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Chicago History Museum Receives $349,944 National Endowment for the Humanities Grant


The Chicago History Museum today announced an award of $349,944 from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The grant is part of the Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections category and will support critical next steps in the Museum’s strategy for preventive collection conservation and reduced energy consumption. Notably, the grant will provide a more comfortable experience for our visitors and staff.

“The Chicago History Museum is committed to sharing Chicago stories for generations to come, and the preservation and systems updates this NEH grant supports are vital to that mission,” said Donald Lassere, president and CEO of the Chicago History Museum. “We are honored to be awarded a Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections grant and eager to use these funds to help preserve our holdings and achieve a greener footprint.”

The Museum is one of 13 organizations to receive an NEH grant in the competitive Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections category, which provides support for preventive conservation measures to prolong the useful life of collections and help cultural institutions preserve large and diverse holdings of humanities materials for future generations. Specifically, the Museum’s complex HVAC system will be upgraded with a unified building automation system that serves our primary facility. The grant will also be applied to variable frequency drives in air handling units to achieve improved efficiency for our HVAC operation. These updates are necessary to preserve the Museum’s unique and valuable holdings that provide expansive evidence of the development of Chicago.

NEH is one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the United States, promoting excellence in the humanities and conveying the lessons of history to all Americans. The Endowment accomplishes this mission by awarding grants for top-rated proposals examined by panels of independent external reviewers. For more information on NEH, please visit:


The Chicago History Museum is situated on ancestral homelands of the Potawatomi people, who cared for the land until forced out by non-Native settlers. Established in 1856, the Museum is now at 1601 N. Clark Street in Lincoln Park, its third location. As a major museum and research center for Chicago and U.S. history, the Chicago History Museum strives to be a destination for learning, inspiration and civic engagement. Through dynamic exhibitions, tours, publications, special events and programming, the Museum connects people to Chicago’s history and to each other. To share Chicago stories, the Museum collects and preserves millions of artifacts, documents, images and other items that are relevant to the city’s history. The Museum gratefully acknowledges the support of the Chicago Park District on behalf of the people of Chicago. 

Chicago History Museum Sharing Chicago Stories