Philip M. Hamer and Elizabeth Hamer Kegan Award

Purpose and Criteria:

This Philip M. Hamer and Elizabeth Hamer Kegan Award recognizes an archivist, editor, group of individuals, or institution that has increased public awareness of a specific body of documents (which can be a specific archival collection or thematic aggregation) through compilation, transcription, exhibition, or public presentation of archives or manuscript materials for educational, instructional, or other public purpose. Work that has impact on a local, regional, national, and/or international level is welcomed. Nominee(s) should meet one or more of the following criteria and provide supporting documentation as evidence:

  • Project was/is achieved through compilation, transcription, exhibition, or public presentation of archives or manuscript materials that go above and beyond conventional archival processing / arrangement and description work. 

  • Project effectively raises public awareness of a specific body of archival or manuscript documents (may include photos, films, etc.). 

  • Project has clear educational, instructional, or other public purpose with evidence provided of the impact of the educational/instructional work, etc. 

  • Project clearly conveys the value of the records.


Individual archivists and editors, groups of individuals, organizations. This award is open to nominees within and outside of the United States, and is not limited to SAA members.

Sponsor and Funding:

The Society of American Archivists Foundation, with the cash prize underwritten by a fund first established by Elizabeth Hamer Kegan in 1973. The award honors two SAA Fellows and past presidents. Elizabeth Hamer Kegan was appointed Assistant Librarian of Congress in 1963, where she directed information, exhibits, publications, and international visitors' programs and shepherded the American Revolution Bicentennial Program. Her late husband, Philip M. Hamer, was a historian who served successively as head of the Library, Accessions, Reference, and Records Control divisions of the National Archives, and was the first executive director of the National Historical Publications Commission. He was the author of A Guide to Archives and Manuscripts in the United States (1961). The award was modified in 1987, 1991, and 2017. 


A certificate and a cash prize of $500.

Selection Committee:

The Hamer-Kegan Award Subcommittee of the SAA Awards Committee is composed of three members of the Society of American Archivists and one of the co-chairs of the Awards Committee (ex officio). One member of the subcommittee shall be appointed each year by the SAA Vice President to serve a three-year term. The senior member of the subcommittee in years of service shall serve as chair.

Application Deadline and Nomination Form:

Click here to preview the nomination form and/or to start a nomination. All nominations must be submitted by February 28 of each year.  

Philip M. Hamer and Elizabeth Hamer Kegan Award Recipients:

2023:  Dr. William Fliss

2022:  San Diego Air and Space Museum

2021:  California State University Japanese American Digitization Project

2020:  Laura Wagner

2019:  Dickinson College Archives and Special Collections for Carlisle Indian School Digital Resource Center

2018:  Find & Connect, eScholarship Research Centre

2017:  The Center for Home Movies

2016:   South Asian American Digital Archive

2015:  The Legacy Center, Drexel University College of Medicine 

2014:  Emma Goldman Papers Project

2013:  Densho: The Japanese American Legacy Project

2012:  Immigration History Research Center, University of Minnesota

2011:  March On Milwaukee Civil Rights History Project team (University of Wisconsin–Milwaukee Libraries)

2010:  Giza Archives at the Museum of Fine Arts, Boston

2009:  Ward M. Canaday Center for Special Collections of the University of Toledo

2008:  Canadian Broadcasting Corporation and the CBC Digital Archives (Les archives de Radio-Canada)

2007:  National Library of Medicine's Profiles in Science

2006:  The State Library and Archives of Florida's Florida Folklife Digitization and Education Project

2005:   Survivors of the Shoah Visual History Foundation

2004:   Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission

2003:   New York State Archives Partnership Trust 

2002:   Vermont State Archives

2001:   Shelly Henley Kelly

2000:   Jeffrey D. Marshall, A War of the People: Vermont Civil War Letters

1999:   Delaware Public Archives

1998:   Linda A. Ries

1997:   Minnesota Historical Society

1996:   Julie Daniels, Judy Hohmann, Jean West

1995:   New York Public Library

1994:   American Heritage Center at University of Wyoming

1993:   Carl Albert Center at University of Oklahoma

1992:   Elaine Forman Crane, Northeastern University Press

1991:   James D. Folts, Larry Hackman, Judy Hohmann

1990:   Judy Hohmann

1989:   Jane Doerr

1988:   Nancy Bartlett, Kathleen Koehler

1987:   Robert E. Bailey, Elaine S. Evans

1986:   Not awarded

1985:   Claude-Ann Lopez

1984:   David Wilson

1983:   Robert E. McCarthy

1982:   Mary Dix

1981:   Sharon Macpherson

1980:   Linda J. Pike

1979:   Raymond W. Smock

1978:   Philander D. Chase

1977:   Dorothy Twohig

1976:   Charles F. Hobson

1975:   Harold Dean Moser

1974:   David W. Hirst

 1973:   Patricia A. Clark