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July 12, 2022


NJCH Builds Capacity and Community with $402,514 in New Grant Awards

(Camden, NJ) – The New Jersey Council for the Humanities (NJCH) is pleased to announce that we have awarded $402,514 in grant funding to 33 organizations across the state for Spring 2022.

These awards cap off a banner grant cycle which saw the largest-ever response to an NJCH call for applications, with 83 Letters of Intent submitted earlier this year. The high demand for funding reflects both the robust activity of the cultural sector and the need for ongoing support in that sector, as we emerge from the COVID-related challenges of the last few years.

The grantees’ projects reflect the creativity, excellence, and lifelong learning that public humanities programming contributes to New Jersey’s cultural and civic life. NJCH’s awards include Incubation Grants, which help organizations plan, research, develop, and prototype public humanities projects and events; Action Grants, which help organizations implement a wide array of humanities-based projects, including public programs, exhibitions, installations, tours, and discussion groups; and Seed Funding, a brand-new award type that recognizes promising applicants from the Action and Incubation award pools and supports them in building greater capacity to do high-impact public humanities projects. 

“From telling underrepresented stories to exploring new modes of audience engagement as we emerge from the pandemic, the new grantees’ projects speak to the astonishing breadth and depth of public humanities work in the state,” said NJCH Executive Director Carin Berkowitz. “NJCH’s grantmaking not only highlights those who are already doing exemplary work in the field, but also supports those organizations and communities that traditionally have less access to the public humanities. This approach ensures that New Jersey’s cultural sector will continue to thrive—now and well into the future.”

For 50 years, NJCH has explored, cultivated, and championed the public humanities. We are dedicated to fostering appreciation for the field across New Jersey’s diverse community, in every district in the state. To learn more about upcoming grant opportunities and NJCH’s other exciting work in New Jersey, visit

Incubation grants were awarded to:

Alice Paul Institute, Mt. Laurel Township ($15,000), for additional research and understanding needed to update a permanent exhibit on suffragist and New Jersey native Alice Paul with more inclusive narratives.

Barnegat Bay Decoy and Baymen’s Museum, Tuckerton ($15,000), to lay the framework for an oral history of Tuckerton Seaport that captures the story of its birth, rebirth, and unconventional approach.

Macculloch Hall Historical Museum, Morristown ($15,000), to develop a public historyinfused public high school curriculum for Thomas Nast’s caricaturamas “The Last Ditch” and “The Palace of Tears.”

Morven Museum and Garden, Princeton ($7,500), for a project that researches the history and genealogy of the people enslaved at Morven and lays groundwork to share these stories with the public.

Museum of Early Trades and Crafts, Madison ($12,150), to create a museum civics literacy program that introduces students to core democratic principles and explores democratic ideals, values, and the role of citizenship.

New Jersey Orators, Bridgewater Township ($15,000), to bring workshops on the art of public speaking, reading and media arts literacy, civic engagement and college readiness, and life skills to youth in more school districts around New Jersey.

Ocean City Arts Center, Ocean City ($10,500), to support research and planning for the development of a listening tour and performance piece on the cultural and demographic changes in and around the South Jersey Shore in Atlantic, Cape May, and Cumberland Counties.

Redhawk Native American Arts Council, South Amboy ($6,390), to support the planning stages of two Indigenous solstice celebrations, in collaboration with leaders of the Ramapough Lunnape and the Nanticoke Leni Lenape Nations in New Jersey and Indigenous student groups from Rutgers University and Ramapo College.

Trenton Historical Society, Trenton ($14,800), to develop and test a searchable electronic database for employee records from the John A. Roebling’s Sons Company, a producer of wire cable that employed thousands of Eastern and Southern European immigrants and African Americans at sites in Trenton and Roebling in the twentieth century.

Action grants were awarded to:

Clinton Hill Community Action, Newark ($20,000), for a multi-year public history project that will create a collaborative history of Clinton Hill in multiple accessible formats.

