For a four-page bio of Nancy, read A Woman as Strong as Mountains.

Scroll down for a list of Wood’s awards, professional connections, and photo album of her life.



Nancy C. Wood (1936-2013) was a writer and photographer who produced 28 books about the American southwest. The region’s wilderness and Native American spirituality inspired her life view and profound poetry. Nancy was born in 1936 to a Catholic family in Trenton, New Jersey and fled west to Colorado and New Mexico in 1958. She won numerous awards, including a literature fellowship from the National Endowment for the Arts, the Lee Bennett Hopkins Poetry Award, and the International Reading Association Teacher’s Choice Award. Three of her poems are in the Unitarian Universalist hymnal.

A wild and wondrous 17-page biography of Nancy Wood appears as the introduction to Eye of the West. Buy the book and support her rebellious legacy.

Researchers should consult the Nancy C. Wood Papers and the Nancy Wood Photographic Archive at the University of New Mexico Center for Southwest Research. The papers include her published articles, book manuscript drafts, correspondence, and recorded interviews and research notes for her nonfiction books.


  • Independent Publisher Book Awards (the IPPYs) for best Mountain West regional fiction (2013)
  • Zia Award for The Soledad Crucifixion (2013)
  • Western Heritage Award for Outstanding Photography Book from the National Cowboy & Western Heritage Museum (2008)
  • Western Writers of America Spur Award (2005)
  • Mountains and Plains Booksellers Award (2005, 1998)
  • Zia Award (2005)
  • Frank Waters Lifetime Achievement Award (2004)
  • Lee Bennett Hopkins Children’s Poetry Award (1994)
  • National Endowment for the Arts Grant for Literature (1987)
  • Pulitzer Prize Nominee for musical adaptation of poetry (1976)

Nancy’s Connections

Nancy supported or worked with a range of arts, literature, and history organizations over the years. Please click on them to learn more.