Every year since 1969, the Marine Historical Society of Detroit has named an Historian of the Year. The award is voted on by past winners, and honors those who have contributed significantly to the research, presentation or publication of Great Lakes ships and the shipping history.
2020 Historian of the Year
Jim Hoffman, a long-time resident of Toledo, served in the U.S. Coast Guard from 1967-1971 on various lifeboat stations and offshore lighthouses on Lake Superior and Lake Michigan. While he was in the U.S. Coast Guard, he started taking pictures of boats and has traveled to all five Great Lakes and the Welland Canal to do so. He primarily used a small boat as well as bridges and various shoreline areas for his marine photography. A member of the MHSD advisory council for many years, he passed away November 7, 2020 after a valiant battle with cancer.