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Samuel D. Isaly Library

611 State Route 97 West
Bellville, OH 44813
Phone: 419-886-1903
Fax: 419-886-0092

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Ohio Genealogical Society - Fellows and Awards

Have you ever wondered how those people end up being recognized for awards at the annual OGS Luncheon? Well, the process starts right here - with YOUR nominees. If you don't tell the committee about those outstanding achievements, we may never hear about them, so come on, SPEAK UP NOW! The OGS Fellows and Awards Committee announce the following awards, which will be presented at the annual OGS Conference. The awards are: Fellow,Outstanding Chapter, Outstanding Chapter Newsletter, Outstanding Chapter Officer, Outstanding Chapter Volunteer, Outstanding Chapter Web Site, and various book awards. Nomination information may be obtained from OGS Fellows & Awards Committee chairman, Marleen Applegate, c/o Ohio Genealogical Society, 611 State Route 97 West, Bellville OH 44813-8813, email awards@ogs.org. To avoid loss, misdirection, or delay, please send all books and entries directly to the committee Chair at the address above, not through the OGS office. All nominations and entries must be received at OGS Headquarters by December 31. For questions, specific judging and book submission criteria, please contact the Chair via email at awards@ogs.org.

Note: Not all awards are given every year.

Fellow Award
The Fellow of The Ohio Genealogical Society Award is given to an individual who has provided valuable service to the Society and to the field of genealogy over and above the job to which they were elected or appointed, through volunteer work, special projects, or their expertise or skill in accomplishing a goal for the Society. No member of the Executive Committee or of the Board of Trustees may be elected as a Fellow of the Society until after the completion of his/her term of office. The person making the nomination must be a member of OGS. Nominations shall cite qualifying services to OGS and shall contain biographical and other pertinent information regarding the nominee. A complete list of OGS Fellows can be found here.

Outstanding OGS Chapter Award
This will be presented to a Chapter that meets the following criteria. Chapters may enter the competition by submitting five copies of a three-page maximum essay. This essay should address the chapter's involvement during the program year in three or more of the following areas:

  • Variety of membership activities throughout the year (e.g., chapter meetings, field trips, lineage societies, OGS conference participation)
  • Contribution or service to genealogical records preservation (e.g., cemetery preservation, publishing, newsletters)
  • Providing assistance/resources to local libraries/repositories
  • Genealogical education of members or the general public (through newsletters, meetings, workshops, website, etc.)
  • Inter/intra Chapter-OGS-local historical society activities, relationships and communications

Outstanding OGS Chapter Newsletter Award - Frances Dana Gage Award
This will be presented to the Chapter newsletter evaluated highest by a panel of five judges. The newsletter will be judged on the following criteria: material interest, variety and originality, genealogical interest, writing and editing quality, readability and attractiveness, and overall publication makeup. The newsletter must be submitted by the Chapter, not by an individual. Five copies of two consecutive issues from the current calendar year must be submitted for consideration and evaluation.

Outstanding OGS Chapter Officer
This award will be presented to a person who has been a Chapter officer during the current Chapter program year and has performed exemplary service to the Chapter. Entries will be judged from a one-page essay submitted by one or more members of the Chapter. Essay should include name, office held, duties expected, other duties performed, and reason the chapter member nominating feels the officer is deserving of the award. Five copies of the essay must be submitted.

Outstanding OGS Chapter Volunteer
This award will be presented to a Chapter member in good standing who has contributed service above and beyond the normal level of Chapter activity during the current Chapter program year. This award will be judged on a one-page essay submitted by one or more members of the Chapter. Essay should include: name, volunteer position(s) held, duties expected, other duties performed, and reason the chapter member nominating feels the member is deserving of the award. Five copies of the essay must be submitted.

Outstanding Chapter Web Site Award - Thomas A. Edison Award
The Thomas A. Edison Award is given for Best OGS Chapter Web Site. No site will be considered without a link from the OGS web site. The OGS Chapter link must be direct to the Chapter site, not through a GenWeb or RootsWeb page, in order for the web site to be eligible for this award. The sites will be judged based on the inclusion of the following required criteria, plus other outstanding features:

  • OGS activities
  • Chapter activities
  • Other genealogy activities (NGS, FGS, other societies)
  • Chapter information - meetings, history, current contact information
  • Local genealogical information/resources

OGS Book Awards
The following awards may be presented:

  • The Simon Kenton Award for transcriptions of Ohio records
  • The Salmon P. Chase Award for abstracts of Ohio records
  • The U.S. Grant Award for finding/research aids (indices, bibliographies)
  • The Tecumseh Award for Ohio-related genealogical instruction books
  • The Henry Howe Award for an Ohio state, county, or local history
  • The William H. & Benjamin Harrison Award for an Ohio-related family history
  • The Lida Flint Harshman Award for a book produced by a Chapter or special interest group of the Society
  • The Governor Thomas Worthington Award for Ohio biography or collective biography
  • The Oliver Hazard Perry Award for Ohio-related military historical record

Book Awards Submission Criteria:
Author or submitter will choose the award category for their publication.

The work must be Ohio related or of significant value to those doing Ohio genealogy.

The work must have been published within a five-year time frame prior to being entered for consideration. Publications may not be submitted more than once unless they were revisions of or additions to books previously published. Revisions/additions published before the five-year time frame will not be considered. Revisions/additions should contain changes substantial enough to warrant consideration.

Transcriptions, abstracts and finding aids must include a preface explaining the records location, type, condition, accessibility and any other relevant details that would assist genealogists in locating and using the original source.

Any family history submitted requires a minimum of five generations presented in narrative form, fully documented with references properly cited.

All submissions must contain an index unless they are self-indexed.

Submissions may be made by the author/editor/compiler or by another person. A donated copy of the book must be given to or already in the possession of the OGS Library.

Entries must reach the OGS Fellows & Awards chair by 31 December in any given year. After judging takes place, all submitters will be contacted in March. Awards will be made at the OGS annual conference.

Four or more volunteer judges will evaluate each book. The Fellows and Awards chair will compile the final scores.

More than one award may be given in any category when the Awards Committee is in unanimous agreement that more than one publication deserves recognition.

Judging of books is based on the following criteria:

  • Is the book well-organized?
  • Is the index adequate and easy to use? If the work is an index, is it arranged in logical sequence? Is it indexed by multiple parameters?
  • If opinions are given, are they clearly indicated as such?
  • Are bibliography/resource lists included?
  • Are the references well-documented? Are sources properly cited? If the work is an index, is proper credit given to the source(s) from which the index was prepared?
  • Could another researcher retrace the steps taken to produce this work?
  • Will it be a significant addition to Ohio genealogical or historical research and/or scholarship?
  • Are any limitations of the references/sources clearly mentioned? (Missing pages, illegible writing, absence of data, missing volumes, etc.)
  • Is the scope of the material presented clearly defined? (Geographic area, time period, purpose, family names, etc.)
  • If illustrated, do the illustrations complement and illuminate the subject matter? Are they appropriately placed within the text?
  • Are necessary abbreviations, legends, symbols, tables, and columns clearly explained and logically arranged?