Pulitzer Prizes for Biography or Autobiography

Julia Ward Howe,
subject of the first
Pulitzer-winning biography
The Pulitzer Prize for Biography or Autobiography is one of the original Pulitzers. It has been presented since 1917 for a distinguished biography or autobiography by an American author or co-authors, published during the preceding calendar year. (Adapted from Wikipedia)

Finalists have been announced in the Biography category since 1980. These are indicated with an "F"; winners in the same years are designated with a "W."

In 1962, no award was given. According to Wikipedia, "In 1962 the Pulitzer board awarded the prize to W.A. Swanberg for Citizen Hearst. The trustees of Columbia University, who administer the prize, overturned the award, refusing to honor a book that took a critical look at William Randolph Hearst."

You can read more about some of the more recent winners at the Pulitzer site.

1917: Julia Ward Howe (Laura E. Richards and Maud Howe Elliott, assisted by Florence Howe Hall)
1918: Benjamin Franklin, Self-Revealed (William Cabell Bruce)
1919: The Education of Henry Adams (Henry Adams)

1920: The Life of John Marshall, 4 vols. (Albert J. Beveridge)
1921: The Americanization of Edward Bok (Edward Bok)
1922: A Daughter of the Middle Border (Hamlin Garland)
1923: The Life and Letters of Walter H. Page (Burton J. Hendrick)
1924: From Immigrant to Inventor (Michael I. Pupin)
1925: Barrett Wendell and His Letters (M. A. Dewolfe Howe)
1926: The Life of Sir William Osler, 2 vols. (Harvey Cushing)
1927: Whitman (Emory Holloway)
1928: The American Orchestra and Theodore Thomas (Charles Edward Russell)
1929: The Training of an American: The Earlier Life and Letters of Walter H. Page (Burton J. Hendrick)

1930: The Raven (Marquis James)
1931: Charles W. Eliot (Henry James)
1932: Theodore Roosevelt (Henry F. Pringle)
1933: Grover Cleveland (Allan Nevins)
1934: John Hay (Tyler Dennett)
1935: R. E. Lee (Douglas S. Freeman)
1936: The Thought and Character of William James (Ralph Barton Perry)
1937: Hamilton Fish (Allan Nevins)
1938: Andrew Jackson, 2 vols. (Marquis James)
1938: Pedlar's Progress (Odell Shepard)
1939: Benjamin Franklin (Carl Van Doren)

1940: Woodrow Wilson, Life and Letters. Vols. VII and VIII (Ray Stannard Baker)
1941: Jonathan Edwards, 1703-1758: a biography (Ola Elizabeth Winslow)
1942: Crusader in Crinoline: The Life of Harriet Beecher Stowe (Forrest Wilson)
1943: Admiral of the Ocean Sea (Samuel Eliot Morison)
1944: The American Leonardo: The Life of Samuel F. B. Morse (Carleton Mabee)
1945: George Bancroft: Brahmin Rebel (Russel Blaine Nye)
1946: Son of the Wilderness: The Life of John Muir (Linnie Marsh Wolfe)
1947: The Autobiography of William Allen White (William Allen White)
1948: Forgotten First Citizen: John Bigelow (Margaret Clapp)
1949: Roosevelt and Hopkins (Robert E. Sherwood)

1950: John Quincy Adams and the Foundations of American Foreign Policy (Samuel Flagg Bemis)
1951: John C. Calhoun: American Portrait (Margaret Louise Coit)
1952: Charles Evans Hughes (Merlo J. Pusey)
1953: Edmund Pendleton 1721–1803 (David J. Mays)
1954: The Spirit of St. Louis (Charles A. Lindbergh)
1955: The Taft Story (William S. White)
1956: Benjamin Henry Latrobe (Talbot Faulkner Hamlin)
1957: Profiles in Courage (John F. Kennedy)
1958: George Washington, Volumes I-VI (Douglas Southall Freeman) and George Washington, Volume VII (John Alexander Carroll and Mary Wells)
1959: Woodrow Wilson, American Prophet (Arthur Walworth)

1960: John Paul Jones (Samuel Eliot Morison)
1961: Charles Sumner and the Coming of the Civil War (David Donald)
1963: Henry James (Leon Edel)
1964: John Keats (Walter Jackson Bate)
1965: Henry Adams, 3 vols., (Ernest Samuels)
1966: A Thousand Days (Arthur M. Schlesinger, Jr.)
1967: Mr. Clemens and Mark Twain (Justin Kaplan)
1968: Memoirs (George Frost Kennan)
1969: The Man From New York: John Quinn and His Friends (Benjamin Lawrence Reid)

