Special Awards

College Fellowships Awarded by Homestead FoundationThe Homestead Foundation has awarded Fellowships to two college students who are studying history and literature of the American West. James Jones, a student at Western New Mexico University in pursuit of an MAIS in History and Writing, and Candolin Cook, a first-year masters student at the University of New Mexico, where she is studying study nineteenth century U.S. West and masculinity in the mythic West, will received this year’s awards.

Four years ago, as a student in the University of Northern Colorado Honors Program, James Jones wrote Silverheels: A Story of Land, Legend, and Life in 19th-Century Colorado – a university-published thesis exploring the pioneer days of the territory. He frequently writes about history on his website,


He has completed a historical novel and says, “In my life I have studied Spanish in Costa Rica, poured concrete, fumbled the ball on the one yard-line, visited every American state, played in a bar band, worked as a leadership consultant, camped alone in the woods for two months, and even, somehow, married the girl of my dreams. But among every gratification, calamity, and occasional dilettantism, writing the west has forever been what I do best. It is the most enjoyable and steadfastly pursued passion in my life. To study, write, and teach western history is what I want to do.”

Cook’s current research focuses on renegade or “Bronco” Apaches of the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. Her masters thesis will attempt to uncover the “true” story of two Apache outlaws: Massai and the Apache kid, and analyze their representations in collective memory and popular culture.

Currently, she is employed as an assistant editor at the New Mexico Historical Review. She enjoys writing about the American West, film, and various other historical topics. She hopes to continue on to the PhD program at UNM, and ultimately work in the public history and historical writing fields.