Humanities Collections and Reference Resources

Division of Preservation and Access

Grant Snapshot

Maximum award amount

Implementation projects: $350,000
Foundations projects: $50,000 (NEH offers an additional $10,000 to support interinstitutional planning and pilot activities).

Funding Opportunity for


Expected output

Digitized Collection;
Web Resources

Period of performance

Implementation projects: three years Foundations projects: two years

Application available (anticipated)

Next deadline (anticipated)

Expected notification date

Project start date

HCRR advances scholarship, education, and public programming in the humanities by helping libraries, archives, museums, and historical organizations across the country steward important collections of books and manuscripts, photographs, sound recordings and moving images, archaeological and ethnographic artifacts, art and material culture, and digital objects. The program strengthens efforts to extend the reach of such materials and make their intellectual content widely accessible. Awards also support the creation of reference resources that facilitate the use of cultural materials, from works that provide basic information quickly to tools that synthesize and codify knowledge of a subject for in-depth investigation.

Projects may address the holdings or activities of a single institution or may involve partnerships between organizations. Collaboration between humanities experts and information professionals is essential to broaden the scope of, and audiences for, proposed collections or reference resources. You should design a project that facilitates sharing, exchange, and the interoperability of humanities information and products, as well as ensures their long-term availability. Projects should expand participation in cultural heritage and promote engagement with primary sources.

Review your application package

Read the Notice of Funding Opportunity and study the application package and supplementary materials.

Application Materials and Program Resources

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources Notice of Funding Opportunity 2023 (PDF)

Humanities Collections and Reference Resources application package

List of recently funded projects in this program

Sample Application Narratives

Foundations Project: Barnum Museum, Planning to Digitize the Collections

Foundations Project: Bryn Mawr College, History of Women's Education Open Access Portal Project

Foundations Project: Philadelphia Museum of Art, Building a Duchamp Research Portal

Implementation Project: University of Nebraska, Genoa Indian School Digital Reconciliation Project

Implementation Project: Barnum Museum, Digitizing the P.T. Barnum Collections

Implementation Project: Bryn Mawr College, Documenting the Student Experience at the Seven Sisters Colleges

Implementation Project: Cal. State University-Dominguez Hills, Digitizing Records of the Internment of Japanese Americans

Implementation Project: Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, The American Soldier in World War II

Implementation Project: Museum of the City of New York, Digitizing the Museum's Ephemera Collections

Implementation Project: Rutgers University-Camden, Encyclopedia of Greater Philadelphia

Implementation Project: University of Massachusetts, Boston, Digitizing Plimoth Plantation’s 17th-Century Historical Archaeology Collections

Implementation Project: U. of Southern Mississippi, Providing Access to the Struggle for Civil Rights in Mississippi

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Complete your application package

Follow the instructions outlined in the Notice of Funding Opportunity and in the instructions. 

Submit your application package on

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Program Statistics

In the last five competitions this program received an average of
199 Applications
per year
This grant has a
18% Funding Ratio
NEH made an average of
36 Awards
per year

Examples of Projects Funded by this Grant Program