The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) has announced $29 million dollars in awards for 215 humanities projects across the nation. The grants include funding to produce a television series, South by Somewhere, on the foodways, history, and culture of the American South, an archaeological analysis of the overseer’s quarters at James Madison’s Montpelier plantation, and support for the creation of a new permanent gallery at the Please Touch Museum to teach children about the 1876 Centennial Fair in Philadelphia where women activists appealed for voting rights.
This round of funding, NEH’s third and last for fiscal year 2019, supports research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. These peer-reviewed grants were awarded in addition to $48 million in annual operating support provided to the national network of state and territorial humanities councils during fiscal year 2019.
This funding cycle includes grants for several longstanding NEH-supported scholarly editions projects that illuminate foundational texts and the lives of influential individuals. New grants will enable continued work on the papers of presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, and Abraham Lincoln, as well as publication of the complete speeches, correspondence, and writings of Martin Luther King Jr. and Eleanor Roosevelt, plus a new scholarly edition and translation of the Dead Sea Scrolls.
Several others will provide for community-based public programs around significant milestones in national and regional U.S. history, such as grants for statewide reading and discussion programs in Maine tied to the state’s bicentennial in 2020, funding for a three-part documentary on the history and identity of Alaska by filmmaker Ric Burns.
NEH will also support Unladylike 2020, a series of animated films about female trailblazers of the Progressive Era.
NEH Public Scholar grants, which support popular nonfiction books in the humanities, will enable publication of a biography of Sacagawea as a window into the experiences of Northern Plains, Rockies, and Pacific Northwest Native American tribes; an examination of the mythos of Alexander the Great across multiple cultures and eras; and a book on the portrayal of returning WW II veterans in the blockbuster 1946 film The Best Years of Our Lives.