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Eugene S. Ferguson

The Ferguson Prize

The Eugene S. Ferguson Prize is awarded biennially by SHOT for outstanding and original reference work that will support future scholarship in the history of technology. The Ferguson Prize recognizes work that is in the tradition of scholarly excellence established by Eugene S. Ferguson (1916-2004), SHOT's pioneering bibliographer, a founding member of the Society (President, 1977-1978; da Vinci Medalist, 1977), museum curator and exhibit catalog author, editor, annotator, university professor, and scholar of the history of engineering and technology. The prize consists of a plaque and a cash award.

Reflecting the scope of Eugene Ferguson's contributions to the history of technology, submissions and nominations for the following types of reference and scholarly works and tools will be considered for the Ferguson Prize:


  • Bibliographies
  • Biographical dictionaries
  • Critical editions of primary source materials in English
  • Exhibition catalogues
  • Guides to the field of the history of technology
  • Historical dictionaries and encyclopedias
  • Subject guides to archival repositories and library sources
  • Topical atlases
  • Translated works (into English) with substantial annotation and other scholarly apparatus


The Eugene S. Ferguson Award Works that extend beyond the printed text, including other media, such as CDs, World Wide Web sites, and electronic data bases and tools, keeping in mind that the principal criterion of "support [of] future scholarship" for judging excellence requires that such works exhibit a degree of permanence similar to that of books.

In light of Eugene Ferguson's noteworthy contributions to our understanding of visual thinking and visual display, nominations of works that demonstrate commitment to and achievement of nonverbal knowledge generation and transmission are especially encouraged.

Works published in the four calendar years prior to the year of the award are eligible for consideration. Publication date shall be interpreted as the year in which the work to be considered first appeared (i.e., first edition, first issuance, first availability, first uploading to the World Wide Web, etc.)

All works considered must be in English.

Ron Kline, Pamela Long and Daivd McGee Awarded biennially, the next Ferguson Prize will be awarded in 2017 (pictured at right, SHOT president Ron Kline with 2011 Ferguson Prize winners Pamela Long and David McGee--Alan Stahl, not pictured). To submit a nomination, please send one copy of the nominated book to each of the committee members. The deadline for receipt of books is 1 April 2017. If you wish to nominate an item other than a book, please contact the committee chair for instructions on how to submit an official nominations letter.

For more information, please contact the committee chair or Jan Korsten, SHOT Secretary,


2017 Ferguson Prize Committee

The Ferguson Award will next be presented in 2017.

Pamela O. Long (2017–2019)

3100 Connecticut Ave NW Apt 137
Washington, DC 20008-5100

Guillaume de Syon, Chair (2016–2018)
Department of History
Franklin and Marshall College
P.O. Box 3003
Lancaster, PA 17604-3003

Steven Walton (2015-2017)

Department of Social Sciences
Michigan Technological University
209 Academic Office building
Houghton, MI 49931


Previous Recipients of the Ferguson Prize

2015 Patrick T. McBriarty, Chicago River Bridges (University of Illinois Press, 2013)
2013 David C. Brock and Christophe Lécuyer, Makers of the Microchip: A Documentary History of Fairchild Semiconductor (MIT Press and the Chemical Heritage Foundation, 2010)
2011 Pamela O. Long, David B. McGee, Alan M. Stahl, The Book of Michael of Rhodes: A Fifteenth-Century Maritime Manuscript, 3 vol. (Cambridge, Mass: MIT Press, 2009)
2009 John Peter Oleson, The Oxford Handbook of Engineering and Technology in the Classical World (Oxford University Press, 2008)
2007 The Papers of Joseph Henry, ed. Nathan Reingold (vols. 1-5) and Marc Rothenberg (vols. 6-11)
2005 James R. Hansen, ed., The Wind and Beyond: A Documentary Journey into the History of Aerodynamics in America (NASA History Series, 2004)

The Papers of Thomas A. Edison (Johns Hopkins University Press)


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