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St. Augustine historian Susan Parker receives HSARI award

Oct 5, 2020

Local group Historic St. Augustine Research Institute (HSARI) recently awarded their annual William L. Proctor award of $1,000 to Dr. Susan Parker for her work “Oldest City: the History of Saint Augustine” (St. Augustine Historical Society, 2019) for its engaging fundamental survey work on St. Augustine’s story. HSARI hosts this juried award competition for writing focused in the areas of history, archaeology and historic architecture related to St. Augustine.

Dr. Susan Parker holding her book in front of a bookcase full of books.

HSARI Acting Chair Dr. James Cusick called Parker’s publication, “A work that will make a lasting contribution to knowledge and appreciation of the city and its legacy.”

HSARI is a collaborative project of Flagler College and the University of Florida, supported by the St. Augustine Foundation, Inc. Its purpose is to encourage, coordinate and disseminate active academic research related to the history, archaeology and historical architecture of St. Augustine, Florida, and to apply this research in support of historic preservation in the city.

The award’s namesake, Dr. William L. Proctor, said of Parker’s work and award: “I wish to extend my heartiest congratulations to Susan Parker as the recipient of the 2020 Historic St. Augustine Research Institute award that bears my name. Dr. Parker's contributions to the body of research on the history of St. Augustine warrant both commendation and appreciation. Her distinguished scholarship is most deserving of this recognition.”

The book is a compilation of eleven authors’ work, all known for their research on various aspects of St. Augustine history. Some contributors weren’t able to see the book’s publication and subsequent recognition.

“We all miss our fellow authors, Eugene Lyon and Patricia Griffin. Dr. Griffin began this book project with us, but died before it was in print. Dr. Eugene Lyon lived to see his research published.” 

Due to the pandemic, HSARI wasn’t able to recognize Parker for her unique role in bringing together the foundational research into one volume. Under normal circumstances, she would have been celebrated with a luncheon with other HSARI researchers.

“I am, of course, honored to be chosen for the William L. Proctor Prize and, as such, to be part of a list of distinguished researchers who have so enhanced our understanding of St. Augustine's past. This honor belongs not just to me, but to all eleven authors, whose knowledge is offered in “Oldest City,said Parker.

For more information on HSARI, its funded research or any of its research associates, please visit the webpage here.

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