1970: Huey Long (Thomas Harry Williams)
1971: Robert Frost: The Years of Triumph, 1915–1938, (Lawrence Thompson)
1972: Eleanor and Franklin (Joseph P. Lash)
1973: Luce and His Empire (W. A. Swanberg)
1974: O'Neill, Son and Artist (Louis Sheaffer)
1975: The Power Broker: Robert Moses and the Fall of New York (Robert Caro)
1976: Edith Wharton: A Biography (R. W. B. Lewis)
1977: A Prince of Our Disorder: The Life of T E. Lawrence (John E. Mack)
1978: Samuel Johnson (Walter Jackson Bate)
1979: Days of Sorrow and Pain: Leo Baeck and the Berlin Jews (Leonard Baker)

1980: (W) The Rise of Theodore Roosevelt (Edmund Morris)
1980: (F) Bernard Berenson, The Making of a Connoisseur (Ernest Samuels)
1980: (F) The Duke of Deception (Geoffrey Wolff)
1980: (F) Being Bernard Berenson (Meryle Secrest)
1981: (W) Peter the Great: His Life and World (Robert K. Massie)
1981: (F) Walt Whitman: A Life (Justin Kaplan)
1981: (F) Walter Lippmann and the American Century (Ronald Steel)
1982: (W) Grant: A Biography (William S. McFeely)
1982: (F) Mornings on Horseback (David McCullough)
1982: (F) Waldo Emerson (Gay Wilson Allen)
1983: (W) Growing Up (Russell Baker)
1983: (F) Thomas E. Dewey and His Times (Richard Norton Smith)
1983: (F) Churchill: Young Man in a Hurry, 1874-1915 (Ted Morgan)
1984: (W) Booker T. Washington: The Wizard of Tuskegee, 1901–1915 (Louis R. Harlan)
1984: (F) Carlyle: A Biography (Fred Kaplan Thomas)
1984: (F) Black Apollo of Science: the Life of Ernest Everett Just (Kenneth Manning)
1985: (W) The Life and Times of Cotton Mather (Kenneth Silverman)
1985: (F) Becoming William James (Howard M. Feinstein)
1985: (F) The Seven Mountains of Thomas Merton (Michael Mott)
1986: (W) Louise Bogan: A Portrait (Elizabeth Frank)
1986: (F) A Hidden Childhood: A Jewish Girl's Sanctuary in a French Convent, 1942-1945 (Frida Scheps Weinstein)
1986: (F) George Washington Williams: A Biography (John Hope Franklin)
1987: (W) Bearing the Cross: Martin Luther King Jr. and the Southern Christian Leadership Conference (David J. Garrow)
1987: (F) Murrow: His Life and Times (A.M. Sperber)
1987: (F) Dostoevsky: The Stir of Liberation, 1860-1865 (Joseph Frank)
1987: (F) The Life and Times of Congressman John Quincy Adams (Leonard L. Richards)
1988: (W) Look Homeward: A Life of Thomas Wolfe (David Herbert Donald)
1988: (F) George Santayana: A Biography (John McCormick)
1988: (F) Hemingway (Kenneth S. Lynn)
1989: (W) Oscar Wilde (Richard Ellmann)
1989: (F) The Life of Langston Hughes: Volume II, 1941-1967: I Dream a World (Arnold Rampersad)
1989: (F) A Bright Shining Lie: John Paul Vann and America in Vietnam (Neil Sheehan)
1989: (F) Freud: A Life For Our Time (Peter Gay)

1990: (W) Machiavelli in Hell (Sebastian de Grazia)
1990: (F) A First-Class Temperament: The Emergence of Franklin Roosevelt (Geoffrey C. Ward)
1990: (F) The Road From Coorain (Jill Ker Conway)
1990: (F) Clear Pictures: First Loves, First Guides (Reynolds Price)
1991: (W) Jackson Pollock: An American Saga (Steven Naifeh and Gregory White Smith)
1991: (F) Alfred I. Du Pont: The Man and His Family (Joseph Frazier Wall)
1991: (F) The Five of Hearts: An Intimate Portrait of Henry Adams and His Friends1880-1918 (Patricia O'Toole)
1992: (W) Fortunate Son: The Autobiography of Lewis B. Puller Jr. (Lewis B. Puller)
1992: (F) Orwell: The Authorized Biography (Michael Shelden)
1992: (F) Frederick Douglass (William S. McFeely)
1993: (W) Truman (David McCullough)
1993: (F) Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman (James Gleick)
1993: (F) Kissinger (Walter Isaacson)
1994: (W) W.E.B. Du Bois : Biography of a Race, 1868–1919 (David Levering Lewis)
1994: (F) In Extremis: The Life of Laura Riding (Deborah Baker)
1994: (F) Genet: A Biography (Edmund White)
1995: (W) Harriet Beecher Stowe: A Life (Joan D. Hedrick)
1995: (F) Hugo Black: A Biography (Roger K. Newman)
1995: (F) Saint-Exupery: A Biography (Stacy Schiff)
1996: (W) God: A Biography (Jack Miles)
1996: (F) John Sloan: Painter and Rebel (John Loughery)
1996: (F) Mozart: A Life (Maynard Solomon)
1997: (W) Angela's Ashes: A Memoir (Frank McCourt)
1997: (F) Herman Melville: A Biography, Volume 1, 1819-1851 (Hershel Parker)
1997: (F) In the Wilderness: Coming of Age in Unknown Country (Kim Barnes)
1998: (W) Personal History (Katharine Graham)
1998: (F) Alfred C. Kinsey: A Public-Private Life (James H. Jones)
1998: (F) Whittaker Chambers: A Biography (Sam Tanenhaus)
1999: (W) Lindbergh (A. Scott Berg)
1999: (F) At Home with the Marquis de Sade: A Life (Francine du Plessix Gray)
1999: (F) A Beautiful Mind (Sylvia Nasar)

