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ASU's Dr. Nancy Hendricks wins 2010
Susie Pryor Award for Arkansas history
April 8, 2010
Dr. Nancy Hendricks,
director of Alumni Communications at Arkansas State
University–Jonesboro, has won the
Pryor Award for Arkansas Women’s History. The prestigious award is named
in honor of the late Susan Hampton Pryor (1900-1984) of Camden, the
first woman to run for political office in Arkansas after women won the
vote, community leader, historian, and writer. Dr. Hendricks wrote this
year's winning entry, “A Friend in
Deed: The Private Correspondence of Sen. Hattie Caraway in the V. C.
Kays Archives.” Hattie Caraway of Jonesboro was the first woman
elected to the United States Senate, holding office from 1932 through
1945. The papers of the late V. C. Kays, founding president of
what is today Arkansas State University, are housed at ASU-Jonesboro.
In her manuscript, Hendricks contended that while often seen as
ineffectual, Sen. Caraway, who died in 1950, worked tirelessly and
effectively for her constituents. Her actions affected thousands of
people as well as institutions such as Arkansas State University.
Caraway helped obtain federal funds during the Depression for the
construction of nine buildings on the ASU campus, four of which are
still used today. Hendricks was quoted for her expertise on Caraway in
the March 29 edition of Arkansas Business, and hopes ultimately
to publish her research on the Caraway letters.
Hendricks holds a
doctorate in education from the University of Arkansas and a master’s
degree in English from Arkansas State University. She is an
award-winning writer whose play, “Miz Caraway and the Kingfish,” tells
the story of Caraway's campaign with Huey Long to become America's first
woman Senator. Its New Orleans production was held over for an extended
run and nominated by the American Critics Association for "Best Play
Produced Outside New York." She also performs a one-person program,
“Hattie to Hillary: Women in Politics.” Her most recent play is “Boy
Hero: The Story of David O. Dodd,” and her screenplay, “Terrible Swift
Sword,” about the Sultana disaster, is being perused in Hollywood. She
was the recipient of the Arkansas Governor’s Arts Award and the White
House Millennium Award for her writing.
Pryor's grandson is Mark Pryor, current U.S. senator from Arkansas. Mrs.
Pryor was the mother of Arkansas governor and U.S. Sen. David Pryor, who
will present Hendricks with the award at the Arkansas Historical
Association banquet in Jonesboro on Friday, April 16.
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