Documenting Democracy: Access to Historical Records Projects
Grant: Documenting Democracy: Access to Historical Records Projects
Agency: National Archives and Records Administration (NARA)
Division: National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC)
Deadline: This competition is closed. The deadline was October 4, 2012.
Description: The National Historical Publications and Records Commission seeks proposals that promote the preservation and use of the nation's most valuable archival resources. Projects should expand understanding of the American past by facilitating and enhancing access to primary source materials. Applicants may submit proposals for one or any combination of the following four project categories:
Basic Processing: Proposals may be submitted for establishing archives and undertaking basic processing activities that promote the preservation and use of America's documentary heritage. Proposals must demonstrate how the applicant employs the best and most cost-effective archival methods.
Detailed Processing: For collections with proven high research demand or substantial preservation concerns, applicants may propose to conduct detailed processing and preservation reformatting of collections of national significance. For projects that focus entirely on detailed processing, the Commission will give preference to repositories that have virtually all of their collections processed sufficiently so that researchers can find them through online searches. Applicants may propose limited digitization of series or items that have the most potential to benefit a broad public. Applicants should also outline their publicity and outreach plans for promoting use of collections.
Documentary Heritage: Documentary heritage projects create more comprehensive documentation of United States history and culture by supporting projects that identify, survey, collect and make available nationally significant records relating to groups and topics traditionally underrepresented in the historical record. Eligible activities include arrangement and description projects, documentation surveys, archival needs assessments or some combination of the three.
Retrospective Conversion of Descriptive Information: Proposals may be submitted for converting legacy finding aids and other sources of descriptive information into formats that provide improved online access to collections. Activities may include converting card catalogs and paper finding aids so that they may be made available electronically, or creating a comprehensive online database or finding aid from information only available in a variety of non-compatible formats.
Fit for public broadcasting: Public media stations can use funds from this program to archive their collections and information. Disseminating results is an important requirement of projects funded by this grant so stations who plan to use these funds to process their records should clearly articulate how the processed collections will be available to the public. Because results dissemination is so important, stations may be able to partner with an archive or other repository to help disseminate the project's results and conduct public education activities.
Eligibility: Archives and other repositories of historical documents are eligible if they are part of nonprofit organizations; colleges, universities and other academic institutions; state or local government agencies; or federally-acknowledged or state-recognized Native American tribes or groups. Applicant organizations must be registered in Central Contractor Registration (CCR) prior to submitting an application, maintain CCR registration throughout the application and award process and include a valid DUNS number in their application.
Anticipated funding: The Commission expects to make up to 15 grants in this program for a total of up to $1,200,000. Each grant is up to $200,000 and normally lasts for one to two years. NHPRC support begins no earlier than July 1, 2013. Cost sharing is required. NHPRC will provide up to 50 percent of the total project costs.
How to apply: Before beginning the process, applicants are encouraged to contact Alexander Lorch, Archives Program Officer, who may be able to advise the applicant about the review process, answer questions about what activities are eligible for support and supply samples or successful applications. He may also be able to read and comment on a preliminary draft, if one is submitted at least two months before the deadline. Applicants should also contact their State Historical Records Advisory Board about the proposal and seek the board's advice. Applications must be submitted electronically on Grants.gov. Online submission requires registration, a process that usually takes three to five business days but can take as long as four weeks. Be sure to visit Grants.gov and begin registering well in advance of the deadline.