This manual provides information about the Minnesota Historical and Cultural Grants program, funded by Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund. The program’s 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. 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.
The Clean Water, Land and Legacy Amendment to the Minnesota Constitution, passed in November 2008, raises new funds from a sales tax increase to be divided among projects benefitting the outdoors, clean water, parks and trails, and arts and cultural heritage. During the first biennium, $22 million was appropriated to the Minnesota Historical Society, including $6.75 million that was set aside for the new Minnesota Historical & Cultural Grants program. Response was enthusiastic: 894 applications in 13 months requesting more than $38 million. There were 474 grants made, and at least one grant was awarded in every county of the state.
For the current 2012-13 biennium, a portion of the Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund – $24.5 million – has been appropriated again to the Minnesota Historical Society for a variety of history programs around the state – programs intended to preserve and enhance access to Minnesota’s history and its cultural and historical resources. The grants program received $10.5 million for the biennium:
Laws of Minnesota, 2011, 1st Special Session, Chapter 6, Article 4
Sec. 2 Arts and Cultural Heritage
Subd. 5 Minnesota Historical Society
(b) Statewide Historic and Cultural Grants.
(i) $5,250,000 the first year and $5,250,000 the second year are 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. Funds are to be distributed through a competitive grants process. The Minnesota Historical Society shall administer these funds using established grants mechanisms, with assistance from the advisory committee created under Laws 2009, chapter 172, article 4, section 2, subdivision 4, paragraph (b), item (ii).