The Museum of African American History is dedicated to preserving, conserving and accurately interpreting the contributions of African Americans in New England from the colonial period through the 19th century.





MAAH Stone Book Award

About the Award


The 2018 MAAH Stone Book Award celebrates writing on the subject of African American history and culture by awarding a $25,000 prize to the author of an exceptional adult non-fiction book written in a literary style. The award will be presented at Boston’s African Meeting House.


Award Objectives:


    • To recognize new literary work in the field of African American history and culture
    • To nurture and inspire future scholarly writing in the field
    • To reinforce the necessity of continuously examining history
    • To foster community engagement and dialogue centered around a widely accessible new literary work
    • To celebrate the joy of learning through reading in partnership with an appreciation of the American historical, cultural artifacts held by the museum to tell stories of the African American experience
    • To celebrate the history of the successful abolitionist movement that began in Boston and the unity between races that it exemplified and fostered



2018 Submission Rules & Guidelines



  1. All books must have been published in the U.S. with a publication date between April 1, 2017 and March 31, 2018.
  2. All books must be printed in English. Translations are not eligible.
  3. All authors must be U.S. residents.
  4. Books must be submitted by publishers and literary agents only. Books may not be submitted for consideration directly by the author.
  5. Neither self-published works, where the author is the publisher, nor e-books are eligible for this award. Textbooks and anthologies are not eligible. Co-authored books are not eligible.
  6. All books must be adult non-fiction. Graphic novels are not eligible.
  7. Books must be submitted for consideration via our online submission process at between March 1, 2018 and March 31, 2018. A high-resolution image (at least 300 dpi) of the book cover, and a high-resolution photo and short biography of the author will need to be uploaded during the online submission process as well.
  8. Physical copies of the books must be received by April 15, 2018.
  9. Four (4) printed copies of the book (galley proofs are acceptable) must be mailed at the publisher’s/literary agent’s expense to:

    The MAAH Stone Book Award

    c/o Rasky Partners

    70 Franklin St, 3rd Floor

    Boston, MA 02110

  10. Submitted copies of the books will NOT be returned.
  11. The MAAH Stone Book Award reserves the right to call for additional submissions after April 15, 2018.
  12. There is no submission fee in this inaugural year of the award.


Judging Process

The Museum reserves the right to decline submissions it deems unacceptable. These books will not be returned.


A jury of three academic scholars will review eligible, acceptable submissions and determine the winner.



Author Responsibilites


The author must be present at the award ceremony (Summer 2018; date TBD) to accept to prize. Travel to the award ceremony and lodging will be at the expense of the submitting agency, i.e., publisher or literary agent.


The winning author must agree to participate in at least two public events that will be organized by the Museum – one in Boston and one on Nantucket Island – both of which will take place within 1 week of the award ceremony. Expenses related to these Museum-sponsored events (lodging and travel) will be covered by the Museum.


Honorary Committee


Sara Lawrence-Lightfoot, Chair

Professor, Harvard Graduate School of Education


A'Lelia Bundles

Vice-Chairman, Columbia University Boars of Trustees


Evelyn Brooks Higginbotham

Professor, Harvard University Department of History


Paula Johnson

President, Wellesley


Suzanne Nossel

Chief Executive Officer, PEN America


Cathleen Douglas Stone

President, James M. and Cathleen D. Stone Foundation


Darren Walker

President, Ford Foundation


John Taylor "Ike" Williams

Director, Kneerim & Williams Literary & Dramatic Rights Agency



Contact Us:

Comments, questions, feedback?  Let us know!

Pamela Waterman

Book Award Administrator

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