Preservation Grants for Veterans Collections, Monuments and Memorials

Preservation Grants for Veterans Collections, Monuments and Memorials

Final Application Deadline, April 9, 2021

The Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board (SHRAB) is accepting applications for matching grants to preserve objects, sites, and collections of documents that are significant to the history and experiences of military veterans in the Commonwealth.

Municipalities and non-profit organizations may apply for matching funds for the renovation, rehabilitation, preservation, or enhancement of objects including existing markers, memorials, monuments, and plaques significant to the commemoration of the veterans of any military engagement. Proposals for construction of newmarkers for significant sites currently lacking markings will also be considered. Funds may be awarded for objects and sites that suffer from exposure to the elements, deferred maintenance, or are threatened by destruction. Grants will also be awarded to sites which would benefit by improving public access or adding educational markers. Projects requiring planning including feasibility studies, historic research, or historic evaluations will also be considered. All projects related to physical structures and sites

should follow the“Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historical Properties” and are required to submit a Project Notification Form for the Massachusetts Historical Commission with their application.

Funding will also be awarded for the conservation, preservation or digitization of historically significant documents and archival collections related to the history and experiences of military veterans. Grants to survey and enhance physical and/or digital access to collections and grants for oral history projects will also be considered.

This grant program is offered through support from the Office of the Secretary of the Commonwealth and the Massachusetts General Court. Activities of the MA SHRAB are also supported by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC).

Planning Projects: Requests may be submitted to conduct studies necessary to enable conservation and preservation of documents or an eligible property, including assessment and architectural/engineering fees to conduct such studies. Costs associated with the project, such as signage, photography, legal ads, and conducting and documenting

Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board |

historical research are also eligible.

Preservation Projects: Requests may be submitted for conservation of documents and archival materials, as well as projects to stabilize and rehouse collections in appropriate boxes and housings, and/or to provide or improve public access to these records. Requests may also be submitted for preservation, safety, and accessibility improvements to physical structures and sites. These may include site stabilization, protection, rehabilitation, restoration, ADA compliance, and landscape preservation. Requests may also be submitted to construct new markers and educational signage for publicly- accessible sites.

Eligible costs: Labor, materials, overall site preservation, non-routine landscaping, building code compliance, universal access, signage, project legal notices, and certain other professional services.

Ineligible costs: Routine maintenance, upgrading mechanical systems (HVAC), administrative personnel, and construction of buildings and additions.

Ineligible Projects: Non-historic objects, non-veterans related objects, private residences, privately owned documents, or sites not open to the public.

Municipalities and non-profit organizations that steward eligible objects, sites, and documents located in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts.

Matching funds are granted in amounts up to 50% of total project costs, but not to exceed a maximum grant of $20,000 for applications from single institutions.

Cost sharing is required. The applicant’s financial contribution may include both direct and indirect expenses, third-party contributions, and in-kind contributions including volunteer time. The rate for volunteer time in Massachusetts is $32.96 per hour.

Work completed prior to a grant award is ineligible for funding consideration.

Proposals will be reviewed by the SHRAB and additional subject experts, including representatives from the Massachusetts Historical Commission (MHC). All projects involving physical sites and memorials are reviewed by the MHC for suitability of the project. The review panel may request further information or hold interviews.


  • Level of historical significance of the object, site or collection of documents
  • Potential for public education, as well as public use of and interest in the site oritem(s)
  • Potential for loss or destruction
  • Administrative and financial management capabilities of the applicant
  • Appropriateness of proposed project

Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board |

  • Demonstrated financial need
  • Demonstrated ability to provide matching funds and complete the project
  • Extent of public support
  • Consistency with state and local preservation and community revitalization plans
  • Use of historically accurate materials and preservation techniques
  • Geographic distribution of proposalsAPPLICATION DEADLINE
    Final application due April 9, 2021


By mail:


Massachusetts Archives ATTN: MA SHRAB Veterans

220 Morrissey Blvd Boston, MA 02125

Subject line: Veterans Preservation Project application *Electronic submissions are preferred.

