Who We Are
The Langum Foundation is a private operating foundation that awards book and media prizes and makes travel-to-collections grants. We have received a determination letter from the Internal Revenue Service recognizing our charitable status under IRC 501 (c)(3). Contributions to the Foundation are tax deductible.
Our Background and What We Do
Research Library, © Ron Lewis, depicts a scholar working in a cozy corner of the main reading room, Linn-Henley Research Library, Birmingham, Alabama.
David J. Langum, Sr. founded The Langum Initiative for Historical Literature in 2001, which soon became The Langum Charitable Trust, later The Langum Foundation, out of a conviction that too many historians today write only for each other’s reading and not for the general public. As a result the American public is left uninformed of the nation’s past to the detriment of both individual Americans and also the body politic. The Foundation seeks to redress this condition by rewarding and encouraging books that make the rich history of America from the colonial period to the present accessible to the educated general public. One prize is in American historical fiction, and another is in Professor Langum’s personal scholarly specialty, American legal history.
The Malott Prize has recently joined our list. It seeks to encourage the public’s understanding of community-based social, political, and environmental activism and reward that activism itself, through a prize encouraging media description and recording of such local activism.
The Foundation also encourages the scholarly use of the personal and family papers that Professor Langum donated to the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library (formerly Illinois State Historical Library), Springfield, Illinois, and certain of his legal papers, 1968-1978, which Professor Langum has donated to the San Jose State University Library, Special Collections, San Jose, California. For more information, see “Travel to Collections“