George Washington Book Prize

Given by Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History

82 Works 24,897 Books 464 Reviews 4.1
Awards an annual $50,000 prize. The George Washington Book Prize recognizes the year’s best books on the nation’s founding era, especially those that have the potential to advance broad show more public understanding of American history. show less
All, Winner (19), Finalist (63)
All, 2023 (1), 2022 (5), 2021 (7), 2020 (7), 2019 (6), 2018 (7), 2017 (7), 2016 (7), 2015 (4), 2014 (3), 2013 (4), 2012 (3), 2011 (3), 2010 (3), 2009 (3), 2008 (3), 2007 (3), 2006 (3), 2005 (3)

Winner 19

First Among Men: George Washington and the Myth of American Masculinity by Maurizio Valsania2023
Washington at the Plow: The Founding Farmer and the Question of Slavery by Bruce A. Ragsdale2022
1774: The Long Year of Revolution by Mary Beth Norton2021
The British Are Coming: The War for America, Lexington to Princeton, 1775-1777 by Rick Atkinson2020
The Indian World of George Washington: The First President, the First Americans, and the Birth of the Nation by Colin G. Calloway2019
George Washington: A Life in Books by Kevin J. Hayes2018
Valiant Ambition: George Washington, Benedict Arnold, and the Fate of the American Revolution by Nathaniel Philbrick2017
The Washingtons: George and Martha, "Join'd by Friendship, Crown'd by Love" by Flora Fraser2016
An Empire on the Edge: How Britain Came to Fight America by Nick Bunker2015
The Men Who Lost America: British Leadership, the American Revolution, and the Fate of the Empire (The Lewis Walpole Series in Eighteenth-Century Culture and History) by Andrew Jackson O'Shaughnessy2014
George Washington: Gentleman Warrior by Stephen Brumwell2013
Liberty's Exiles: American Loyalists in the Revolutionary World by Maya Jasanoff2012
Ratification: The People Debate the Constitution, 1787-1788 by Pauline Maier2011
Plain, Honest Men: The Making of the American Constitution by Richard Beeman2010
The Hemingses of Monticello: An American Family by Annette Gordon-Reed2009
The slave ship. A human history by Marcus Rediker2008
Sons of Providence: The Brown Brothers, the Slave Trade, and the American Revolution by Charles Rappleye2007
A Great Improvisation: Franklin, France, and the Birth of America by Stacy Schiff2006
Alexander Hamilton by Ron Chernow2005