Final awards will be selected in late April 2021. Upon completion and receipt of all required paperwork, funds will be distributed to grantees in May and June 2021.

Upon completion of the project, grantees are required to submit a brief description of completed work, a final budget including sources of funds, and other documentation such as photographs of the completed project. Grantees receiving funds for archival or document collections are encouraged to include information about their collections in the Digital Commonwealth ( ).

Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board |

Access Policy

Compliance Notice

In accordance with state law, applicants may not discriminate on the basis of race, gender, religion, creed, color, national origin, disability, sexual orientation, or age.

Organizations funded under this program must make reasonable accommodations to ensure that people with disabilities have equal physical, programmatic, and communications access as defined by federal law.

Equal Employment

In compliance with the provisions of the Governor’s Code of Fair Practices, Executive Order 227, and Chapter 151B of the Massachusetts General Laws as amended, the applicant shall not discriminate in employment because of race, color, religion, national origin, ancestry, age, sex, or handicap.

Procurement requirements

Applicants must comply with all state and local rules and regulations regarding procurement.

Conflict of Interest

To ensure that the Commissioners acting as grant review panelists are free from conflicts of interest and the appearance of such conflicts, review panelists are required to disclose any past, current, or prospective affiliation they or their immediate family members may have with an actual or potential applicant. “Affiliation” applies to employment, board memberships, independent contractual relationships, advisory or policy relationships, substantial contributor relationships, and other financial relationships. In addition, review panelists are required to disclose any past or current adversarial relationships with actual or potential applicants of a professional or personal nature. Review panelists disclosing an affiliation with an applicant must recuse themselves from participating in the review of said applicant.

Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board |

Bidwell House: Honoring the Mohican Story, with Bonney Hartley

Finding A Place Again: Honoring the Mohican Story of Stockbridge

January 13, 2021 @ 7:00 pm8:00 pm
Free – $10.00
Learn about the Stockbridge-Munsee Community’s Cultural Heritage initiatives with Bonney Hartley

On January 13 at 7 pm, for the second of three Zoom lectures in the new off-season series Hidden in Plain Sight: Native Peoples and the Struggle to Recover Their History in New England.

Though indigenous history in Stockbridge stretches back at least 12,000 years, the colonial-era Mohican story is bookended by two key events: the 1739 construction of the Stockbridge Meetinghouse, and the 1783 Ox Roast feast to thank Stockbridge Mohicans for Revolutionary War service—as they were simultaneously forced to leave these lands for the west. Stockbridge-Munsee Community of Mohican Indians is investigating both of these important and complex sites through archaeology and historical research, awakening new perspectives on these events. The Meetinghouse and Ox Roast sites are also but two of eleven sites that included in the Tribe’s recent release of an online Mohican History Walking Tour of Stockbridge Main Street. Join for a discussion of these cultural heritage initiatives presented by Bonney Hartley.

Bonney Hartley is a cultural resources professional who is currently the Tribal Historic Preservation Manager of the Stockbridge-Munsee Community, of which she is also an enrolled member. Her work focuses on repatriation of ancestors and objects important to the Tribe’s cultural heritage.

Bonney holds a Masters of Social Science Degree in International Relations from the University of Cape Town, South Africa. In 2013 she was awarded the “American Indian Local Hero Award” by the San Francisco Mayor’s office. Bonney also serves on the Board of Trustees of Historic Huguenot Street in New Paltz, NY.

The lecture will be held via Zoom. Registration is required and the Zoom details for the event will be sent to you via email a few days in advance.

Date: January 13, 2021
Time: 7:00 pm – 8:00 pm
Cost: Free – $10.00
Organizer Name: The Bidwell House Museum

Mass History Alliance, Baking with Historians

Conversations on the Commons invites you to:

Baking with Historians

December 18, 2020, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.
Join Margo Shea and Noah Berman as they prepare holiday treats, share historical recipes and cookbooks, and offer tips for busy cooks during the festive season.  Margo Shea, editor at Historians Cooking the Past,  whose philanthropic virtual bake sales have raised thousands of dollars in 2020, will offer guidance and tools for organizing and implementing a flash virtual bake sale to support nonprofit organizations during the COVID-19 pandemic.

