Brown announces more than $2.1 million to improve Ohio museums


WASHINGTON, DC – Today, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) of the Office of Museum Services has awarded nine grants totaling $2,100,065 to museums and historic centers of Ohio. Funds will be used to improve facilities, enhance participants’ learning experiences and strengthen community relationships. These awards are part of three IMLS programs: The Inspire! Grants for Small Museums Initiative, National Leadership Grants and Museums for America program.

“Great museums and historic centers in Ohio play an important role in our understanding of the world and have been particularly affected during the Covid-19 pandemic,” Brown said. “These funds will allow Ohio’s cultural and educational institutions to continue to support their workers while providing a vital service to local communities for generations to come.”

Museums receiving funding include:

· $50,000 to Cantonal art museum to enhance its Museum To Go program, which offers free virtual exhibit tours and hands-on, multidisciplinary art lessons to Stark County fourth through sixth graders.

· $250,000 to Cincinnati Museum Center to fabricate and install the “Ancient Worlds Hide in Plain Sight” exhibit. Using an interdisciplinary approach and an inclusive lens, the exhibition will blend science, history and technology to bring stories to life about the city’s prehistoric environment.

· $475,160 to Cleveland Museum of Natural History for his exhibition “Biological Processes: We Are All Connected” and for preserving and improving access to the Hamann-Todd and non-human primate collection.

· $214,672 to Franklin County Historical Society for COSI, the Center for Science and Industry, to conduct a multi-site research project to explore the motivations, expectations and satisfaction of museum visitors, which will provide insights to create visitor-centered museum experiences .

· $299,150 to Ohio Historical Society to launch its “Marking Queer Ohio” project to identify stories, spaces, and places that reflect the impact of LGBTQ+ Ohioans in shaping the state’s broader history, and to pilot a support program model community to encourage museum visits through the Museums for All initiative, whereby museums offer free or discounted entry to food aid recipients.

· $50,000 at Ross Museum of Art at Ohio Wesleyan University to professionally preserve 31 prints in its permanent educational collection. This project will result in stabilized prints that can be used for display and educational purposes.

· $114,445 to Taft Museum of Art improve the documentation of its permanent collections and make them fully available and accessible on its website for a wide audience. The project will provide the museum with greater intellectual control over the collection and better searchability through the online collections portal for internal and external users.

· $247,144 to Trumbull County Historical Society to digitize 2,000 oversized archival pieces at the museum and work with the Trumbull County Collections Network to digitize other oversized archives throughout the county. Completion of this project will provide public access to maps and plans that highlight a part of Ohio that no longer exists and will also build a stronger historic community in the county through shared resources.

· $399,494 to Cincinnati Zoological Society for the Cincinnati Zoo and Botanical Garden to conduct research to improve the conservation of endangered oak species. The project includes the training of a post-doctoral student, a graduate student and interns, and new digital tools to help future research on oaks and other endangered species.

IMLS is the primary source of federal support for libraries and museums nationwide. IMLS advances, supports, and strengthens museums, libraries, and related organizations in the United States through grantmaking, research, and policy development. To learn more about IMLS, click here.

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