SAH Publication Awards

Every year, the Society of Architectural Historians presents awards that recognize the most distinguished publications in architectural history, urban history, landscape history, preservation, and architectural exhibition catalogues. SAH also presents the Founders' Award for an outstanding JSAH article written by an emerging scholar in the previous two years. 

Nominations for the 2021 award cycle will open on June 2, 2020. 



The Alice Davis Hitchcock Book Award was established in 1949 to recognize annually the most distinguished work of scholarship in the history of architecture published by a North American scholar.

Hitchcock Award Past Recipients

2020 Recipient:

Peter H. Christensen
Germany and the Ottoman Railways: Art, Empire and Infrastructure
Yale University Press, 2017


For some time, preservationists have been involved in investigating and evaluating the physical fabric of this country and other nations. In order to encourage further research and publication of research in this field, the Society of Architectural Historians has established an annual award for excellence in a published work devoted to historical topics in preservation. Named for Antoinette Forrester Downing, the award honors her scholarship and recognition of the value of local inventories and surveys.

Downing Award Past Recipients

2020 Recipient:

Sally McMurry
Pennsylvania Farming: A History in Landscapes
University of Pittsburgh Press, 2017


As architectural history exhibitions are able to address historical and critical questions in special ways, through the presentation of both documentation and artifacts to a diversified audience, so their catalogues have become distinctive vehicles for the expression of scholarship in architectural history. They remain as the substantial and enduring contribution after the life of the exhibition is spent. In order, therefore, to recognize and encourage excellence in this form of scholarship and publication, the Society of Architectural Historians established its annual Philip Johnson Exhibition Catalogue Award.

Johnson Award Past Recipients

2020 Recipient:

Jennifer Dunlop Fletcher and Joseph Becker, editors
The Sea Ranch: Architecture, Environment, and Idealism
San Francisco Museum of Modern Art and DelMonico Books • Prestel, 2018


This award was established in 1993 at the Society's Annual Meeting in Albuquerque, in recognition of Spiro Kostof's extraordinarily productive and inspiring career that was ended by his premature death in December 1991. In the spirit of Kostof's writings, the award will be given to interdisciplinary studies of urban history that make the greatest contribution to our understanding of the growth and development of cities.

Kostof Award Past Recipients

2020 Recipients:

Samia Henni
Architecture of Counterrevolution: The French Army in Northern Algeria
Zurich: ETH/gta Verlage, 2017

Pamela O. Long
Engineering the Eternal City: Infrastructure, Topography, and the Culture of Knowledge in Late Sixteenth-Century Rome
Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2018


The Elisabeth Blair MacDougall Book Award was established by the SAH Board in 2005 to recognize annually the most distinguished work of scholarship in the history of landscape architecture or garden design. Named for SAH past president and landscape historian Elisabeth MacDougall, the award honors the late historian's role in developing this field of study.

MacDougall Award Past Recipients

2020 Recipient:

Wilhelmina F. Jashemski (1910-2007), Kathryn L. Gleason, Kim J. Hartswick, Amina-Aicha Malek, editors
Gardens of the Roman Empire
Cambridge University Press, 2018


The Founders' Award is given annually for an article published by an emerging scholar in the preceding two years in the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians that exhibits excellence of scholarship and presentation. For the purposes of this award, an "emerging scholar" is defined as someone under the age of 40 or within five years of the completion of a terminal degree at the time of submission of the article. Authors will be asked by the JSAH editor whether they are eligible, and if eligible, authors will be asked to submit a curriculum vitae.

Criteria for Award
  1. Publication in the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians during previous two years Articles from the December issue may be forwarded in galley form. 
  2. Excellence of scholarship and presentation
Upon publication of each issue of the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Founders Award application materials are sent to all eligible JSAH authors. Those interested in being considered for this award are asked to submit a CV to the JSAH editor immediately upon receipt.

Founders' Award Past Recipients

2020 Recipient:

Michael Abrahamson
“Actual Center of Detroit”: Method, Management, and Decentralization in Albert Kahn's General Motors Building
Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians, Vol. 77 No. 1, March 2018


SAH thanks The Richard H. Driehaus Foundation
for its operating support.
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