REGISTER HERE or visit the Mass History Commons to learn more.

This event will be livestreamed. We will do our best to monitor questions and comments during the livestream. A recording will be publicly available in the Conversations on the Commons Archive.

Questions? Be in touch with Caroline Littlewood:


Conversations on the Commons

Where people from Massachusetts history organizations get to vent, empathize, laugh, complain, think, collaborate, brainstorm, plan, and in general be up to no good.

Suggest a Conversation topic or volunteer as a peer panelist or moderator.

Mass Humanities online event: Threats to our Democracy in Historical Context:

Threats to our Democracy in Historical Context
Thursday, Nov. 19: 7:00-8:00 pm

What can we learn about the current state of our democracy by examining it within the long arc of American history? Please join us for the first event in our “Let’s talk about our democracy” series, hosted by Mass Humanities, for an informative and engaging exploration of this question.

Peter Levine, an expert on civic engagement, will moderate a conversation and audience Q&A with Suzanne Mettler and Robert Lieberman, authors of the new book Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy. By studying previous periods in history when our democracy has been in peril, they discovered four recurring threats: political polarization, racism and nativism, economic inequality, and excessive executive power. Today, for the first time in American history, all four threats are present at the same time, a convergence that marks a grave moment in our democratic experiment. Yet history also points the way to imagine a path toward repairing our civic fabric and renewing democracy. We hope you will join us for this important conversation!

Peter Levine, Associate Dean of Academic Affairs and Lincoln Filene Professor of Citizenship & Public Affairs in Tufts University’s Jonathan Tisch College of Civic Life.

Suzanne Mettler, the John L. Senior Professor of American Institutions at Cornell University.

Robert C. Lieberman, Krieger-Eisenhower Professor of Political Science at Johns Hopkins University.

If you are interested in purchasing a copy of Mettler and Lieberman’s Four Threats: The Recurring Crises of American Democracy, you can click here for options.

To register: Click here to register. A few days before the event, you will receive an email from Jennifer Hall-Witt, Program Officer at Mass Humanities, with the link to access this event.

Questions? Please email Jennifer Hall-Witt at

Click to register

Sign up for Mass History Alliance Conversations on the Commons

Conversations on the Commons: Local Cultural Council grants, COVID & the new normal, and more

Late fall Conversations on the Commons

These interactive community conversations are a great way to come together, share ideas with your peers, and learn what organizations all around the commonwealth are up to.

November 6 – History funding from Local Cultural Councils: A conversation about applying for grants

November 13 – Six months and counting of COVID: Are you finding a new normal?

December 4 – Holidays in history, and end of year fundraising and merchandising

December 18 – Cooking the Past: Commons Holiday Cooking Show

Contributing panelists will share their experiences and reflect on their struggles and successes. Workshop your LCC application, learn about using Google Expeditions, share your merchandising successes, and cook up a storm with Margo Shea!

Conversations on the Commons are exciting opportunities for history organizations to meet with one another and share their thoughts in an ever-changing world and field.

Join us for an online, interactive dialogue that gives people from the Massachusetts history community an opportunity to learn from each other, share ideas, vent, empathize, laugh, complain, think, collaborate, brainstorm, plan, and generally get up to no good.  Their website with more information:

We invite our colleagues from the Commonwealth’s public and community history organizations to submit ideas for future conversations, and participate as peer panelists and moderators.


The Women are Coming to Vote

South Williamstown Community Association

 Historic Preservation+Community+Neighborhood Voic

The Women are Coming to Vote

The hundredth anniversary of the first vote cast by a woman in a presidential election after the 19th Amendment was passed is being celebrated locally by the Northern Berkshire Suffrage Centennial Coalition.

