Western Heritage Awards

For more information about the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum, sponsor of these awards, click here.

2018
Western novel: Stranded : a story of frontier survival by Matthew P. Mayo
Poetry: Wooden Lions by Karla Morton
Art/Photography: Once upon a time . . . The Western : a new frontier in art and film, edited by Thomas Brent Smith and Mary-Dailey Desmarais
Nonfiction: Lakota performers in Europe : their culture and the artifacts they left behind by Steve Friesen
Juvenile: Lotta Crabtree : gold rush fairy star by Lois V. Harris

2017
Western novel: Robert B. Parker's Blackjack by Robert Knott
Poetry: Woe to the land shadowing : poems by Red Shuttleworth
Art/Photography: Pure quill : photographs by Barbara Van Cleve by Susan Hallsten McGarry
Nonfiction: American Serengeti : the last big animals of the Great Plains by Dan Flores
Juvenile: The green colt by S. J. Dahlstrom
Art books: Painted journeys : the art of John Mix Stanley by Peter H. Hassrick & Mindy N. Besaw

2016
Western novel: Endangered : a Joe Pickett novel by C.J. Box
Poetry: Woe to the land shadowing : poems by Red Shuttleworth
Photography: Laguna pueblo : a photographic history by Lee Marmon & Tom Corbett
Nonfiction: The Western Cattle Trail 1874-1897, its rise, collapse, and revival by Gary & Margaret Kraisinger
Juvenile: Texas Tales illustrated : the trail drives by Mike Kearby
Art books: Painted journeys : the art of John Mix Stanley by Peter H. Hassrick & Mindy N. Besaw

2015
Western novel: The poacher's daughter by Michael Zimmer
Poetry: The goatherd by Larry D. Thomas
Photography: Wilderness by Debra Bloomfield
Nonfiction: A Lakota war book from the Little Bighorn : the pictographic "autobiography of Half Moon" by Castle McLaughlin
Juvenile: How the West was drawn : women's art by Linda L. Osmundson
Art books: Montana's Charlie Russell : art in the collection of the Montana Historical Society by Jennifer Bottomly-O'Looney and Kirby Lambert

2014
Western novel: The son by Philipp Meyer
Poetry: Brushstrokes and balladeers, edited by Caroline Joy "CJ" Hadley
Photography: A family of the land : the Texas photography of Guy Gillette by Andy Wilkinson
Nonfiction: Global West, American frontier : travel, empire and exceptionalism from Manifest Destiny to the Great Depression by David M. Wrobel
Juvenile: Grandma's santo on its head : stories of days gone by in Hispanic villages of New Mexico = El santo patas arriba de mi abuelita : cuentos de días gloriosos en pueblitos hispanos de Nuevo México  by Nasario Garcia
Art books: Karl Bodmer's America revisited : landscape views across time photography by Robert M. Lindholm ; introduction and annotations by W. Raymond Wood and Robert M. Lindholm

2013
Western novel: Unbroke horses by D. B. Jackson
Poetry: Proclaiming space by John Dofflemeyer
Photography: Greatest Photographs of the American West : capturing 125 years of majesty, spirit, and adventure
Nonfiction: Geronimo by Robert Utley
Juvenile: The quilt walk by Sandra Dallas
Art books: Bob Kuhn : drawing on instinct by Bob Kuhn

2012

Western novel: rode by Thomas Fox Averill
Poetry: Married into it by Patricia Frolander
Photography: Shooting from the hip : photographs and essays by J. Don Cook
Nonfiction: After Custer : loss and transformation in Sioux country by Paul L. Hedren
Juvenile: Milagro of the Spanish bean pot by Emerita Romero-Anderson
Art books: The Eugene B. Adkins collection : selected works by B. Byron Price, et.al

2011
Western novel: Impatient with desire : the lost journal of Tamsen Donner by Gabrielle Burton
Poetry: Spare parts by Ken Hada
Photography: Life at the Kiowa, Comanche, and Wichita Agency : the photographs of Annette Ross Hume by Kristina L. Southwell and John R. Lovett
Nonfiction: So rugged and mountainous : blazing the trails to Oregon and California, 1812-1848 by Will Bagley
Juvenile: Off like the wind! : the first ride of the pony express by Michael P. Spradlin, illustrated by Layne Johnson
Art books: Robert Lougheed : follow the sun by Don Hedgpeth

