Citadel historian wins distinguished book prize
David L. Preston, associate professor of history at The Citadel, won the prestigious Albert B. Corey Prize for 2010 for his recent work, “The Texture of Contact: European and Indian Settler Communities on the Frontiers of Iroquoia, 1667-1783.”
The Corey Prize recognizes the best book on Canadian-American relations or on the history of both countries. The prize is awarded every two years by the American Historical Association and the Canadian Historical Association, the two premier professional organizations for historians in the United States and Canada.
Preston’s book is a landmark study of Iroquois and European communities and coexistence in eastern North America before the American Revolution. While many works on early American history emphasize frontier violence and warfare, Preston richly describes the ways in which European and Iroquois settlers on the frontiers creatively adapted to each other’s presence, weaving webs of mutually beneficial social, economic, and religious relationships that sustained the peace for most of the eighteenth century.
The prize committee commended Preston for “putting community relations at the heart of this clearly written, innovative study.” Dr. Barbara D. Metcalf, president of the American Historical Association, presented Preston with the award at the association’s annual meeting in Boston, in January.
While on sabbatical leave this spring, Preston is researching his second book that sheds new light on the Battle of Braddock’s Defeat in 1755. He has two research fellowships at the Massachusetts Historical Society in Boston and the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History in New York City. The book is under contract with Oxford University Press. It is slated to be published in a book series entitled “Pivotal Moments in American History.” The series is edited by the Pulitzer-prize winning historians David Hackett Fischer and James M. McPherson, who have written extensively on the American Revolution and the Civil War.