UCSB Santa Barbara Department of History logo

Michael Bransfield Prize

Michael Bransfield
Michael Bransfield

Michael Bransfield was a highly talented member of one of the department’s first classes in Public History. An avid environmentalist, Michael hitchhiked across the country twice by himself, camping along the way. Here began his love affair with the national parks, especially Yosemite. Michael died prematurely in 1983 while completing an internship in Louisiana. His extensive personal library forms the basis of the department’s Public History book collection. This prize was created in 2011 through a generous gift of Michael’s sister, Kate (Kathy) Bransfield, with support from Michael’s many friends and colleagues. It recognizes the best paper or project in Public History by a graduate or undergraduate student. 

Present and Previous Recipients:

Jillian Wertzberger

Jillian Wertzberger

No Award

Sierra Brown and Nicky Rehnberg

Julia Madden-Fulk, ‘From “Early Days” to Alcatraz: A History of Native American Engagement with Public Space in California, 1890 – Present’

Nora Kassner, “Moving History: Rethinking Migrations Past and Present at Santa Barbara’s El Presidio State Park”

Mariel Aquino, “The Indians of Europe’: Basques, Indigeneity, and Ethnonationalism.” 

Cheryl Frei, “Shaping and Contesting the Past: Monuments, Memory, and Argentine Identity, 1811 to the Present.”

Melissa Barthelemy, “We Remember Them: Acts of Love and Compassion in Isla Vista.”

Zachary McKiernan, “The Public History of a Concentration Camp: Tales of Tragedy
and Hope at the National Stadium of Chile.”

Stacy Blackburn, “Museums Present: Websites as a Medium to Interpret and to Engage.”

Tory Inloes, The Representation and Education of Children in Twentieth Century

Elena Olivera, “If Only She Could Speak for Herself: Public Representations of a
Nineteenth-century Channel Islands Woman, 1840s-2000s.”