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Humanities Endowment Awards $1.7 Million for Three Special Projects and Five at Libraries and Archives

Three earn recognition as We the People projects

WASHINGTON, D.C. (November 10, 2004) -- The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) today announced grants of more than $1.7 million for implementation of eight public humanities projects, including five at libraries and archives.

Three of these have been designated as We the People projects, a special recognition by the NEH for model projects that advance the study, teaching, and understanding of American history and culture:

  • The New York Historical Society in New York City will receive $218,000 to implement a national tour of a panel exhibition, website, catalog, and public programs interpreting Alexander Hamilton's role in the creation of American government and culture;
  • Michigan State University, East Lansing, will receive $284,993 to develop a web-based archive of catalogued segments from American Black Journal, one of the longest running television programs focusing on African-American culture and public affairs; and
  • The National Foundation for Jewish Culture in New York City will receive $99,520 to implement a series of 30 programs at ten venues across the United States examining key American Jewish texts that illuminate the intersection of Jewish and mainstream culture.

"From Renaissance manuscripts, to Alexander Hamilton's role in America, to African-American television programming, these NEH grants will strengthen the intellectual and cultural life of the nation," said NEH Chairman Bruce Cole. "Public programs and traveling exhibitions give new audiences access to the great ideas, events, and individuals of history."

With other grants announced today by NEH, the Newberry Library in Chicago, Ill., will implement an exhibition of books, manuscripts, maps, art, and photographs to explore the encounters of Native Americans with Lewis and Clark's U.S. Corps of Discovery between 1804 and 1806 and to examine the impact of those encounters during the past 200 years; Nebraska's Opera Omaha will implement a series of lectures, talks, and seminars exploring the social, political, and historical influences that inspired the four productions in the 2004-05 season; the New York Public Library will implement an exhibition, catalog, website, and public programs about the making, ownership, influence, and aesthetics of Medieval and Renaissance illuminated manuscripts; National Video Resources in New York City will implement a series of scholar-led film and reading and discussion programs at 50 U.S. libraries examining the military, social, and political history of the United States during the World War I era; and Poets House, Inc., also of New York City, will implement reading and discussion programs, bus and subway posters, and a companion website exploring 20th-century poetry.

NEH grants are awarded on a competitive basis. Throughout the year, humanities experts outside of the Endowment and members of the National Council on the Humanities consider all applications and advise NEH on the quality and significance of each proposed project.

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About the National Endowment for the Humanities

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: www.neh.gov.

Media Contacts: Office of Communications at (202) 606-8446 or info@neh.gov