News | November 23, 2022

David Ruggles Prize Returns For Young Book Collectors of Color

David Ruggles Prize

Lowell, MA - We’re very pleased to announce the next round of the David Ruggles Prize, a national book collecting prize encouraging and supporting young collectors of color. The three prizes—$1,000 grand prize, $500 second prize, and $250 third prize—are awarded annually to applicants whose collections are considered most outstanding by our panel of judges. This round’s deadline is 11 June 2023. Entry is open to anyone in the United States aged 35 or younger.

We take an expansive view of the word book. You needn’t have a collection of traditional hard and softcovers (which are certainly fine). When it comes to your collection, we’ll defer to your understanding of what makes a book. Comic books and graphic novels, zines, contemporary book art, handwritten manuscripts. All are welcome. Online application is easy, and you’re welcome to submit your application in advance for review by one of our judges.

The prize honors the legacy of David Ruggles, an early American abolitionist, publisher, and Underground Railroad conductor. The New York grocery store he opened in 1828 soon became the country’s first Black-owned bookstore. Beyond rewarding existing collectors, we hope this prize will encourage young book lovers everywhere to become book collectors.

We had some fantastic entries last year. Read up if you’d like to learn more about the winners. If you applied in the last round but didn’t receive a prize, we encourage you to apply again. (Past winners may apply again in a few years with a different collection.) And of course we look forward to submissions from new collectors and anyone who missed last year’s deadline.

Meet the jury and get all the details at Find us on Instagram and Twitter @rugglesprize. We’d like to thank our generous sponsors for making this possible, and we’re excited to read about your collections!