LEXINGTON, Ky. (April 27, 2015) — University Press of Kentucky (UPK) author Douglas V. Mastriano has been named the recipient of the 2015 Crader Family Book Prize in American Values for his book "Alvin York: A New Biography of the Hero of the Argonne." This award recognizes a first book that best exemplifies the values of the Crader Family Endowment for American Values: individual liberty, constitutional principles and civic virtue.
The Crader Award is presented to a book in the area of U.S., European or Latin American history that explores the historical development of the political, religious and economic heritage of Western Civilization, or events directly related to them. An honorarium of $1,000 comes with this achievement.
The purpose of this award is to increase knowledge and appreciation of the political, religious and economic heritage of this nation and the West, and the values of individual liberty, constitutional principles and civic virtue that are at the foundation of this society. The Crader Family of Jackson, Missouri, sponsors this award and has made a commitment to support its efforts through this endowment in their family name. The Crader Family Endowment for American Values exists within the Southeast Missouri University Foundation.
In "Alvin York," Douglas V. Mastriano sorts fact from myth in the first full-length biography of York in decades. He meticulously examines York’s youth in the hills of east Tennessee, his service in the Great War, and his return to a quiet civilian life dedicated to charity.
As a devout Christian, conscientious objector, and reluctant hero of World War I, Alvin York is known as one of America’s most famous and celebrated soldiers. York’s capture of 132 German soldiers earned him the Congressional Medal of Honor, and continues to spark controversy among historians who think York has received more recognition than he deserves. By reviewing artifacts recovered from the battlefield using military terrain analysis, forensic study, and research in both German and American archives, Mastriano reconstructs the events of Oct. 8, 1918, and corroborates the recorded accounts.
The Crader Family Book Prize Committee selected Mastriano’s work on York, noting that he “marshals an impressive amount of primary source material” in “telling the story of one of America’s iconic heroes.”
"I am delighted to learn that my book, 'Alvin York: A New Biography of the Hero of the Argonne,' is the recipient of the 2015 Crader Family Book Prize in American Values," Mastriano said. "I am humbled by this decision and consider it a great honor."
This marks the second award the book has garnered. It was also named the winner of the 2015 William E. Colby Award for contributions to our understanding of intelligence operations, military history, or international affairs. Mastriano is a colonel in the U.S. Army.
UPK is the scholarly publisher for the Commonwealth of Kentucky, representing a consortium that now includes all of the state universities, five private colleges and two historical societies. Led by Director Stephen Wrinn, its editorial program focuses on the humanities and the social sciences. Offices for the administrative, editorial, production and marketing departments of the press are found at UK, which provides financial support toward the operating expenses of the publishing operation.
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