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National Heritage Fellowship: Wikis


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The National Heritage Fellowship is a lifetime honor presented to master folk and traditional artists by the National Endowment for the Arts. Similar to Japan's Living National Treasure award, the Fellowship is the United States' highest honor in the folk and traditional arts. It is a one-time only award and fellows must be citizens or permanent residents of the United States.

The program began in 1982. Each year, fellowships are presented to between ten and fifteen artists or groups at a White House ceremony in Washington, D.C. A biographical dictionary of the award winners from the first 20 years was published in 2001. [1] A young readers book featuring five of the National Heritage Fellows entitled "Extraordinary Ordinary People: Five American Masters of Traditional Arts" was published in 2006. [2]


Awardees have included Native American basket weavers, African American blues musicians, traditional fiddlers, Mexican American accordionists, and all manner of traditional artisans and performers of numerous ethnic backgrounds.

1982 | 1983 | 1984 | 1985 | 1986 | 1987 | 1988 | 1989 | 1990

1991 | 1992 | 1993 | 1994 | 1995 | 1996 | 1997 | 1998 | 1999 | 2000

2001 | 2002 | 2003 | 2004 | 2005 | 2006 | 2007 | 2008 | 2009

National Heritage Fellowship winners include:















  • Frisner Augustin, Haitian drummer
  • Lila Greengrass Blackdeer, Chunk and Black Ash basketmaker and needleworker
  • Shirley Caesar, gospel singer
  • Alfredo Campos, horse hair hitcher
  • Mary Louise Defender Wilson, Dakotah-Hidatsa traditionalist and storyteller
  • Jimmy "Slyde" Godbolt, tapdancer
  • Ulysses Goode, Western Mono basketmaker
  • Bob Holt, Ozark fiddler
  • Zakir Hussain, tabla player
  • Elliott "Ellie" Mannette, steel pan builder, tuner and player
  • Mick Moloney, Irish musician
  • Eudokia Sorochaniuk, Ukrainian American weaver and textile artist
  • Ralph W. Stanley, boatbuilder



  • Wilson "Boozoo" Chavis, Creole zydeco accordionist
  • Celestino Avilés, santero
  • Mozell Benson, quilter
  • Hazel Dickens, Appalachian singer and songwriter
  • João Oliveira dos Santos (Mestre João Grande), Capoeira Angola master
  • Evalena Henry, Apache basketweaver
  • Peter Kyvelos, oud maker
  • Eddie Pennington, thumbpicking-style guitarist
  • Qi Shu Fang, Beijing Opera performer
  • Seiichi Tanaka, Taiko drummer and dojo founder
  • Dorothy Trumpold, rug weaver
  • Fred Tsoodle, Kiowa sacred song leader
  • Joseph Wilson, folklorist



  • Rosa Elena Egipciaco, mundillo maker (Puerto Rican Bobbin Lace)
  • Agnes "Oshanee" Kenmille, Salish beadworker and regalia maker
  • Norman Kennedy, Scottish weaver, singer, storyteller
  • Roberto Martinez and Lorenzo Martinez, father and son musicians
  • Norma Miller, African American Swing Dancer/Choreographer
  • Ron Poast, Hardanger fiddle maker
  • Felipe I. Ruak and Joseph K. Ruak, father and son Carolinian stick dancers
  • Manoochehr Sadeghi, santur player
  • Nicholas Toth, diving helmet builder
  • Jesus Arriada, Johnny Curutchet, Martin Goicoechea and Jesus Goni, Basque (Bertsolari) poets


  • Anjani Ambegaokar, Kathak dancer
  • Charles "Chuck" T. Campbell, Gospel steel guitarist
  • Joe Derrane, Irish-American button accordionist
  • Jerry Douglas, Dobro player
  • Gerald "Subiyay" Miller, Skokomish tradition bearer, carver, basket maker
  • Chum Ngek, Cambodian musician and teacher
  • Milan Opacich, Tamburitza instrument maker
  • Eliseo Rodriguez and Paula Rodriguez, husband and wife straw appliqué artists
  • Koko Taylor, blues musician
  • Yuqin Wang and Zhengli Xu, Chinese rod puppeteers [4]




  • Nicholas Benson, stone letter cutter and calligrapher
  • Sidiki Conde, Guinean dancer and musician
  • Violet Kazue de Cristoforo, Haiku poet and historian
  • Roland Freeman, photo documentarian, author, and exhibit Curator
  • Pat Courtney Gold, Wasco sally bag weaver
  • Eddie Kamae, Hawaiian musician
  • Agustin Lira, Chicano singer and musician,
  • Julia Parker, Kashia Pomo basketmaker
  • Mary Jane Queen, Appalachian musician
  • Joe Thompson, string band musician
  • Irvin Trujillo, Rio Grande weaver
  • Elaine Hoffman Watts, Klezmer musician


  • Horace Axtell, Nez Perce drum maker, singer, tradition-bearer
  • Dale Harwood, saddlemaker
  • Bettye Kimbrell, quilter
  • Jeronimo E. Lozano, Peruvian retablo maker
  • Oneida Hymn Singers of Wisconsin
  • Sue Yeon Park, Korean dancer and musician
  • Moges Seyoum, Ethiopian liturgical minister and scholar
  • Jelon Vieira, Capoeira master
  • Dr. Michael White, traditional jazz musician and bandleader
  • Mac Wiseman, Bluegrass musician
  • Walter Murray Chiesa, traditional arts specialist and advocate


External links


  1. ^ [1] Masters of Traditional Arts: A Biographical Dictionary
  2. ^ [2] Extraordinary Ordinary People: Five American Masters of Traditional Arts
  3. ^ [3]
  4. ^ "(listing for) Jerry Brown". National endowment for the Arts. Retrieved 12-19-2009.  
  5. ^ "Big Joe Duskin; Bluesman who flourished in later life - obituary by Tony Russell". Retrieved November 25, 2009.  
  6. ^ A short autobiography of Ka‘upena


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