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Thursday, September 28, 2023


Library to award state history research

Friends of the Texas Room is accepting applications for the second annual Julia Ideson Award.

With the award, Friends of the Texas Room will recognize projects that contribute to Texas history and culture using the resources of the Houston Public Library’s Texas Room.

The award is in honor of Julia Ideson, Houston Public Library’s first director, and is presented at the Friends of the Texas Room annual October meeting.

‘The award is an opportunity to showcase scholarship while showing research through the Houston Metropolitan Research Center,’ former UH history professor William Kellar said.

Keller, who retired from UH in August, is a member of the Friends of the Texas Room.

Friends of the Texas Room supports the collections of the Texas and Local History Department, the Archives and Manuscripts Department and the Special Collections Department of the Houston Metropolitan Research Center of the Houston Public Library.

The inaugural Julia Ideson award went to Houston historian David Welling for his book Cinema Houston: from Nickelodeon to Megaplex. Weller was one of 14 entries that judges reviewed for the award.

‘Last year’s panel consisted of Don Carleton from University of Texas, Richard Dickerson from the University of Houston and Lee Pecht of Rice University,’ Kellar said. ‘These are real experts in the historic field.’

The panel for this year’s competition has not been announced.

Entries can range from published books and articles to theses, films or video productions and Web sites.

Entries should focus on Texas history or culture within the last five years and include significant research through the Houston Metropolitan Research Center.

Students and faculty wishing to enter the contest must complete entry packets and postmark them by June 1 for consideration.

‘This is a new award that highlights someone’s work, and students already do the research for projects that can be recognized,’ Kellar said.

Students have the opportunity to compete with professional historians, which can bring a lot of prestige when a student wins the award, Keller said.

‘The winning entry will get a plaque and several gifts from the library,’ he said.

For more information visit the Friends of the Texas Room Web site,

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