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Collections Care/Preservation

Libraries and museums care for collections that connect us to history, art, science and the natural world.

Connecting to Collections logoNational Initiative: Connecting to Collections
Connecting to Collections is a national initiative to raise public awareness of the importance of caring for our treasures, and to underscore the fact that these collections are essential to the American story.

Search the Awarded Grants database for grants to programs that strengthen collections care/preservation (issue areas have only been assigned to grants awarded since FY 2009)

Collections care/preservation content on the IMLS Web site:
Grant Awards Announcement: IMLS Provides $241,500 in Grants for the Pacific Territories and Freely Associated States

August 6, 2014 08:44 AM
IMLS announced grants that will help expand digital services and connectivity, digital literacy, professional development, and support summer reading, bookmobiles, collections, and more. Read More

 
IMLS Awards Crowdsourcing Grant to Tiltfactor Laboratory at Dartmouth College

August 1, 2014 03:21 PM
IMLS forum grant will support a consortium to explore crowdsourcing strategies for libraries and archives. Read More

 
IMLS Announces Grants of $2 Million for U.S. Museums

July 10, 2014 08:58 AM
IMLS announces 37 museum grants awarded through three programs: African American History and Culture, Sparks! Ignition Grants for Museums, and Native American/Native Hawaiian Museum Services. Read More

 
Pacific island grantees at a training workshop.
Blog Post: Library Services Training in the Pacific Region

August 13, 2014 01:00 PM
Pacific island grantees convened at a training workshop in Honolulu, Hawaii, to discuss their projects with IMLS staff, share best practices, and obtain professional development training. Read More

 
“Chantecler” theater still, 1911. From the Theater Collection. Museum of the City of New York, 48.367.65.
Blog Post: Chantecler, a Barnyard Fantasy

August 5, 2014 01:54 PM
An IMLS grant to the Museum of the City of New York gives us a look into rare photographs of 20th century theatre production. Read More

 
Actors on stage for the Penumbra Theatre production photo of August Wilson’s Ma Rainey's Black Bottom
Blog Post: The African American Theater History Project: Bringing Together African American Theater and Cultural History from Libraries Around the Country

June 6, 2014 09:02 AM
The project aims to bring digital access to collections that document African American theater. Read More

 
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Preserving African American History and Expanding a Field of Study


The David C. Driskell Center for the Study of the Visual Arts and Culture of African Americans and the African Diaspora at the University of Maryland used an IMLS grant to begin documenting Professor David C. Driskell’s one-of-a-kind archive consisting of an estimated 50,000 objects. The center hired an archivist, graduate student interns, and a consulting archivist to develop procedures for inventorying and making the collection available online. Read More

 
NC C2C Staff: Adrienne Berney, Matthew Hunt, Michelle Vaughn, and LeRae Umfleet
April 2012: North Carolina Initiative Focuses on Preserving State's Cultural Heritage


The North Carolina Connecting to Collections (C2C) program is helping the state’s museums, libraries, and other cultural heritage institutions better care for their collections. This profile demonstrates how the C2C program is making an impact throughout the state by conducting forums, hosting workshops, and providing other valuable resources. Read More

 
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October 2011: 3-D Imaging Technology Preserves Audio Collections


Libraries, archives and museums across the country have special audio collections contained on antique grooved media that are broken, too fragile or too degraded to play back on traditional systems. The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory IRENE/3D project uses digital imaging technology to preserve these sound recordings. Read More

 
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Connecting to Collections: A Report to the Nation


This report describes how IMLS engaged dozens of public and private partners to reach thousands of museum and library professionals with resources and technical assistance to care for endangered collections. Read More

 
cover of Connecting to the World's Collections: Making the Case for the Conservation and Preservation of our Cultural Heritage
Connecting to the World's Collections: Making the Case for the Conservation and Preservation of our Cultural Heritage


Sixty cultural heritage leaders from thirty-two countries, including representatives from Africa, Asia, the Middle East, South America, Australia, Europe, and North America gathered in October 2009 in Salzburg, Austria, to develop a series of practical recommendations to ensure optimal collections conservation worldwide. Read More

 
cover of Capitalize on Collections Care
Capitalize on Collections Care


A publication of Heritage Preservation in partnership with IMLS that outlines fund-raising fundamentals, strategies, and case studies to generate new contributions, increase support, and foster new audiences for collections care activities. Read More

 
Haitian Cultural Recovery Project Podcast

June 10, 2010 11:54 AM
Susan Blakney, a senior painting conservator at Westlake Conservators and member of the AIC Collections Emergency Response Team (AIC-CERT), traveled to Haiti May 4-8 to help conduct an assessment of the country’s artwork damaged by the January earthquake. Blakney and two other conservators visited a dozen museums, which she says have made great strides in retrieving and storing damaged artwork. She describes seeing 500 paintings that were stacked “in a pile like pancakes” awaiting conservation care. Haitians are anxious to save their paintings, which are one of their “national loves and largest exports,” she said. However, the country doesn’t have the materials to conserve the “vivid, colorful, and thematic” artworks that are part of their social history, she says. Conservators will be needed for many years to help restore the country’s artwork and to train Haitian artists on conservation techniques. Blakney is certain that the paintings she assessed can be restored to exhibition standards. Read More