The Sarah Josepha Hale Award, presented annually since 1956, is a New England award given by the trustees of the Richards Free Library, Newport, New Hampshire, in recognition of a distinguished body of work in the field of literature and letters.
Named for Sarah Josepha Hale, the award honors the contribution of one of America’s most powerful women of the Nineteenth Century. The Newport author of several books and hundreds of poems shaped the opinion of American women for forty years through her editorials in Godey’s Lady’s Magazine.
The award consists of a bronze medal and $2500.00 honorarium with funding provided by the Holden-Yeomans Memorial Fund.
Selection is handled by a national Board of Judges and may not be applied for either by author or publisher. Judges submit nominations under the following criteria.
- Nominees Must have been born in New England, or reside here for a least part of the year as a regular practice.
- Nominees should be a literary person (poet, dramatist, novelist, historian, journalist, writer, etc.).
- Nominee must, if he/she doesn’t meet the conditions of birth and residence, be associated primarily with New England through his/her work.
- The award is based on the full body of the nominee’s work.
- Nominees must be able and willing to be present at the award ceremony and deliver a talk or reading of twenty to forty minutes duration.
A list of medalists can be found here.