Colonial Dames of America – Arkansas Chapter presented Michael Riedel’s “Razzle Dazzle: The Battle for Broadway” to Crystal Gates, executive director of the William F. Laman Public Library in North Little Rock, on Oct. 13.

Every year, the book award committees of 40 Colonial Dames of America chapters throughout the country and abroad read 50 nonfiction books by American authors and publishers in order to choose one they consider outstanding, bearing on American life and meriting the group’s Annual Award. The organization also determines Citation Awards for the author and publisher of one additional book and a Young Readers book.

The state chapter tries to donate an Annual Award book to a local library of its membership each year, according to Betty Harp, president of the Arkansas Chapter, and this year, they selected the Laman Library because several of their members are from or live in North Little Rock. A plate will be placed in the donated copy, and a note marked in the library’s catalog record.

On Jan. 26, 1898, 14 ladies met in Little Rock to form the Arkansas Society. They followed the historical preservation, education and relief work objectives of the National Society of Colonial Dames of America that began the year before when the New York Society undertook the preservation of the Van Cortlandt House.

The group also offers scholarships and an essay contest awarding a week in the nation’s capital for tenth- through twelfth-grade students. More information can be found at