2010
Western novel: The sundown chaser by Dusty Richards
Poetry: Work is love made visible : poems and family photographs by Jeanetta Calhoun Mish
Photography: Ghost Ranch and the faraway nearby by Craig Varjabedian
Nonfiction: The last Indian war : the Nez Perce story by Elliott West
Juvenile: Bull rider by Suzanne Morgan Williams
Art books: The masterworks of Charles M. Russell : a retrospective of paintings and sculpture by Joan Carpenter Troccoli

2009
Western novel: Jackalope dreams by Mary Clearman Blew
Poetry: Poems from Dry Creek by John Dofflemyer
Photography: American farmer : the heart of our country, photographed by Paul Mobley, written by Katrina Fried
Nonfiction: The North American journals of Prince Maximilian of Wied, volume 1, edited by Stephen S. Witte & Marsha V. Gallagher
Juvenile: Journey to Gonzales by Melodie A. Cuate
Art books: In contemporary rhythm : the art of Ernest L. Blumenschein by Peter H. Hassrick, Elizabeth J. Cunningham, Lewis I. Sharp, and Cathy L. Wright

2008
Western novel: Harpsong by Rilla Askew
Poetry: Ludlow : a verse-novel by David Mason
Photography: Eye of the West by Nancy Wood
Nonfiction: For the love of a horse by Max Evans
Juvenile: Journey to San Jacinto by Melodie A. Cuate
Art books: Charles M. Russell : a catalogue raisonné, edited by B. Byron Price

2007
Western novel: Broken trail by Alan Geoffrion
Poetry: The last buffalo by Bruce Roseland
Photography: Lasting light : 125 years of Grand Canyon photography by Stephen Trimble
Nonfiction: The worst hard time : the untold story of those who survived the great American dust bowl by Timothy Egan
Juvenile: Into the West : from Reconstruction to the final days of the American frontier by James M. McPherson

2006
Western novel: Buffalo Calf Road Woman : the story of a warrior of the Little Bighorn by Rosemary Agonito and Joseph Agonito
Poetry: Refuge of whirling light by Mary Beath
Photography: Revealing character : Texas tintypes by Robb Kendrick
Nonfiction: Charlie Siringo's West : an interpretive biography by Howard Lamar
Juvenile: Westward Ho! : eleven explorers of the American West by Charlotte Foltz Jones
Art books: Thomas Moran's West : chromolithography, high art, and popular taste by Joni L. Kinsey

2005
Western novel: And not to yield by Randy Lee Eickhoff
Poetry: Cloud seeding by Stacy Gillett Coyle
Photography: Four Corners by Debra Bloomfield
Nonfiction: The Oregon Trail : an American saga by David Dary
Juvenile: The good rainbow road = Rawa 'kashtyaa'tsi hiyaani : a Native American tale in Keres and English, followed by a translation into Spanish by Simon J. Ortiz
Art books: Joe Beeler : life of a cowboy artist by Don Hedgpeth

2004
Western novel: Spark on the prairie : the trial of the Kiowa chiefs by Johnny Boggs
Poetry: Harm : poems by Miles Wilson
Nonfiction: American massacre : the tragedy at Mountain Meadows, September 11, 1857 by Sally Denton
Juvenile: The long way West by Hershell H. Nixon
Art books: Frederic Remington : the color of night by Nancy K. Anderson

2003
Western novel: Moon of bitter cold by Frederick J. Chiaventone
Poetry: Amazing grace by Larry D. Thomas
Nonfiction: Singing in the saddle : the history of the singing cowboy by Douglas B. Green
Juvenile: The great storm : the hurricane diary of J. T. King, Galveston, Texas, 1900 by Lisa Waller Rogers
Art books: Cowboy Artists of America by Michael Duty

2002
Western novel: The master executioner by Loren D. Estleman
Poetry: Blood sister, I am to these fields : new and selected poems by Linda Hussa
Nonfiction: Buffalo for the Broken Heart : restoring life to a Black Hills ranch by Dan O'Brien
Juvenile: Delfino's journey by Jo Harper
Art books: Philip R. Goodwin : America's sporting and wildlife artist by Larry Len Peterson

2001
Western novel: The gates of the Alamo : a novel by Stephen Harrigan
Poetry: Bitter Creek Junction by Linda Hasselstrom
Nonfiction: The American West : a new interpretive history by Rovert V. Hine and John Mack Faragher
Juvenile: Precious gold, precious jade by Sharon E. Heisel
Art books: Cowpuncher : cowboyin' in the Southwest by Kurt Markus