2000: (W) Vera, Mrs. Vladimir Nabokov (Stacy Schiff)
2000: (F) Clear Springs: A Memoir (Bobbie Ann Mason)
2000: (F) Galileo's Daughter: A Historical Memoir of Science, Faith, and Love (Dava Sobel)
2001: (W) W.E.B. Du Bois: The Fight for Equality and The American Century, 1919–1963 (David Levering Lewis)
2001: (F) Johann Sebastian Bach: The Learned Musician (Christoph Wolff)
2001: (F) The First American: The Life and Times of Benjamin Franklin (H.W. Brands)
2002: (W) John Adams (David McCullough)
2002: (F) Grant (Jean Edward Smith)
2002: (F) An Hour Before Daylight: Memories of a Rural Boyhood (Jimmy Carter)
2003: (W) Master of the Senate: The Years of Lyndon Johnson (Robert Caro)
2003: (F) Beethoven: The Music and the Life (Lewis Lockwood)
2003: (F) The Fly Swatter (Nicholas Dawidoff)
2004: (W) Khrushchev: The Man and His Era (William Taubman)
2004: (F) Arshile Gorky: His Life and Work (Hayden Herrera)
2004: (F) Isaac Newton (James Gleick)
2005: (W) de Kooning: An American Master (Mark Stevens and Annalyn Swan)
2005: (F) Will in the World: How Shakespeare Became Shakespeare (Stephen Greenblatt)
2005: (F) Under a Wild Sky: John James Audubon and the Making of The Birds of America (William Souder)
2006: (W) American Prometheus: The Triumph and Tragedy of J. Robert Oppenheimer (Kai Bird and Martin J. Sherwin)
2006: (F) The Year of Magical Thinking (Joan Didion)
2006: (F) The Peabody Sisters: Three Women Who Ignited American Romanticism (Megan Marshall)
2007: (W) The Most Famous Man in America (Debby Applegate)
2007: (F) John Wilkes: The Scandalous Father of Civil Liberty (Arthur H. Cash)
2007: (F) Andrew Carnegie (David Nasaw)
2008: (W) Eden's Outcasts: The Story of Louisa May Alcott and Her Father (John Matteson)
2008: (F) The Worlds of Lincoln Kirstein (Martin Duberman)
2008: (F) The Life of Kingsley Amis (Zachary Leader)
2009: (W) American Lion: Andrew Jackson in the White House (Jon Meacham)
2009: (F) Traitor to His Class: The Privileged Life and Radical Presidency of Franklin Delano Roosevelt (H.W. Brands)
2009: (F) The Bin Ladens: An Arabian Family in the American Century (Steve Coll)

2010: (W) The First Tycoon: The Epic Life of Cornelius Vanderbilt (T.J. Stiles)
2010: (F) Cheever: A Life (Blake Bailey)
2010: (F) Woodrow Wilson: A Biography (John Milton Cooper, Jr.)
2011: (W) Washington: A Life (Ron Chernow)
2011: (F) The Publisher: Henry Luce and His American Century (Alan Brinkley)
2011: (F) Mrs. Adams in Winter: A Journey in the Last Days of Napoleon (Michael O'Brien)
2012: (W) George F. Kennan: An American Life (John Lewis Gaddis)
2012: (F) Malcolm X: A Life of Reinvention (Manning Marable)
2012: (F) Love and Capital: Karl and Jenny Marx and the Birth of a Revolution (Mary Gabriel)
2013: (W) The Black Count: Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, and the Real Count of Monte Cristo (Tom Reiss) 2013: (F) The Patriarch: The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy (David Nasaw)
2013: (F) Portrait of a Novel: Henry James and the Making of an American Masterpiece (Michael Gorra)

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