The Society's primary activity is supporting research and publication of public works history. However, the Society also sponsors recognition programs and symposiums with APWA and other organizations. Some of the Society's major ongoing programs and activities include:

 

Oral History Program


The Society's oral history program records interviews of public works practitioners who have made significant contributions to the profession in North America. Interviewees come from all facets of public works, but typically are public works managers and engineers with lifetime experiences or individuals who were witness to public works milestone events and activities.

Original interview tapes and transcripts are archived with the Western Historical Manuscript Collection at the University of Missouri–Kansas City and other locations. A complete list of our oral history collection is available on this web site. Transcripts of the oral interviews are available from the Society's web site archives.

The historical records of APWA are housed and managed by the University of Missouri, Western Historical Manuscript Collection located in Kansas City. These records are available for viewing by scheduling an appointment to visit the library by contacting, Connie Hartline at APWA headquarters. A complete listing of the documents in the collection is available on this web site.  
 
Many of the interview transcripts are published under our popular An Interview With series – including such public works icons as Samuel Greeley, Senator Jennings Randolph, and Donald Stone. Published interviews are available from the APWA Bookstore and APWA Publications and Programs Catalog.

 


Essays in Public Works History


The Essays in Public Works History Series provides a forum for historians and practitioners to publish historical papers on public works topics. A complete list of the essay series along with copies of out of print editions is available from the Society's web site archives.

Individuals interesting in authoring an essay should review the Call-For-Abstracts or contact Connie Hartline, the APWA staff liaison.

Published essays are available from the APWA Bookstore and APWA Publications and Programs Catalog.


Public Works History Newsletter


The Society publishes a periodic newsletter titled Public Works History, which is distributed electronically to its members and other interested parties. The newsletter serves as the Society's principal mode of communication reporting Society news, historical/preservation activities, and general public works history. Electronic copies of previous issues of the newsletter are available here. Contact the PWHS to inquire about the availability of printed copies from the Society's archives.

Individuals and organizations wishing to submit articles and press releases should review the newsletter guidelines or contact APWA Staff Connie Hartline.


Abel Wolman Award


Established to recognize the best new book published in the field of public works history and is meant to provide encouragement and recognition to historians whose research and publications have made outstanding contributions to the history of public works.

Books must be published during the preceding calendar year and cover one or more of the following topics: Flood Control & Drainage, Irrigation, Waterways, Solid Waste, Planning, Engineering & Administration; Public Buildings; Sewer & Wastewater Treatment; Roads, Streets & Highways; Urban Mass Transportation; Community Water Supply; Military Installations; Airways & Airports; Parks & Recreation; and Energy. Anyone may nominate (including individual authors or their publishers).  Nomination information can be found at www.apwa.net/awards.

Michael Robinson Award for Excellence in Public Works History

 
This award recognizes the single best article published in the field of public works history. This award is intended to provide encouragement and recognition to historians and practitioners whose research and publications have made outstanding contributions to the history of public works.

Articles published in the prior calendar year covering one or more public works topics are eligible.  Articles must be a minimum of 500 words in length and published by a widely known journal or periodical.  Articles published by APWA, its chapters or the Society are not eligible. Anyone may not nominate (including individual authors or their publishers).  Nomination Information can be found at www.apwa.net/awards.

PWHS Endowment Fund


Established for the sole purpose of funding selected award programs, publishing projects and special events as they relate to the historical preservation of the public works environment and the PWHS Strategic Plan.