2000
Western novel: The contract surgeon : a novel by Dan O'Brien
Poetry: Whatever the wind delivers : celebrating West Texas and the Near Southwest by Walt McDonald and Janet Neugebauer
Nonfiction: The real wild west : the 101 Ranch and the creation of the American West by Michael Wallis
Juvenile: The birchbark house by Louise Erdrich
Art books: Charles M. Russell, legacy : printed and published works of Montana's Cowboy artist by Larry Len Peterson

1999
Western novel: Journey of the dead by Loren D. Estleman
Poetry: My cowboy's gift by Andy Wilkinson
Nonfiction: The new encyclopedia of the American West, edited by Howard Roberts Lamar
Juvenile: Alice Rose & Sam : a novel by Kathryn Lasky
Art books: An encyclopedia of women artists of the American West by Phil Kovinick and Marian Yoshiki-Kovinick

1998
Western novel: The mercy seat : a novel by Rilla Askew
Poetry: The medicine keepers, by J. B. Allen
Nonfiction: The hunter's game : poachers and conservationists in twentieth-century America by Louis S. Warren
Juvenile: Daughter of Suqua by Diane Johnston Hamm
Art books: Thomas Moran by Nancy K. Anderson

1997
Western novel: Out Of Eden : a novel by Kate Lehrer
Poetry: All this way for the short ride : roughstock sonnets, 1971-1996 : poems by Paul Zarzyski
Nonfiction: Re-imagining the modern American West : a century of fiction, history, and art by Richard W. Etulain
Juvenile: The West : an illustrated history for children by Dayton Duncan
Art books: Thomas Moran, the field sketches, 1856-1923 by Anne Morand

1996
Western novel: A sweetness to the soul by Jane Kirkpatrick
Poetry: Between earth and sky : poets of the cowboy West, edited by Anne Heath Widmark
Nonfiction: The way to the West : essays on the Central Plains by Elliott West
Juvenile: The night the grandfathers danced by Linda Theresa Raczek, illustrated by Katalin Olah Ehling
Art books: Independent spirits : women painters of the American West, 1890-1945, edited by Patricia Trenton

1995
Western novel: Bluefeather Fellini in the sacred realm by Max Evans
Poetry: The red drum : poetry of the American West by Jane Candia Coleman
Nonfiction: The Oxford history of the American West, edited by Clyde A. Milner II, Carol A. O'Connor, and Martha A. Sandweiss
Juvenile: Eagle drum : on the powwow trail with a young grass dancer by Robert Crum
Art books: Charles M. Russell, sculptor by Rick Stewart

1994
Western novel: Pigs in heaven : a novel by Barbara Kingsolver
Poetry: Buckaroo : visions and voices of the American cowboy, edited by Thomas West and Hal Cannon
Nonfiction: North American cattle-ranching frontiers : origins, diffusion, and differentiation by Terry G. Jordan
Juvenile: Cowboys, Indians, and gunfighters : the story of the cattle kingdom by Albert Marrin
Art books: Charles M. Russell, word painter : letters 1887-1926 by Brian W. Dippie

1993
Western novel: All the pretty horses by Cormac McCarthy
Poetry: All that matters : the Texas plains in photographs and poems, photographs of the Southwest Collection selected by Janet M. Neugebauer ; new and selected poems by Walter McDonald
Nonfiction: The Spanish frontier in North America by David J. Weber
Juvenile: An Indian winter by Russell Freedman
Art books: The art of Howard Terpning by Elmer Kelton

1992
Western novel: Set for life : a novel by Judith Freeman
Poetry: The digs in Escondido Canyon by Walter McDonald
Nonfiction: "It's your misfortune and none of my own" : a new history of the American West by Richard White
Juvenile: Monster slayer : a Navajo folktale by Vee Brown, illustrated by Baje Whitehorne
Art books: Albert Bierstadt : art & enterprise by Nancy K. Anderson and Linda S. Ferber

1991
Western novel: Buffalo girls : a novel by Larry McMurtry
Poetry: No roof but sky : poetry of the American West by Jane Candia Coleman
Nonfiction: Cowboys of the Americas by Richard W. Slatta
Juvenile: Bunkhouse journal by Diane Johnston Hamm
Art books: Art of the Golden West by Alan Axelrod

