Lee Allen History of Baseball Award

In 1996, SABR initiated an award, subsequently named in honor of Lee Allen, honoring the best baseball research project at the annual National History Day competition, an annual event in which students compete on a regional basis, followed by state competition, and then national finals at the University of Maryland.

Lee Allen was historian at the National Baseball Hall of Fame and Museum from 1959 until his death in May 1969.


Previous Winners of the Lee Allen Award


  • “Design Fun-Dations: The Rebranding Revolution That Revitalized Minor League Baseball,” by Jack McGuinn and Quinn Roberts of Baltimore, Maryland


  • “Much More than a Box Score: Larry Doby’s Integration of the American League and the Destruction of Black Baseball,” by Amy Snively of Cary, North Carolina


  • Stranded at First Base: Sixty Years of Hardball Debate and Baseball Diplomacy and Their Impact on the Game in Cuba and the United States,” by Dominick Pizzelanti and Lilia Pizzelanti of Kutztown, Pennsylvania
  • “Baltimore’s Ballpark Debates and Their Legacy: The Orioles’ Relocation from Memorial Stadium to Camden Yards,” by Marshall Civin of Baltimore, Maryland


  • Writing Race: Sam Lacy Chronicles the Crossing of the Color Line in Sports Journalism,” by Dominick Pizzelanti and Grayson Ebner of Kutztown, Pennsylvania


  • “A Forgotten Hero: Larry Doby’s Fight to Integrate American League Baseball,” by Gianna Santangelo, Rebecca Catlos, and Tory Bobosky of New Middletown, Ohio


  • “Jackie Robinson: ​Stealing Bases and Gaining Equality Among the Races,” by Frederic Ward and William Ward of Norfolk, Virginia


  • “To Enrich the Future, Not to Avenge the Past: How Jackie Robinson’s Compromise With Branch Rickey in Major League Baseball Led to Robinson Joining the Conflict of the Civil Rights Movement,” by Connor Albert of North Yarmouth, Maine


  • “Branch Rickey’s Stand: The Integration of Baseball,” by Evan Nelson of Clovis, California


  • “The Path to the Sugar Mill or the Path to Millions: The MLB Baseball Academy’s Effect on the Dominican Republic,” by Thomas McKenna of Lovettsville, Virginia


  • “Restoring Public Faith in the National Pastime: Baseball’s First Commissioner,” by Ji-Ho Lee of Columbia, Missouri


  • “The Curt Flood Case: Free Agency for Athletes,” by Harrison O’Brien of South Hamilton, Massachusetts


  • “The All-American Girls Professional Baseball League,” by Grace Olson of La Crosse, Wisconsin


  • “The Baseball Diamond: The Only Jewel Wrapped in Chains,” by Jacob Hurwitz of Portage, Michigan, and Andrew Beck and Eli Cartier of Kalamazoo, Michigan


  • “Play Ball! Jackie Robinson: Breaking the Color Barrier,” by Russell Aspinwall and Garrett Fragala of South Haven, Michigan


  • “Branch Rickey’s Surreptitious Civil Rights Strategy,” by Cody Driver and Andrew Kanei of Mililani, Hawaii


  • “Jackie Robinson,” by Marissa Haarmann of Phoenix, Arizona


  • “Jackie Robinson Keeps His Cool,” by Zach Frampton of Laie, Hawai


  • “Play Ball! A Triumph For Women Begins Amidst the Tragedy of World War II,” by Alana Klco of Whitehall, Michigan


  • “End The Unjust Monopoly: Curt Flood’s Stand Against Baseball’s Reserve Clause,” by Colin Bender of Edmond, Oklahoma


  • “Jackie Robinson and Larry Doby Break the Color Barrier,” by Fleetwood Fleming of Mount Pleasant, South Carolina.


  • “Girls of Summer: Paving the Way for Women in All Seasons,” by Corissa Westergard, Shelby Johnson and Mackenzie Heyl of Davenport, Iowa


  • “Jackie Robinson: The Man Responsible for the Integration of Baseball,” by Alexander Hearn of Indianapolis, Indiana


  • “Free Agency Revolutionizes the Business of Baseball,” by Steve Mason and Kevin Rowe of Grand Rapids, Michigan


  • “Exhibit of Jackie Robinson Integrates Baseball,” by Philip Beck of Rothschild, Wisconsin


  • “Turning Points in Baseball History: Branch Rickey Hires Jackie Robinson,” by James McMahon of Windsor, Connecticut


  • No award given


  • “Baseball’s Migration to Latin America,” by Nicholas Condon of Stamford, Connecticut


  • “Baseball’s Hidden Half,” by Carl Leivers and Marcus Kret of Colorado Springs, Colorado


  • “Curt Flood: Man Against the System,” by Alex Giannini, Ethan Schwart, Lane DeSimone and Brian Krost from Stanford, Connecticut