George W. McCoy
George William McCoy (1901-1962), newspaper editor, won the award in 1955 for his numerous historical articles, which were recognized as being reference works used by his newspaper colleagues as well as other North Carolina historians. McCoy became managing editor of The Asheville Citizen in 1947 and continued his efforts to enrich the life of mountain people and write about their heritage. The award paid tribute to McCoy as “a pioneer in the small regional group which realized the importance of prosecuting detailed research and as a leader in collecting facts and data which would provide this important area of North Carolina with a true history of its development in every phase and along every line.” One of his achievements while working with WNCHA was the initiation of the successful movement for the preservation of the Zebulon Vance Birthplace on Reems Creek. He was also one of the organizers and served as secretary of the Thomas Wolfe Memorial Association, Inc. He originated the movement for a museum and collection for the Great Smoky Mountains National Park.