The Museum Association of New York (MANY) has announced in a press release that 98 museums across New York State have been selected to participate in an IMLS CARES Act grant program, titled “Building Capacity, Creating Sustainability, and Growing Accessibility.”
The grant project is designed to help support those museums that have been impacted by the pandemic and subsequent quarantine, so they may share their collections and reach audiences who cannot physically visit their museums. Under the program, 200 staff will be trained in using new hardware and software in order to engage communities and reach new audiences.
“We are honored to be awarded IMLS CARES act funding and excited to be able to make an impact on the work of our colleagues and their museums across New York State,” said Erika Sanger, MANY Executive Director. “We are living in an age of transition, experience a radical shift in our ways of learning and communicating. The group selected captures the diversity of our shared history in NY and our nation. The stories embodied in the museums’ collections and the storytelling talents of their interpretive staff are the heart of the project.”
The project will extend over the course of 2 years, and museums will be able to identify a program to virtually deliver content to their audiences based on stories within their archives that reveal cultural and racial diversity in their communities.
In the Adirondack region, North Country Underground Railroad Historical Association (NCUGRHA) will be using this grant to move their exhibits to the next level, and they have identified two projects. The first project will focus on the hiding place of formerly enslaved people at the home of Stephen Keese Smith. and for the second project, many may know of Martin Tankard, but fewer know of another family member- one who was ahead of her time. With an exhibit in the North Star Underground Railroad Museum, the NCUGRHA will tell a more emergent story of the Underground Railroad in the Lake Champlain region of New York.
Other North Country Project Participants are as follows:
Akwasasne Cultural Center and Museum
John Brown Lives!
Sackets Harbor Battlefield State Historic Site