Fellowship in Western Political History

Alan K. Simpson Institute for Western Politics and History


The American Heritage Center's Alan K. Simpson Institute invites applications for the 2025 Alan K. Simpson Institute Fellowship on Western Political History through March 31, 2025. This fellowship supports a 20-day research stay at the Center, providing scholars with the opportunity to explore the AHC's extensive collections in this field.

We encourage applications from scholars at any level, from graduate students to tenured faculty, and from diverse backgrounds and disciplines. The AHC is committed to fostering an inclusive research environment and supporting innovative research that sheds new light on the complex history of western politics in America. For more information about the fellowship, including eligibility requirements, application guidelines, and selection criteria, please download the detailed fellowship document.

Research Fields

Research projects may address any topic related to western political history. AHC archives include information from the careers of men and women who entered local politics, attained state positions, or served at the national level. In particular, the Center also contains numerous archives concerning women’s entry into the political process over past 150 years. Other of the Center’s political materials form a broad swathe. Its political history collections run the gamut of political attitudes from members of the John Birch Society to members of the American Communist Party, from war veterans to peace activists, from political cartoonists to motion picture scriptwriters, from news announcers and political commentators to poll takers, from agronomists to stock growers.

Features of the Fellowship

The fellowship includes a $3,000 stipend. Fellows will be in residence at the AHC for one month (20 business days), during the fifteen months following notification of the award. (For in-residence research of less than 20 days, the stipend will be pro-rated.)

Fellows are expected to prepare a precis outlining sources consulted, how those sources shaped the research findings, and how the Fellow will incorporate this information into a final product. Fellows are expected to credit the AHC in publications which use its collections and to provide copies to the AHC of final publication or work.

Payment of Stipends
The Fellow will receive the stipend at the end of their stay and receipt of the precis. No advances will be authorized.

Fellows are responsible for arranging their transportation, lodging, and meals during residency. Visit UW Admissions website for travel directions to Laramie, Wyoming, University of Wyoming campus maps, and possible lodging.


Proposals for the 2024 fellowship should include a three-page research proposal that includes specific indication of which AHC collections will be used, placement of this project within investigator’s larger research program, plans for publication or other form of dissemination, and a timeline outlining the research plan and dates for anticipated products. Proposals should also include the applicant’s CV and names and contact information of three referees.

Proposals will be awarded based on the following criteria:

  • The extent to which the proposed project draws upon the collections of the AHC.
  • The research project’s potential contribution to the understanding of western politics and politicians in American history.
  • The potential for professional presentation and/or publication upon completion of the Fellow’s research.
  • The applicant's ability to complete the research project in a timely fashion.

A selection committee composed of AHC staff and University of Wyoming faculty will choose each year’s Fellow. The recipient will be informed by e-mail.

Please email all application materials by March 31, 2025, to AHC Archivist Leslie Waggener

Information about the Simpson Institute

Launched in 2000, the Alan K. Simpson Institute for Western Politics and Leadership is a program at the AHC focused on the acquisition, preservation, and research use of the papers of prominent individuals, businesses, and organizations that have provided leadership – political, economic, social, and cultural –  for Wyoming and the Rocky Mountain West. 

Information about the American Heritage Center

The AHC is a public research institution with collections of local, regional and national significance. Its holdings emphasize the American West, from the nineteenth to the twenty-first century. It has extensive collections in military history, popular entertainment (including Hollywood and comics), mining and petroleum, as well as environment and natural resources. The Center also serves as the University of Wyoming’s manuscripts repository, rare books library, and university archives. With more than 90,000 cubic feet of material and 3500 collections, the Center stands among the largest non-governmental repositories in the nation.

For more information, please contact AHC Simpson Institute Archivist Leslie Waggener or call 307-766-2557.

Contact Us

American Heritage Center

Centennial Complex

2111 Willet Drive

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-4114

Email: ahcref@uwyo.edu

Find us on Instagram (Link opens a new window)Find us on Facebook (Link opens a new window)Find us on Twitter (Link opens a new window)Find us on LinkedIn (Link opens a new window)Find us on YouTube (Link opens a new window)