Published August 1, 2022

Today, Virginia Humanities announced eighteen new grants totaling $153,200 to nonprofit organizations across the Commonwealth.

“We’ve been supporting humanities-based projects across Virginia since our founding in 1974,” said Matthew Gibson, Virginia Humanities’ executive director. “This round of grants reaches from Arlington and Fairfax in Northern Virginia to Cape Charles on Virginia’s Eastern Shore, and to Konnarock in Southwest Virginia. They support projects by museums, libraries, historical societies, and historic sites that are the cultural centers of rural, suburban, and metropolitan communities across the state.”

“Our grantees connect us to new ideas, new perspectives; to pieces of the Virginia story we did not know and to communities in parts of the state we would have difficulty reaching otherwise,” said David Bearinger, senior director of Grants & Global Virginia Programs. “Seven of the grants in this most recent cycle are to organizations that have never received support from Virginia Humanities before. We are grateful to these and to all our grantees over the past forty-seven years, as indispensable partners nourishing every aspect of our work statewide.”

In May, Virginia Humanities announced changes to our grants programs. Two new grants programs (Regular Grants and Rapid Grants) were announced along with changes that streamlined the application and reporting process, making the grants programs more accessible.

To learn more about Virginia Humanities’ grants program, visit VirginiaHumanities.org/grants.

The following organizations received grants from Virginia Humanities between April and July 2022:

Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, Richmond Chapter: $5,000 (Project: Afro-American Historical & Genealogical Society, Greater Richmond Chapter Website) 

Richmond, VA–Redesign of the organization’s website to increase accessibility and support research by members as well as non-members as well as the sharing of information for mutual support. 

Arlington County Historical Society: $5,000 (Project: Memorializing the Enslaved in Arlington) 

Arlington, VA–The first phase of a longer-term effort to identify the men, women, and children who were enslaved in Arlington County; to uncover what can be learned about their lives; and to memorialize their lives through markers installed in locations County-wide. 

Blue Ridge Discovery Center: $1,750 (Project: Exhibit of Historic Timeline at Blue Ridge Discovery Center) 

Konnarock, VA—Research, printing, and installation of an historical timeline documenting the history of the Konnarock Training School in relation to the social, economic, and cultural history of the Mount Rogers area in Southwestern Virginia. 

Catticus Corporation: $10,000 (Project: Barbara Johns Website Project) 

Berkeley, CA—A series of consultations with Virginia teachers, part of a larger effort to create an interactive website bringing the stories of Barbara Rose Johns, the student strike at Moton High School, and school desegregation in Prince Edward County, Virginia to life for students as well as other users state-and-nationwide. 

George Mason University, Center for Humanities Research: $10,000 (Project: Alienation and Belonging: Shifting Cultural Landscapes in Northern Virginia) 

Fairfax, VA—Planning for a longer-term project, including an initial group of oral history interviews, exploring the story of Northern Virginia by centering the voices and perspectives of immigrants and refugees, as well as indigenous persons from other parts of the world now living in the region. 

James Madison University: $5,400 (Project: A Miserable Revenge: Recovering 19th-Century Black Literature from the Shenandoah Valley, Phase 1) 

Harrisonburg, VA—Transcription of a handwritten and previously unpublished novel written ca. 1880 by George Newman, an African American educator from the Winchester area who later lived and worked in Harrisonburg/Rockingham County.  The novel is one of the earliest-known works of fiction by an African American writer. 

Josephine School Community Museum: $2,500 (Project: Juneteenth Festival)     

Berryville, VA—The first annual Juneteenth Festival in Clarke County, designed to attract both visitors and members of the local community with a day of lectures, performances, exhibits, and other presentations. 

Library of Virginia: $11,000 (Project: “Indigenous Perspectives: Exhibition Planning) 

Richmond, VA—A series of consultations with leaders from Virginia’s eleven state-recognized Native tribes, in preparation for a major exhibition featuring Native perspectives on historical documents in the Library’s collections, looking at both familiar and lesser-known pieces of the Virginia story. 

Louisa County Historical Society: $7,000 (Project: Representing our Residents: African American History at the Louisa County Historical Society) 

Louisa, VA—A series of oral history interviews and public outreach activities, part of the Historical Society’s ongoing efforts to build new and stronger relationships with Louisa’s African American communities and to make the interpretation of African American life, history, and culture a central part the organization’s work. 

National D-Day Memorial: $8,000 (Project: Someone Talked! A Podcast of the National D-Day Memorial) 

Bedford, VA—A series of podcasts on the history of World War II, featuring conversations between the prolific WWII historian John McManus and other scholars and writers whose work is contributing to a more complete understanding of the War, its causes and impact; designed to reach and engage new audiences now that the generation that lived through WWII has passed. 

One Shared Story: $3,000 (Project: Legacy’s Footprints) 

Gordonsville, VA—Research, documentation, and the training of local volunteers, providing the essential background information to support the nomination of two Louisa County churches—Bright Hope Baptist and Foster Creek Baptist—to the National Register of Historic Places.  

Piedmont Virginia Community College: $10,000 (Project: PVCC Prison Creative Arts Project) 

Charlottesville, VA—A two-part initiative designed, first, to collect original writing in the form of personal storytelling from incarcerated PVCC students; and then to create a theatrical production drawing from these personal testimonies.  The project builds on PVCC’s Higher Education in Prison Program, established in 2006 and is designed to reach PVCC’s 7,500-member community of students, faculty, and staff—as well as audiences beyond. 

Pocahontas Reframed Storytellers Film Festival: $20,000 

King William, VA/Richmond, VA–The Sixth annual Pocahontas Reframed Native American Film Festival held each year in Richmond and currently the largest, most successful Native film festival on the East Coast. 

Restless Books: $6,500 

Brooklyn, NY—A series of writing workshops designed to draw forth the personal stories of undocumented immigrants—mostly from Latin America—and then to facilitate the sharing of these stories with the wider community; a collaboration between a non-profit book publisher specializing in immigrant literature and The Dream Project, an Arlington-based organization that provides scholarship and mentorship support to undocumented students seeking to continue their education beyond high school. 

Rotary Club of Cape Charles: $9,800 

Cape Charles, VA—Research and development of a Walking Tour  (print and digital versions) of African American historic sites in the town of Cape Charles on Virginia’s Eastern Shore, building in part on the work of historian Frances Bibbins Latimer.  

Stratford Hall: $10,000 

Stratford, VA–Two new exhibits and a series of related programs on the lives of enslaved individuals at Stratford Hall, part of a long-term effort to broaden and deepen interpretation at Robert E. Lee’s birthplace in Westmoreland County. 

Rector & Visitors of the University of Virginia (Kluge-Ruhe Aboriginal Art Museum): $8,250 

Charlottesville, VA—Production of three short videos introducing the Monacan Nation and its people as custodians of the lands and waters in and around Charlottesville, designed for use as Land Acknowledgements by a broad array of non-profit organizations and by the Monacan Nation as an introduction to their history and culture. 

Virginia Tech Foundation (WFTV—Radio IQ): Tribal Truths Podcast – $20,000

Blacksburg, VA—The grant will support production of four new episodes to be released next year. As with the pilot episode (supported by a previous Virginia Humanities grant) the new episodes will focus on the histories and cultures of state and federally recognized Tribes in Virginia. Each episode is developed in cooperation with tribal leaders and features an Indigenous host/narrator and tribal members.

Vanessa Adkins, right, is apprenticing under her cousin Jessica Canaday Stewart learning the finer points of traditional Chickahominy dancing. Photos taken at the Fall Festival and Pow Wow in Charles City on Saturday, Sept. 22, 2012.

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