Hiram C. Wilburn
Hiram Coleman Wilburn (1880 – 1967) of Waynesville received the award in 1960 for his distinguished work in Cherokee history. A native of South Carolina and a graduate of Clemson College, Wilburn worked as a land surveyor for the North Carolina Park Commission before being employed by the Civilian Conservation Corps as a trial foreman. When the CCC dissolved in 1942, Wilburn’s official work with the park ended. Wilburn then became the unofficial historian of the Great Smoky Mountain National Park. Wilburn spent time identifying historic structures, collecting artifacts, and researching local history. He is credited with curating the earliest collections that would form the nucleus of the park’s museum.