1990
Western novel: Broken Eagle by Chad Oliver
Poetry: Rafting the Brazos by Walter McDonald
Nonfiction: Growing up with the country : childhood on the far-western frontier by Elliot West
Juvenile: Letters to Oma : a young German girl's account of her first year in Texas, 1847 by Marj Gurasich
Art books: Watt Matthews of Lambshead by Laura Wilson

1989
Western novel: The homesman by Glendon Swarthout
Poetry: Pomo dawn of song by Lois Prante Stevens and Jewell Malm Newburn
Nonfiction: Cavalier in buckskin : George Armstrong Custer and the western military frontier by Robert Marshall Utley
Juvenile: Stay put, Robbie McAmis by Frances G. Tunbo
Art books: Beyond tradition : contemporary Indian art and its evolution by Lois Essary Jacka and Jerry D. Jacka

1988
Western novel: The man who rode midnight by Elmer Kelton
Nonfiction: High noon in Lincoln : violence on the western frontier by Robert Marshall Utley
Juvenile: The covered wagon and other adventures by Lynn H. Scott
Art books: The song of the loom : new traditions in Navajo weaving by Frederick J. Dockstander

1987
Western novel: Heart of the country by Greg Matthews
Poetry: Songs of the sage : the poetry of Curley Fletcher, edited by Hal Cannon
Nonfiction: The mythic West in twentieth-century America by Robert G. Athearn
Juvenile: Happily may I walk : American Indians and Alaska natives today by Arlene B. Hirshfelder
Art books: The Arts of the North American Indian : native traditions in evolution, edited by Edwin L. Wade

1986
Western novel: Playing catch-up by A. B. Guthrie, Jr.
Poetry: Cowboy poetry : a gathering by Hal Cannon
Nonfiction: Bob Sharp's Cattle country : rawhide ranching on both sides of the border by Robert L. Sharp
Juvenile: Prairie songs by Pam Conrad
Art books: Richard H. Kern : expeditionary artist in the far Southwest, 1848-1853 by David J. Weber

1985
Western novel: English Creek by Ivan Doig
Nonfiction: The great father : the United States government and the American Indians by Francis Paul Prucha
Art books: Riders across the centuries : horsemen of the Spanish borderlands by Jose Cisneros

1984
Western novel: The long riders' winter by Frank Calkins
Nonfiction: Atlas of the Lewis & Clark Expedition, edited by Gary E. Moulton
Juvenile: Children of the Wild West by Russell Freedman
Art books: The beat of the drum and the whoop of the dance : a study of the life and work of Joseph Henry Sharp by Forrest Fenn

1983
Nonfiction: A passion for freedom : the life of Sharlot Hall, by Margaret Maxwell; A Will Rogers treasury : reflections and observations by Will Rogers
Art books: Vanishing breed : photographs of the cowboy and the West by William Albert Allard

1982
Nonfiction: Saddles by Russell H. Beatie; Cowboy culture : a saga of five centuries by David Dary
Art books: Harry Jackson by Larry Pointer and Donald Goddard

1981
Nonfiction: Bartlett Richards, Nebraska Sandhills cattleman, by Bartlett Richards; Gold dust by Donald Jackson
Art books: Taos, a painter's dream by Patricia Janis Broder

1980
Western novel: Hanta yo by Ruth Beebe Hill
Nonfiction: The plains across : the overland emigrants and the trans-Mississippi West, 1840-60 by John D. Unruh Jr.
Juvenile: The Little house cookbook : frontier foods from Laura Ingalls Wilder's classic stories by Barbara M. Walker
Art books: Sacred paint : Ned Jacob by Sandra Dallas

1979
Western novel: The good old boys by Elmer Kelton
Nonfiction: Buffalo Bill : his family, friends, fame, failures, and fortunes by Nellie Irene Snyder Yost
Juvenile: The obstinate land by Harold Keith
Art books: The painter lady : Grace Carpenter Hudson by Searles R. Boynton

1978
Western novel: Buffalo woman by Dorothy M. Johnson
Nonfiction: Geronimo : the man, his time, his place by Angie Debo; Tim McCoy remembers the West : an autobiography by Time McCoy and Ronald McCoy
Art books: Ross Stefan : an impressionistic painter of the contemporary Southwest, by John K. Goodman

