The Ellison Durant Smith Research Awards provide financial support to undergraduate, graduate, and postgraduate scholars seeking to conduct research at the South Caroliniana Library on government and politics since 1900.
At his death, Ellison Durant "Cotton Ed" Smith [1864-1944] had served longer in the U.S. Senate, 1909 to 1944, than any prior member. Columbia's The State newspaper called Smith, "one of the most colorful senators in theNation's history, a rugged individualist who fought to the very end for his very pronounced ideas on government, on racial relations and other matters. He didn't flinch to stand alone; he was a bitter-end fighter of the New Deal, [and] a staunch supporter of States' rights. . . ." As chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Forestry, Smith was a powerful advocate for the farmer. Historian Leonard Plummer stated, "When he came to the Senate he came with a mission. . . . He was one of the first to demand national action for the economic relief of the agriculture of the South. . . ." He was a farmer himself, operating the family plantation, located in what is now Lee County.
The Ellison Durant Smith Awards are endowed through the estate of Harold McCallum McLeod [d.1999]. Mr. McLeod was a native of Timmonsville, Wofford graduate, and World War II veteran. He was employed by the Internal Revenue Service from 1933 until his retirement as District Director in 1973. McLeod is remembered for the friendly and effective manner in which he carried out his difficult duties with the IRS, for his commitment to his church, country and Wofford College, and his fond childhood memories of "Cotton Ed," his famous relative.
Awards are available to underwrite travel, lodging, and other research expenses. Each proposal will be evaluated on its merits. Primary consideration will be given to projects involving the substantive study of issues of general interest and doctoral and post-doctoral studies. Each proposal should be aimed at a discrete end product such as a book, dissertation, thesis, article, documentary, film, or exhibit. Budgets will be examined and may be approved in whole or in part. In return for accepting support, each award recipient is required to acknowledge the Smith Award in any resulting published works and donate a copy (or copies) of said works to the library. The recipient may also be requested to submit a brief article summarizing their findings and research experience for publication in the Library newsletter. No standard form is needed to apply, but each application should include proof of U.S. citizenship and:
- Full name, address, telephone and fax numbers, and email address.
- A description of the research project in five hundred to one thousand words.
- A personal vitae.
- An overall project budget clearly stating the amount sought and the use to which the award will be put.
- One to three letters of reference attesting to the applicant's scholarly ability and significance of their research project.
Applications will be accepted through Januray 31st of each year. A committee appointed by the Library Director will review the applications in November and awards will be made in December for expenditure during the following calendar year. Recipients are required to submit copies of all bills showing the exhaustion of the award. Applications should be addressed to:
The South Caroliniana Library
910 Sumter St.
University of South Carolina
Columbia, S.C. 29208