Republic. She is the current President of the Ames Foundation. A selected list of her honors include a fellowship from the Dorothy and Lewis B. Cullman Center for Scholars and Writers at the New York Public Library, a Guggenheim Fellowship in the humanities, a MacArthur Fellowship, the National Humanities Medal, the National Book Award, the Frederick Douglass Book Prize, George Washington Book Prize, and the Woman of Power & Influence Award from the National Organization for Women in New York City. Gordon-Reed was elected a fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 2011 and is a member of the Academy’s Commission on the Humanities and Social Sciences. In 2019, she was elected as a member of the American Philosophical Society.

The Empire State Archives and History Award acknowledges the outstanding contributions by a national figure to advance the understanding and uses of history in society. Previous honorees include historians Doris Kearns Goodwin, Michael Beschloss, Henry Louis Gates, Jr., James McPherson, Robert Caro, David McCullough, Ron Chernow and Harold Holzer; documentarian Ken Burns; and actors Stephen Lang, Sam Waterson and Richard Dreyfuss. 

The Archives Partnership Trust is a statewide non-profit whose mission is to keep over 350 years of New York’s rich documentary heritage within the New York State Archives accessible and alive though education, preservation, and outreach programs. The New York State Archives is the largest repository of state government records in the nation, holding over 260 million records of state and colonial governments dating back to the Dutch colonial period in 1630. The New York State Archives is a program of the State Education Department’s Office of Cultural Education. For more information, visit and   

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