1977
No awards

1976
Nonfiction: Fifty great Western illustrators : a bibliographic checklist by Jeff C. Dykes; Charles F. Lummis : the man and his West by Turbesé Lummis Fiske and Keith Lummis; Butte's memory book by Don James
Juvenile: Owl in the cedar tree by N. Scott Momaday
Art books: Hans Kleiber : artist of the Bighorn Mountains by Emmie D. Mygatt and Roberta Carkeek Cheney

1975
Western novel: Centennial by James A. Michener
Nonfiction: The Warren wagontrain raid; the first complete account of an historic Indian attack and its aftermath by Benjamin Capps; Idaho : a pictorial overview, by Robert O. Beatty; Born grown : an Oklahoma City history by Roy P. Stewart; Colonel Greene and the copper skyrocket, by C. L. Sonnichsen
Juvenile: Susy's scoundrel by Harold Keith
Art books: Edward Borein, cowboy artist; the life and works of John Edward Borein, 1872-1945 by Harold G. Davison

1974
Western novel: The time it never rained, by Elmer Kelton
Nonfiction: Bell Ranch as I knew it by George F. Ellis; Will Rogers, his life and times by Richard M. Ketchum; Owyhee trails; the West's forgotten corner by Mike Hanley and Ellis
Lucia; Colorado Summer/Fall/Winter/Spring by David Muench and N. Scott Momaday
Art books: The lure of the great West by Frank Getlein

1973
Western novel: Chiricahua by Will Henry
Poetry: The Donner party by George Keithley
Nonfiction: The time of the buffalo by Tom McHugh
Art books: Harold von Schmidt draws and paints the Old West by Walt Reed

1972
Western novel: Pike's Peak : a family saga by Frank Waters
Nonfiction: North America divided; the Mexican War, 1846-1848 by Odie B. Faulk and Seymour V. Connor
Juvenile: The black mustanger by Richard Edward Wormser
Art books: The art of the Old West, from the collection of the Gilcrease Institute by Paul A. Rossi and David C. Hunt

1971
Western novel: Arfive by A.B. Guthrie
Nonfiction: The great range wars : violence on the grasslands by Harry Sinclair Drago
Juvenile: And one was a wooden Indian by Betty Baker
Art books: Where your heart is; the story of Harvey Dunn, artist by Robert F. Karolevitz

1970
Western novel: The white man's road, by Benjamin Capps
Nonfiction: The great Platte River road: the covered wagon mainline via Fort Kearny to Fort Laramie by Merrill J. Mattes
Juvenile: An awful name to live up to by Jessie Hosford
Art books: Olaf Wieghorst by William Reed

1969
Western novel: The buffalo runners by Fred Grove
Nonfiction: The cattle towns by Robert R. Dykstra; The enduring Navaho by Laura Gilpin
Juvenile: Edge of two worlds by Weyman B. Jones
Art books: The cowboy in art by Edward Maddin Ainsworth

1968
Western novel: North to yesterday by Robert Flynn
Nonfiction: America's western frontiers; the exploration and settlement of the Trans-Mississippi West by John Arkas Hawgood
Juvenile: Down the rivers, westward ho!, by Eric Scott
Art books: George Caleb Bingham by E. Maurice Bloch

1967
Western novel: They came to a valley, by Bill Gulick
Nonfiction: Gold fever, being a true account, both horrifying and hilarious, of the art of healing (so-called) during the California gold rush by George W. Groh
Juvenile: Mustang; wild spirit of the West by Marguerite Henry

1966
Western novel: Mountain man by Vardis Fisher
Nonfiction: The American heritage history of the Great West by Alvin M. Josephy Jr.
Juvenile: Land rush by Carl G. Hodges

1965
Western novel: Little big man : a novel by Thomas Berger
Nonfiction: Standing up country: the canyon lands of Utah and Arizona by C. Gregory Crampton
Juvenile: The greatest cattle drive by Paul Iselin Wellman

1964
Western novel: Honor thy father by Robert A. Roripaugh
Nonfiction: Furs by Astor by John Upton Terrell
Juvenile: Killer-of-death by Betty Baker

1963
Western novel: Fire on the mountain by Edward Abbey
Nonfiction: Where the old West stayed young by John Rolfe Burroughs
Juvenile: The book of the West by Charles Clifton

1962
Western novel: The shadow catcher by James David Horan
Nonfiction: The American Heritage Book of Indians by Alvin M. Josephy Jr.
Juvenile: King of the mountain by Gene Caesar