Murrin Prize Winners

The John M. Murrin Essay Prize is awarded for the best article published in Early American Studies each year. Murrin, an early American historian who spent most of his career at Princeton University, was a dedicated and stalwart member of the McNeil Center for Early American Studies community from its founding. The prize is awarded to honor his mastery of the essay form. 

The following is a comprehensive list of Murrin Prize winners from 2011 to present:

Title Author Season, Year
“‘Canoes of Great Swiftness’: Rivercraft and War in the Northeast” Zachary M. Bennett Spring 2023
“Land, Fur, and Copper: The Union of Settler Colonialism and Industrial Capitalism in the Great Lakes Region, 1815–1842”

Gustave Lester

Honorable Mention

Winter 2023
“That she shall forever be banished from this country”: Alcohol, Sovereignty, and Social Segregation in New Netherland Erin Kramer Winter 2022
“Brought from the Palenques”: Race, Subjecthood, and Warfare in the Seventeenth-Century Caribbean

Casey Schmitt

Honorable Mention

Fall 2022
Sintsincks to Sing Sing: Empire the War of 1812, and the Transformation of U.S. Prisons

Lee Bernstein

Honorable Mention

Spring 2022
Facing Race: Popular Science and Black Intellectual Thought in Antebellum America Rachel Walker Spring 2021
Enquire of the Printer: Newspaper Advertising and the Moral Economy of the North American Slave Trade, 1704–1807 Jordan Taylor Summer 2020
Remembering Napoleon: Americans and the French Emperor in the 1820s and 1830s

Nadine Klopfer

Honorable Mention

Fall 2020
The Constitutional Consequences of Commercial Crisis: The Role of Trade Reconsidered in the “Critical Period”

Dael Norwood

Honorable Mention

Fall 2020
Sailing on Paper: The Embellished Bill of Lading in the Material Atlantic, 1720-1864 Hannah Farber Winter 2019
Frontiers of Grain: Indigenous Maize, Afroeurasian Wheat, and the Origins of Industrial Food

Natale Zappia

Honorable Mention

Spring 2019
“Your Mother Gave Birth to a Pig”: Power, Abuse, and Planter Linguistics in Baudry des Loziere’s Vocabulaire Congo Sara Johnson Winter 2018
Inventing an Indian Slave Conspiracy on Nantucket, 1738 Justin Pope Summer 2017
Timbering and Turtling: The Maritime Hinterlands of Early Modern British Caribbean Cities

Mary Draper

Honorable Mention

Fall 2017
Rediscovering Native North America: Settlements, Maps, and Empires in the Eastern Woodlands Chad Anderson Summer 2016
“A Laudable Spirit of Enterprise”: Renegotiating Land, Natural Resources, and Power on Post-Revolutionary Long Island Jennifer Anderson Spring 2015
Toussaint, Gabriel, and Three Finger’d Jack: “Courageous Chiefs” and the “Sacred Standard of Liberty” on the Atlantic Stage

 Jenna Gibbs 

Honorable Mention

Summer 2015
Rattlesnakes in the Garden: The Fascinating Serpents of the Early, Edenic Republic Zachary McLeod Hutchins  Fall 2011
Spiritual Diplomacy, the Yamasees, and the Society for the Propagation of the Gospel: Reinterpreting Prince George’s Eighteenth-Century Voyage to England Denise Bossy Spring 2014
“One Indian and a Negroe, the first thes Ilands ever had”: Imagining the Archive in Early Bermuda Heather Kopelson Spring 2013
Ecosystems under Sail: Specimen Transport in the Eighteenth-Century French and British Atlantics Christopher M. Parsons & Kathleen S. Murphy Fall 2012
Rattlesnakes in the Garden: The Fascinating Serpents of the Early, Edenic Republic Zachary McLeod Hutchins  Fall 2011