Grants Program Overview

Program Goals

To preserve and enhance access to Minnesota's cultural and historical resources and to support projects of enduring value for the cause of history and historic preservation across the state.

Use the manual to help you prepare your grant application. First, determine whether or not your project idea is eligible for funding. (NOTE: Program funds must be used to supplement, not substitute for, traditional sources of funding.) Then follow the steps outlined for the grant application process of the project category you choose. The manual also summarizes the requirements for administering grant projects.

Where the Money Came From

When Minnesota voters passed the Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment, the state legislature created the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund (H.F. 1231), a portion of which was appropriated to the Minnesota Historical Society for history-related projects around the state. One of those new initiatives is the Statewide Historical and Cultural Grants program, seeded by a pool of $6.75 million to be awarded in the 2010-11 biennium for "projects of enduring value for the cause of history and historic preservation."

The new grants program took shape over the summer of 2009. At meetings held across the state, more than 150 representatives of county and local historical organizations offered their input on how to use the special legislative funding most effectively. Among the most popular aspects of the proposed grant guidelines: a range of grant sizes and the potential for partnerships.

"This grant program will be a benchmark in its potential to reshape the future for local history and historic preservation in Minnesota," says Britta Bloomberg, past head of the Minnesota History Society Historic Preservation Department. "What we do in the first biennium will set the stage for ongoing funding of an initiative that has a 25-year span."

Historic Resources Advisory Committee

Minnesota History Coalition Partners

Statewide Update and Input Meetings

Report to the Legislature

On January 15, the Society released its first report to the Legislature and Governor on activities carried out with support from the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund in this first year of the Fund's existence. Due to the short amount of time since the passage of the first legacy appropriation bill, we consider this first report to be an interim or progress report. Society staff members have dedicated many, many hours to planning and implementing educational programs, grants and partnerships to deliver Minnesota history across the state, at the History Center, at historic sites and via the latest forms of technology.

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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.