Awarded September 7, 1959 by Detention. Another year, another change of categories! The Detention committee retained some of Solacon's changes, and rolled back others and managed to come up with a set of Hugo categories which looked more like the set used starting in the late 60s than any other of the pre-1967 Worldcons.
For the first time, there was a nomination ballot. It was circulated widely through fandom, anyone was allowed to nominate, and then the final ballot was distributed as usual in a PR. (See Early Hugo voting.)
(Note that the modern rules were not yet in places, so categories had as many as ten nominees plus No Award on the final ballot. The committee noted that when the nomination ballot showed there was no clearly preferred nominee, they added No Award as a choice. Additionally, the category titles had not yet been standardized, so one category was "Best STF or Fantasy Movie" on the nomination ballot, but was "Best Hollywood Movie of 1958" on the final ballot.))
There was also an attempted ballot-stuffing: Seventy nominations (a huge number for this period) for R. Lionel Fanthorpe came in from one town in England and none of the voters' names were recognized by British fans. The nominations were ignored and the following year the rule was made that nominators had to be members of the Worldcon. (There was no evidence that Fanthorpe had anything to do with the ballot stuffing.)
Isaac Asimov was the toastmaster at the Hugo Ceremony and was joined by Robert Bloch. According to Asimov, Bloch opened the envelope with the name of the winner of the Short Story Hugo and was so surprised, Asimov had to read over Bloch's shoulder that Bloch had won.
- Best Novel: A Case of Conscience by James Blish
- Best Professional Magazine: The Magazine of Fantasy & Science Fiction ed. by Anthony Boucher and Robert P. Mills
- Best New Author of 1958: No Award
- Best Novelette: "The Big Front Yard" by Clifford D. Simak
- Best Short Story: "That Hell-Bound Train" by Robert Bloch
- Best Fanzine: Fanac ed. by Terry Carr and Ron Ellik
- Best Professional Artist: Frank Kelly Freas
- Best SF or Fantasy Movie: No Award
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