Finalist 63

Perfecting the union : national and state authority in the US Constitution by Max M. Edling2022
The Howe Dynasty: The Untold Story of a Military Family and the Women Behind Britain's Wars for America by Julie Flavell2022
Minds and Hearts: The Story of James Otis Jr. and Mercy Otis Warren by Jeffrey H. Hacker2022
George Washington: The Political Rise of America's Founding Father by David O. Stewart2022
Aristocratic Education and the Making of the American Republic by Mark Boonshoft2021
Tacky's Revolt: The Story of an Atlantic Slave War by Vincent Brown2021
Tecumseh and the Prophet: The Shawnee Brothers Who Defied a Nation by Peter Cozzens2021
The Age of Phillis by Honorée Fanonne Jeffers2021
The President Who Would Not Be King: Executive Power under the Constitution (The University Center for Human Values Series, 48) by Michael W. McConnell2021
A Question of Freedom: The Families Who Challenged Slavery from the Nation’s Founding to the Civil War by William G. Thomas III2021
Stolen: Five Free Boys Kidnapped into Slavery and Their Astonishing Odyssey Home by Richard Bell2020
The Property of the Nation: George Washington’s Tomb, Mount Vernon, and the Memory of the First President by Matthew R. Costello2020
Heirs of an Honored Name: The Decline of the Adams Family and the Rise of Modern America by Douglas R. Egerton2020
World of Trouble: A Philadelphia Quaker Family's Journey through the American Revolution (The Lewis Walpole Series in Eighteenth-Century Culture and History) by Richard Godbeer2020
A Crisis of Peace: George Washington, the Newburgh Conspiracy, and the Fate of the American Revolution by David Head2020
The Widow Washington: The Life of Mary Washington by Martha Saxton2020
Rush: Revolution, Madness, and Benjamin Rush, the Visionary Doctor Who Became a Founding Father by Stephen Fried2019
Jefferson's Daughters: Three Sisters, White and Black, in a Young America by Catherine Kerrison2019
The Tragedy of Benedict Arnold: An American Life by Joyce Lee Malcolm2019
Revolution Song: A Story of American Freedom by Russell Shorto2019
Young Washington: How Wilderness and War Forged America's Founding Father by Peter Stark2019
The New Map of Empire: How Britain Imagined America before Independence by S. Max Edelson2018
Boston’s Massacre by Eric Hinderaker2018
Patrick Henry: Champion of Liberty by Jon Kukla2018
The Burr Conspiracy: Uncovering the Story of an Early American Crisis by James E. Lewis2018
The Power of Objects in Eighteenth-Century British America by Jennifer Van Horn2018
Darkness Falls on the Land of Light: Experiencing Religious Awakenings in Eighteenth-Century New England by Douglas L. Winiarski2018
George Washington's Journey: The President Forges a New Nation by T. H. Breen2017
"Most Blessed of the Patriarchs": Thomas Jefferson and the Empire of the Imagination by Annette Gordon-Reed2017
A Revolution in Color: The World of John Singleton Copley by Jane Kamensky2017
The Framers' Coup: The Making of the United States Constitution by Michael J. Klarman2017
Fatal Sunday: George Washington, the Monmouth Campaign, and the Politics of Battle by Mark Edward Lender2017
American Revolutions: A Continental History, 1750-1804 by Alan Taylor2017
Madison’s Hand: Revising the Constitutional Convention by Mary Sarah Bilder2016
Independence Lost: Lives on the Edge of the American Revolution by Kathleen DuVal2016
Washington's Revolution: The Making of America's First Leader by Robert Middlekauff2016
Revolutions without Borders: The Call to Liberty in the Atlantic World by Janet Polasky2016
Braddock's Defeat: The Battle of the Monongahela and the Road to Revolution by David L. Preston2016
War of Two: Alexander Hamilton, Aaron Burr, and the Duel that Stunned the Nation by John Sedgwick2016
A Tale of Two Plantations: Slave Life and Labor in Jamaica and Virginia by Richard S. Dunn2015
When the United States Spoke French: Five Refugees Who Shaped a Nation by François Furstenberg2015
The Royalist Revolution: Monarchy and the American Founding by Eric Nelson2015
The First Presidential Contest: 1796 and the Founding of American Democracy by Jeffrey L. Pasley2014
The Internal Enemy: Slavery and War in Virginia, 1772-1832 by Alan Taylor2014
Among the Powers of the Earth: The American Revolution and the Making of a New World Empire by Eliga H. Gould2013
Martha Jefferson Randolph, Daughter of Monticello: Her Life and Times by Cynthia A. Kierner2013
Thomas Jefferson and American Nationhood by Brian Douglas Steele2013
Was America Founded As a Christian Nation?: A Historical Introduction by John Fea2012
Clothed in Robes of Sovereignty: The Continental Congress and the People Out of Doors by Benjamin H. Irvin2012
Revolutionaries: A New History of the Invention of America by Jack Rakove2011
The Civil War of 1812: American Citizens, British Subjects, Irish Rebels, & Indian Allies by Alan Taylor2011
The Founding Fathers Reconsidered by R. B. Bernstein2010
Abigail and John: Portrait of a Marriage by Edith Gelles2010
The Road to Monticello: The Life and Mind of Thomas Jefferson by Kevin J. Hayes2009
The Exchange Artist: A Tale of High-Flying Speculation and America's First Banking Collapse by Jane Kamensky2009
Unruly Americans and the Origins of the Constitution by Woody Holton2008
1812: War with America by Jon Latimer2008
A Perfect Union: Dolley Madison and the Creation of the American Nation by Catherine Allgor2007
In the Name of the Father: Washington's Legacy, Slavery, and the Making of a Nation by François Furstenberg2007
General George Washington: A Military Life by Edward G. Lengel2006
Iron Tears: America's Battle for Freedom, Britain's Quagmire: 1775-1783 by Stanley Weintraub2006
Landon Carter's Uneasy Kingdom: Revolution and Rebellion on a Virginia Plantation by Rhys Isaac2005
The Americanization of Benjamin Franklin by Gordon S. Wood2005


Awards an annual $50,000 prize. The George Washington Book Prize recognizes the year’s best books on the nation’s founding era, especially those that have the potential to advance broad public understanding of American history. (English, Member-written)
The award—which is co-sponsored by Washington College, the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, and George Washington's Mount Vernon—recognizes the past year's best books on the nation's founding era, especially those that have the potential to advance broad public understanding of American history. (English, Member-written)


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