That voter was Phoebe Jordan, a farmer who lived in New Ashford, Massachusetts.  On November 2, 1920, there were 28 registered voters in New Ashford, and Phoebe Jordan was first in line.  New Ashford, for four presidential election cycles – from 1916 to 1932 – was the first town in the country to report its election results.

The Women Are Coming to Vote, a special program coming to you by video produced by Willinet, will be broadcast on Willinet during election week on Channel 1303

            October 30      8pm

            October 31      4pm

            November 1    7pm

            November 2    8pm

 and will be available any time on this link  Shot on location at the restored New Ashford school house where Phoebe voted, starring the actual ballot box she used, it features historian Dr. Barbara Winslow, founder/director emerita of the Shirley Chisholm Project at Brooklyn College, and Cindy Grosso of the New Ashford Historical Commission giving a brief historical introduction.

 This is followed by a reading of a satiric suffrage play published by actress/suffragist Mary Shaw in 1914.  Mary Shaw became involved in the suffrage movement in the early 1890s and was best known for her portrayal of Ibsen’s Hedda Gabler.  Originally titled The Woman in It or Our Friends the Anti-Suffragists, the play was adapted and directed by Ruth Giordano and re-named Utterly Womanly.  The readers are Penny Bucky, Deb Burns, Bette Craig, Nina Keneally and Dawn Rodrigues.

This project is part of a year-long celebration of women gaining the right to vote and is supported by a grant from the Fund for Williamstown of the Berkshire Taconic Community Foundation.  Its constituents and planners have included the South Williamstown Community Foundation, the Williamstown League of Women Voters, the Williamstown Historical Museum, the New Ashford Historical Commission, Williams College and Images Cinema as well as many interested individuals.  Coming next, a video tour of local suffrage sites.

400 Years and Beyond: Commemorating historic events in the twenty-first century

Conversations on the Commons invites you to:


400 Years and Beyond: Commemorating historic events in the twenty-first century

October 23, 2020, 1:00 p.m. – 2:30 p.m.

A Conversation with Linda Coombs, program director at the Aquinnah Cultural Center, Desiree Mobed, Director at the Alden House Historic Site, and Michelle Pecoraro, Executive Director of Plymouth 400After 400 years of colonization of Massachusetts by Europeans, we enter a period of town anniversaries. How can we use them as an occasion to start addressing that “settlement” in Massachusetts also meant “displacement”, the beginning of attenuated conflict, and the “disappearing” of Native American presence and history, often in plain sight? As some leading organizations change their identities to be more inclusive, how are you approaching these events in your own towns and institutions? Do you have celebrations coming up? What can we do to bring residents together and start telling these complex stories? Are you working on this? Are you wondering how to move forward, and thinking about how to mark significant anniversaries without celebrating conflict and dispossession? Bring your questions, observations, and experiences, as well as your obstacles and successes in reframing narratives and using your collections in a new way.

The conversation will be moderated by Gloria Greis, Executive Director at the Needham History Center & Museum. Registration is free.

REGISTER HERE or visit the Mass History Commons to learn more.

This event will be livestreamed. We will do our best to monitor questions and comments during the livestream. A recording will be publicly available in the Conversations on the Commons Archive.

Questions? Be in touch with Caroline Littlewood:

32 actors of stage and screen do a READ IN DuBois’ Black Reconstruction in America

Beginning Aug. 28 and running through Nov. 3, actors of stage and screen will do a marathon Read In of

Black Reconstruction in America. 

By W.E.B. Du Bois

Here is a link to the Read In Series site:

Here is a link to the podcast Housatonic Heritage created about how the Read In happened, a talk with producer MiRi Park and with W.E.B. Du Bois scholar Camesha Scruggs. (click on Podcasts and other Inspirations here, below):

Camesha Scruggs has worked with Housatonic Heritage on video recorded walking tours of WEB Du Bois’ Gt. Barrington, seen here:


Gender Matters: Voting, citizenship and the long 19th amendment

Gender Matters:  Voting, citizenship, and the long 19th amendment.

Aug. 26, 2020, 4 p.m., via zoom


A Radcliffe Series, linked here