Each year the VHS recognizes authors of the best articles to appear in the society's quarterly journal, the Virginia Magazine of History and Biography, as well as authors of works in the field of Virginia biography.
The William M. E. Rachal Award was established in 1985 for the overall best article to appear in the VMHB. Each year a committee of the journal's editorial advisory board selects the author whose essay has best advanced the cause of scholarship in Virginia history. The award carries a cash prize of $250 and honors the long-time editor of the journal, Will Rachal, who served from 1953 to 1980. View a list of past William M. E. Rachel Award recipients.
The C. Coleman McGehee Award was established in 1995 to recognize the best article written by a graduate student in the VMHB. The prize, which carries a cash award of $250, was created in memory of C. Coleman McGehee, who served as president of the society from 1992 to 1994. View a list of past C. Coleman McGehee Award recipients.
The Richard Slatten Award was established in 1997, thanks to a generous bequest, to recoginize excellence in the field of Virginia Biography. This prize, which carries a cash award of $1,000, honors the person whose work made the most significant contribution to biographical study. View a list of past Richard Slatten Award recipients.