The Award was established in 1983 with the aim of encouraging family historians to present the results of their research for others to read and enjoy and was first awarded in 1984. It was renamed the Lilian Watson Family History Award in 1996 to honour the memory and the contributions to genealogy and family history of Mrs Lilian Watson who died in March 1996. She was the Foundation Chairman of the Society in 1980 and the first Fellow of the Society, elected in 1995.
The Award is for a book, however produced or published, printed on paper,
dealing with family history and must have a significant Tasmanian content.
In the context of the Lilian Watson Family History Award, a family history should be a work carefully and accurately researched on a single family, group of related families or a biographical history.
A form in which the literary work is made available for reading, printed,
within an enclosed cover and bound.
The history should include an index. Illustrations, that is, photographs, drawings, maps, charts, etc., should be relevant to the text, clear and well-captioned.
Pages of genealogical data in chart or list form should not take up any more than a third of the whole history. Other important inclusions are the table of contents, references and acknowledgment of sources.
Ideally the history should be reproduced in sufficient quantities for either the retail market or private sale among families, and certainly for all to enjoy reading and using. A minimum edition of ten copies is required.
The winner of the Award will receive a suitably inscribed, framed certificate, plus a cheque, the value of which is determined each year by the Society Executive and is currently $200, and one year's subscription to the Society. All other entrants receive a certificate of participation. The name of the winner and of the winning entry are published on this website and in the September edition of Tasmanian Ancestry.
Authors may submit more than one entry and all entries become the property of the Society, authors selecting the Branch library for lodgment. Copyright remains the property of the author unless possession is transferred to the society or elsewhere by a document signed by the author.
A book, however produced or published on paper, dealing with a family or biographical history and having a significant Tasmanian content. Entries close 1 December 2023.
A PDF version of the 2023 Lilian Watson Family History Award brochure may be downloaded here.
Further information and entry forms are available from all TFHS Inc.
Branch Libraries or
email the Award Coordinator
|2022||Book||The Legacy of John Headlam of Egleston, Macquarie River, Tasmania||Carol Bacon|
|2021||Book||The Gatenby Saga: The Story of Andrew Gatenby from Barton and His Descendants. Life Along the PennyRoyal Creek, Tasmania.||David Gatenby and Carol Bacon|
|2020||Book||Risby Ancestors: From convict beginnings||Warwick H. L. Risby|
|2019||Book||The Master of Hell's Gates: William Kinghorne||Chris Maxwell & Alex Pugh|
|2018||Book||From Proteus to Prosterity: In the steps of John Walduck (1809-1886)||Susan G. Scott (editor)|
|2017||Book||Home from War: Stories from the Newstead War Service Homes.||Kaye Simpson and Julienne Richards|
|2016||Book||Sarah Bromley: Success, Sorrow and Scandal in Van Diemen's Land.||Don Bradmore and Judith Carter|
|2015||Book||No award made.|
|2014||Book||Building on firm foundations. The Cooper family in Tasmania: stonemasons, builders and architects.||Lorraine Dooley|
|2013||Book||Pioneers, Ploughmen and Pull-Shots||Cecily Dougan|
|2012||Book||Win & Clyde: side by side in Tasmania's far South West||Janet Fenton|
|2011||Book||Barnard born & bred: Tasmanian branches and Norfolk roots||Jacquie Drohan|
|2010||Book||Making Their Own Way - The Dunbabins on Maria Island 1869-1876||Tom Dunbabin|
|2009||Book||That's the Way It Was: Stories from the Bradmore Family Past||Donald James Bradmore|
|2008||Book||Thomas Diprose and Elizabeth Children Diprose of Kent and
Van Diemen's Land Strangers
(Volume 1 book & Volume 2 CD-ROM)
|Elizabeth Parkes and Jean Doggett|
|2007||Book||Sergeant Samuel Thorne, A Royal Marine in the Napoleonic Wars and a first settler of Port Phillip and Hobart Town||Malcolm Ward|
|2006||Book||She lived in Launceston: Isobel Horner of Waratah House||Sally Dammery|
|2005||Book||The Bidencope Story||Irene Schaffer|
|2004||Book||Madge's People in the island of Tasmania||Rosemary Brown|
|2003||Book||Holycross; the story of the O'Mara family||Judith Borrick|
|2002||Book||James Fenton of Forth : A Tasmanian Pioneer 1820-1901||Paul Fenton|
|2001||Book||Buttons, Bodices, Braces and Britches||Alan Dyer|
|2000||Book||Cattle King of Van Diemen's Land, William Field (1774-1837)||Claudia M Dean|
|1999||Commercially published book||The von Bibra Story||Louis Nyman and Graeme von Bibra|
|1998||Manuscript||The Story of John and Elizabeth Carey||Allison Carins|
|From Shere to Eternity; a History of the Moody family of Van Diemen's Land||John Meehan|
|1996||Commercially published book||Of Yesteryear and Nowadays||Paul B Edwards|
|1995||Manuscript||William Lindsay: from Convict to Entrepreneur||Claudia M Dean|
|The Greys of Circular Head||John Davies|
|1993||Commercially published book||Linked, Chains and Lineage||Tony Satchell|
|1992||Manuscript||Private George Smith of His Majesty's Royal Marines||lrene Schaffer|
|1990||Manuscript||The Whiting Family of the Sheoak Hills||Rosamonde C Combes|
|1990-91||Book||Go ... be Fruitful and Multiply||Elizabeth J Parkes & Maurice V French (eds)|
|1988-89||Book||The Norfolk Settlers of Norfolk Island and VDL||Peter Sims|
|1988-89||Manuscript||The BlackallBiggins Smith Story||Noreen Stubbs|
|1986-87||Manuscript||Stewart & Ellen Smillie||Maree Ring|
|1985-86||Book||Winton Merino Stud 1835-1985||Vera C Taylor|
|1983-84||Book||From Chains to Freedom (vol 1: The Garth-Bellett family)||Thais Mason|
|1983-84||Manuscript||Henry Pearce (1813-1901) and his Descendants||Annette Macquarie|
A PDF list of all entries since the inception of the award, along with the names of the judging panels and, from 1998 onwards, which branch library holds the entry, may be downloaded here.