The Kemper and Leila Williams Prize in Louisiana History, offered annually by The Historic New Orleans Collection and the Louisiana Historical Association since 1974, recognizes excellence in research and writing on Louisiana. The prize, which includes a cash award of $1,500 and a plaque, is presented each March at the LHA’s annual meeting.

The 2019 Winner
Sophie White, Voices of the Enslaved: Love, Labor, and Longing in French Louisiana (Omohundro Institute of Early American History and Culture/University of North Carolina Press)

Nominations: The Williams Prize Committee invites nominations of works published in the 2018 calendar year exploring any aspect of Louisiana history and culture, or placing Louisiana subjects in a regional, national, or international context. Submit four (4) copies of the nominated work AND four (4) copies of the nomination form to the address listed on the form.

Deadline: Nominations for the 2020 Williams Prize are due January 15, 2021. The prize committee encourages authors and presses to submit works throughout the year as they are published. Authors should contact their publishers to insure timely submission. Late submissions will not be considered.


The Dianne Woest Fellowship in the Arts and Humanities supports scholarly research on the history and culture of Louisiana and the Gulf South. While THNOC resources should play a central role in the proposed research agenda, fellows are also encouraged to explore other research facilities in the Greater New Orleans area.

The Woest Fellowship is open to doctoral candidates, academic and museum professionals, and independent scholars. U.S. citizenship is not required, but applicants should be fluent in English.  Fellows will be expected to acknowledge THNOC in any published work drawing on fellowship research. Applicants are considered without regard to race, color, religion, national origin, gender, age, disability, or any other protected status.

We regret to announce that the 2021–22 Dianne Woest Fellowship in the Arts and Humanities at The Historic New Orleans Collection will be cancelled due to the continuing uncertainties associated with travel, housing, and on-site research during the COVID-19 pandemic. We apologize for any inconvenience, and we look forward to considering applications for the 2022–23 Woest Fellowship program.

Stipend: The fellowship includes a stipend of $4,000. Fellows may select their period(s) of residence, but all research must commence and conclude during the specified fellowship term.

Deadline: Applications for the 2022–23 Woest Fellowship will be due on a date to be determined. Please continue to check this site for details.

To Apply: Applicants are encouraged to familiarize themselves with THNOC’s resources by visiting the Research page and browsing our holdings via our online public access catalog. Fellowship applications may be downloaded from the website. For more information, consult our FAQ, or contact Jason Wiese at (504) 598-7183.

The Historic New Orleans Collection gratefully acknowledges the generosity of Dianne Audrey Woest (1935–2003), a graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University, former president of the New Orleans Council for International Visitors, and true friend of the arts. Through a planned giving arrangement, Woest designated The Collection as a beneficiary of her estate.


THNOC congratulates the 2020–21 class of Woest Fellows, whose projects reflect the breadth of our institutional holdings and sustain the tradition of scholarly merit established by previous fellowship recipients.

  • Dr. Thomas Adams (University of Sydney), “Robert Charles' Worlds: Labor, Migration, and the Political Economy of Jim Crow New Orleans”
     
  • Mr. Philippe Halbert (Yale University), “Louisiana Purchases: Consumption, Complexion, and Creolization in Colonial New Orleans”
     
  • Mr. Kyle Jackson (University of California Berkeley), “The Gateway City: Nineteenth-Century New Orleans and the Expansion of Pan-American Capitalism”