Funds: Student Kristy Warren poses by a painting of Sir George Somers at the Historical Society. She has just been awarded $7,500 towards her PhD research into Bermuda’s history. *Photo by Helen Jardine
Funds: Student Kristy Warren poses by a painting of Sir George Somers at the Historical Society. She has just been awarded $7,500 towards her PhD research into Bermuda’s history. *Photo by Helen Jardine
Historian Kristy Warren hates not being able to ­answer a question about Bermuda's history.

It is this thirst for knowledge about her country that has helped her win a ­monetary award from the Bermuda Historical ­Society.

She is currently undertaking research for her PhD research paper on Bermuda Independence, which has the working title, A Colonial Society in a Post Colonial World.

"I will be looking at independence debates in Bermuda both past and present," she said. "It is a debate that has stretched over 40 years.

"The more I read, and the more I learn, the more my focus changes."

She plans to use the $7,500 money to pay for her school fees at Warwick University in England, and hopes to graduate in 2011.

Ms Warren, who obtained an MA from Warwick in 2002, said she was "very honoured" to receive the award.

"The Historical Society told me they liked my CV," she said. "It listed all the things I've accomplished regarding my research with Bermudian history.

"For example, for my Master degree called Race and Ethnic, I focused my research paper on race and class in Bermudian society.

"I actually didn't interview anyone for this. It was all research-based, using the Bermuda Archives and the National Archives.

"To me it was just the whole process I enjoyed - sitting down and reading commonwealth documents and files that may have been secret and confidential at one point.

"I looked at historical moments in race relations such as the theatre boycott of 1959."

For her undergraduate degree Ms Warren took a double major in English and History and looked at 17th century Bermuda religious dissidence.

She said she has always had an interest in local ­history.

"I'm just curious," she said. "I felt that when I was at school I didn't learn a lot of Bermudian history. And when people ask me questions about Bermuda I hate not knowing the answer."

From 2004 to 2007 Ms Warren worked at the National Archives in London cataloguing original correspondence between Bermuda Governors and the head office in London.

"I also had the chance to peek at records from Bahamas and Trinidad and Jamaica," she said. "There were a lot of similarities between the countries."

President of the Bermuda Historical Society Andrew Bermingham described Kristy as the "ideal" recipient for this award.

"Kristy was selected by a committee of Shirley Pearman and John Cox as being a worthy recipient," he said. "Our award is tailored for a history graduate and is fairly specific. In some ways Bermudian historians are a rare breed."

At the cheque presentation on Wednesday Culture Minister Neletha Butterfield said: "The world - and Bermuda specifically - would be a greater place with more people like Kristy who has such good career goals to follow."