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Rhode Island

Between 2008 and 2012, institutions and individuals in Rhode Island received $6.4 million from the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities for projects that explore the human endeavor and preserve our cultural heritage.

Below are some examples.

  • James Joyce’s novel Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man made its first appearance in 1914 in a little journal called The Egoist, one of several important periodicals digitized at Brown University for the Modernist Journals Project, which has been supported by two grants totaling $478,000.
  • Vazira Zamindar at Brown University received a $50,400 research grant to study archaeology, Islam, and the Pre-Islamic Buddhist art in South Asia of the Gandhara period, building on an earlier summer stipend she had received to study the same topic.
  • Thirty schoolteachers attended a two-week institute on the rise of slavery in New England and its role in the northern economy. The conference, conducted by the Rhode Island Historical Society, Providence, was supported with a $132,000 grant.
  • Archival holdings relating Rhode Island’s history from colonial times to the late 1900s remain spread among numerous depositories, but are united online in a database at Brown University that informs researchers about associated collections and how to find them. NEH has supported this scholarly resource with a $228,000 grant.
  • The John Carter Brown Library specializes in manuscripts, maps, and other documents from international sources describing the unfolding drama of European discovery and colonization of the New World from 1492 to 1825. The library has been awarded $270,000 to support a fellowship program for NEH designated scholars. 
  • The Breakers, residence of Cornelius Vanderbilt II, is one of America’s best-known historic properties. The Preservation Society of Newport County has received a $28,000 grant to improve the building’s internal climate to better protect its Gilded Age art and furnishings.
  • The most valuable object at the Newport Art Museum may be the John N.A. Griswold House, a National Historic Landmark. With a $6,000 grant, the museum installed environmental monitoring equipment to preserve its collection covering three centuries of New England art.
  • The Little Compton Historical Society has received two grants totaling $10,000 to help purchase supplies as its professionally trained team of volunteers works to preserve and archive a 10,000-piece collection of nineteenth-century clothing, books, and photos of local historical interest.
  • For sixteen years, the Rhode Island Council for the Humanities has sponsored Action Speaks, a panel discussion series on Underappreciated Dates That Changed America. Discussions of the debut of Death of a Salesman, the announcement of FDR’s Good Neighbor policy, and other topics are then edited for radio broadcast. This program was recently expanded through an NEH grant of $75,000.