The grant program appropriation sets the general parameters for applicant and project eligibility. The appropriation specifies funding for
history programs and projects operated or conducted by or through local, county, regional or other historical or cultural organizations; or for activities to preserve significant historic and cultural resources.
The grant program requires eligibility in two ways. First, the applicant needs to be eligible and second; the project needs to be eligible. The applicant and project must both be eligible prior to submitting an application (including pre-application).
Grant projects must be ready to begin once the grant is awarded. This includes applicable permissions from the grantee’s board or governing entity.
Applicant must have legal authority to implement change including adjacent areas as stated in the grant proposal regarding real property (historic property) or collections.


All applicant organizations must reside in the state of Minnesota.
  • Nonprofit 501(c)(3) organizations. Organizations must be IRS compliant (check your status with Guidestar) when requesting an account and/or submitting an application (including pre-application).
  • State and local government units
  • Federally-recognized tribes
  • Educational institutions

NONPROFIT 501(C)(3):

Nonprofit/nongovernmental organizations recognized by the Internal Revenue Service as 501(c)(3) are eligible applicants. The Minnesota Historical Society grant records must document each applicant’s eligibility for the grant program. It is the sole responsibility of the applicant to prove it is eligible. Failure to provide sufficient documentation of 501(c)(3) status will render a nonprofit applicant ineligible.
Please note that only those churches, synagogues, mosques, etc. (hereafter ‘churches’), recognized with formal 501(c)(3) status by the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) are considered eligible applicants.
Some churches may be subordinate to a central church, such as a council, diocese or a synod. The IRS allows for Group Exemptions in IRS Publication 4573. According to this publication, any church acting as a central organization must possess 501(c)(3) status. Any church wishing to apply for Minnesota Historical & Cultural Heritage Grants as a subordinate organization must:
  • Submit a copy of the Group Exemption letter.
  • Provide the Federal Employer Identification Number of the central organization, and, if available, the Federal Employer Identification Number of the subordinate (applicant) organization.
  • If the group exemption points to another document listing the organization as an official subordinate organization, a copy of that document must also be included. For example, the Group Exemption for the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (covering all Roman Catholic Churches) points to enumeration in the Official Catholic Directory. A copy of the page in the directory showing the organization must be included.


Any subunit of government in the State of Minnesota is an eligible applicant, including but not limited to state agencies, state or local commissions, municipal governments, school districts, and other governmental agencies. Federal agencies are not eligible to apply.


Any of the 11 federally-recognized tribes or their subunits in Minnesota are considered eligible applicants. See the Minnesota Secretary of State’s website for a list of eligible tribes.


Accredited educational institutions meeting the definition of educational institutions in the Internal Revenue Code are eligible. IRC Title 26, 170(b)(1)(A)(ii): an educational organization which normally maintains a regular faculty and curriculum and normally has a regularly enrolled body of pupils or students in attendance at the place where its educational activities are regularly carried on. (Title I (20 U.S.C. 1001 et seq.) as amended.) Documentation of accreditation may be required. 

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The Minnesota Historical and Cultural Grants Program has been made possible by the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund through the vote of Minnesotans on November 4, 2008. Administered by the Minnesota Historical Society.