Skip to main content



Between 2008 and 2012, institutions and individuals in Delaware received $5 million from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Delaware Humanities Forum for projects that explore the human endeavor and preserve our cultural heritage.

Below are some examples.

  • Graduate-level study for thirty-five future conservators of material culture at the University of Delaware, Newark, became possible through three grants totaling $676,000 to the Winterthur/ University of Delaware master’s-level Art Conservation Program, one of only five in the country training conservation professionals to care for America’s cultural heritage.
  • The Hagley Museum and Library in Wilmington interprets the site of the original DuPont Company Powder Mill and holds several major collections on the history of American business. A $450,000 grant was used to help renovate its Hall of Records to better preserve its archives.
  • The University of Delaware received a $300,000 grant to support a collaborative effort with the University of Oregon and several museums to establish a digital collection of images of plain and fancy needlepoint made by American girls as part of their education since the seventeenth century.
  • The Corbit Calloway Memorial Library, Odessa, was granted $3,900 toward the preservation of about 150 oversize maps and posters in its Del-Mar-Va special collection depicting counties and towns on the Delmarva Peninsula during the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.
  • Historic Red Clay Valley, operator of the Wilmington and Western Railroad’s Delaware’s Operating Railroad Museum, received a $6,000 grant for a preservation assessment of its collection of documents and artifacts on railroad history and operations in northern Delaware.
  • The Old Swedes Church Foundation, Wilmington, was awarded $6,000 for a preservation survey of its early records and manuscripts documenting the history of the New Sweden Colony and of the congregation of Holy Trinity Old Swedes Church going back to 1697.
  • Assisted by a $40,000 grant, the Delaware Division of Parks and Recreation planned expanded programs in First State Heritage Park in Dover. New materials, including living history programs, self-guided audio tours, and signage, covered the 18 years before and after 1787, when Delaware became the first state to ratify the Constitution.
  • The Delaware Industrial History Initiative, a grant program for state heritage agencies administered by the Delaware Humanities Forum, digitally documented Delawareans’ experiences with industrialization and industrial decline, creating a valuable resource for students and researchers.
  • Established in 1986, the Delaware Humanities Forum’s Visiting Scholars Program brings university professors and subject experts to speak in local classrooms, at no cost to the school, on topics such as Delaware history, African-American history, anthropology, literature, and teen ethics.
  • With assistance from the Delaware Humanities Forum, the Smithsonian traveling exhibit The Way We Worked, exploring 150 years of American labor visited Dover Air Force Base, Ocean View, Bethel, and Yorklyn.