The 2012 E.P. Ingersoll Award

I’m pleased to report that the Society of Automotive Historians (SAH) has named Ate Up With Motor the winner of the 2012 E.P. Ingersoll Award.

The SAH explains the award like this:

The E. P. Ingersoll Award is given for the best presentation of automotive history in other than print media. The award is named for E. P. Ingersoll, founding editor and publisher of The Horseless Age, the first American periodical devoted to the automobile. … The award has in the past been given for films, television productions, and internet websites. They must have been released for distribution not longer than three years prior to the date of the award or, in the case of internet websites, have been active during the year prior to the date of the award.
… The [E.P. Ingersoll] Committee recognizes that nominations may include both presentations intended for the general public and others whose focus is the professional automotive historian. Standards and criteria for these two types will of necessity be different. In both cases, the work must serve to advance the knowledge of automotive history of the group to which it is addressed. The script shall be historically accurate and internally consistent, reflecting the most recent knowledge and avoiding clichés. Illustrations shall be correctly identified and chosen to support the argument of the script. Works addressed to the professional audience should provide new information not previously known or a compilation of information in a format that may serve to advance the researches of others. The limitations of film and electronic media are such that they are not usually considered to be suitable for the presentation of original research. For works where it has been included, special credit will be given.
The Committee also assesses a work in terms of its technical quality. … For internet websites, in addition to visual quality and the orderly arrangement of materials, facility and ease of use will be an important consideration.
The award may not be presented if, in the opinion of the Committee, no work submitted meets the standards and criteria described above.

[excerpted with permission from the Society of Automotive Historians’ official award description, rev. 5 September 2005; special thanks to Tom Jakups]

Past winners of the award include and Yann Saunders’ remarkable “The (new) Cadillac Database” — honorable company indeed.

I was not able to attend the awards ceremony this past weekend, but this is the message I sent to the Society:

When we talk or write about automotive history, it’s easy to become wrapped up in the minutiae of the cars themselves: the technical details, the year-to-year changes and the inevitable collector debates over value and originality. However, automotive history is also a lens through which we can examine broader sociopolitical and economic issues that might otherwise be too big or too broad to easily engage. Studying the cars of a particular time period offers invaluable insights into the concerns of that era, from its technological developments to its cultural obsessions.
My fascination with the multifaceted nature of automotive history is what led me to create Ate Up With Motor several years ago and has shaped the approach I’ve tried to take in the articles I’ve written. My hope is that the work I’ve done on the website will be of value to other historians and perhaps give automotive fans new perspective on their favorite cars.
I want to thank the Society for this honor — it’s gratifying to see the response I’ve gotten to what began as a labor of love and an admittedly not very lucrative business venture. I am sorry that I am not able to attend the ceremony, but I extend my congratulations and best wishes to all the other honorees.
Aaron Severson

For more information and a list of previous winners, check out the SAH website at


  1. Just wanted to congratulate with this deserved prize. I was diverted to your site a year and a half ago or so, and it has been part of my ‘favourite’ list since. Now I know why :-)

  2. Recognition that your contribution to the web does, in fact, generate great content on automotive history.

    Much better than auto enthusiast message board thread flame wars over automotive minutia posted by people not even born when the products were manufactured…

    Cheers and GREAT WORK!

  3. Same here about a year ago I started to read your site. Not only do I enjoy it but I learn something as well.

  4. Well deserved! Your work is among my favorite web based reading, keep up the exceptional work!


  5. Dear Aaron

    Congratulations! A well deserved accolade! My friends and I love your work!


  6. Congratulations for the well-deserved recognition of your remarkable work.

  7. I am a Director of the SAH. Just learned of this great site on Friday at the awards dinner.

    You should consider contributing to our Journal. We have a new agressive editor who is looking for authors. A link of you site with the journal will help to spread the word of your good informative work.

    Ruben Verdes is editor, if you have the latest journal, his contact info is listed. if not contact me.
    Hopefully we are lucky enough to have you as a member?


  8. Congratulations Aaron, It’s great to see well deserved recognition for such an excellent web site!

  9. Stand up and take a well deserved bow Aaron. Your website is an oasis in a desert of mediocrity. Looking forward to your next article!

  10. Congratulations on an honor well deserved.

  11. Well deserved Aaron! Congratulations! Keep up the good work producing what I personally find one of the finest informational and entertainment sources on the ‘web :)

  12. Congratulations on your well deserved award and and everything it may bring to you.

    I have been enjoying your site for a few years now and have found myself often saying “Self, I wish there was an Ate Up with Motor for (insert subject here)”

    Through research and great writing, along with the careful attribution of your source material is just awesome.

    I look forward many more years of fascinating well researched articles

  13. Well done Aaron, a nice recognition of your hard work. Hopefully it will open some doors for you and lead to some interesting opportunities.

  14. Congratulations!

  15. Congratulations Sir! Your work is truly “outside the box” of ordinary writing about cars and is a genuine thinking man’s site for car lovers. You deserve this honor.

  16. I’m in awe of the depth of research and though in your articles, and I’m really glad someone took the appreciation we readers have for your work and made it official.

  17. Aaron,

    Deepest congratulations on receiving this well deserved award! This is a huge recognition for your superb work! You must be absolutely thrilled!

  18. I cannot think of another site or individual more deserving of this award. Congradulations.

  19. Dear Aaron,

    Congratulations for the outstanding work! Surely the most complete and well researched site for car lovers. I have read ALL your articles and I am impatiently waiting for more.

  20. Ate up with motor is on the favorites list of all my computers. This is the best researched and most interesting auto site I visit, and I look forward to many more insightful articles. Congratulations.

  21. Aaron,

    An honour, and well-deserved. I avidly await each new instalment – and often go back through the archives.


  22. Hey Aaron – I got your email and wanted to congratulate you for an honor that’s well deserved! I love your site as you know and missed it while dealing with recent computer problems.

    Have you checked out the Aerodynamics or Italian Style exhibits at the Petersen? Great stuff!

  23. You are my favorite auto history, such complete stories.

  24. I’ve been coming to this website for a few years now and I have to say congratulations! I’ve always been amazed with your work and you’re definitely deserving of this award! Keep up the good work, I look forward to learning more great automotive history.

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