Historic Cold Spring Village, Cape May ($3,814), to support an art history-themed free hybrid speaker series held at the Cold Spring Brewery during the winter of 2022-2023.

Hoboken Historical Museum, Hoboken ($20,000), to support “The Hoboken Fires: A History of Gentrification & Arson for Profit,” a partnership with the artist Christopher Lopez that uses community engagement, social justice, and digital practice to revisit Hoboken’s history of the 1970s-80s.

Luna Stage Company, West Orange ($10,000), to support the design and implementation of humanities-based materials that complement creative productions about Underground Railroad Safe Houses and Freedom Routes in Essex County.

Mighty Writers, Camden ($20,000), for a series of activism workshops to teach middle and high school students the crucial power of writing and critical thinking skills to broaden the understanding of themselves, their communities, and their natural and social surroundings.

Montclair Art Museum, Montclair ($16,500), for a performance series to complement “My Home to Yours,” an immersive film and sound installation that centers local and regional Indigenous perspectives on the meaning of home.

New City Kids, Jersey City ($20,000), for professional development activities and workshops that integrate culturally rich humanities work into programming for teens.

New Jersey State Museum Foundation, Trenton ($15,732), to support the exhibition “History Beneath Your Feet: Archaeology in the Capital City,” which will explore the social, cultural, and environmental evolution of Trenton through archaeological artifacts.

The Petey Greene Program, Princeton ($20,000), to build upon its successful pilot of a humanities-based college bridge program for incarcerated and reentering students and expand the program to additional facilities.

Regional Plan Association, Newark ($18,000), to implement a centennial series of public engagement events that will celebrate park and open space initiatives at the Meadowlands, Nat Turner Park in Newark, and Paterson Great Falls.

Roebling Main Gate Museum, Roebling ($18,000), to create an immersive, learning-focused audio walking tour for an upcoming museum exhibit.

Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, Skillman ($20,000), to create a series of youth historical fiction books that will provide a unique firsthand account of life through the lens of African American children who grew up in the Sourland Mountain region of central New Jersey.

Summit Interfaith Council Anti-Racism Committee, Summit ($13,203), for a presentation and book discussions that use both fiction and non-fiction by authors of color to educate New Jerseyans on the economic, societal, and personal costs of racism.

Truehart Productions, Newark ($19,575), to produce a second 30-minute episode of the documentary series “The Price of Silence: The Forgotten Story of New Jersey’s Enslaved People.”

Vietnamese Boat People, Montclair ($20,000), to build out the next phase of a collaborative digital map of stories from the Vietnamese diaspora with enhanced functionality and recruitment/ interactive workshops for users.

Seed grants were awarded to:

Bloomfield College, Bloomfield ($5,000), to advance the Stories of Newark Oral History Project by focusing the work of this grassroots digital archive upon the theme of social mobility for the upcoming year.

Enslaved African Memorial Committee, Englewood ($5,000), to continue work that enlightens the public about the history of slavery in NJ and presents new findings and programming about

recently discovered burial sites located in New Jersey towns, including New Milford, Bergenfield, and Jersey City.

The Jewish Community Center of Somerset, Hunterdon and Warren Counties, Inc, Bridgewater ($2,000), for free Holocaust education workshops that use creative and artistic mediums to teach students how to confront hatred and anti-Semitism and promote human kindness and dignity.

Jewish Historical Society of North Jersey, Fair Lawn ($2,500), to develop a multifaceted interfaith initiative focused on the history of Jewish/African American relations in Passaic, Bergen, and Hudson Counties, from the Civil Rights period and beyond.

Merchants and Drovers Tavern Museum, Rahway ($5,000), to support the design and installation of a new permanent exhibit that interprets the almost-40 years during which the building served as a Girl Scout headquarters.

NJ YMCA State Alliance, Trenton ($5,000), to expand a statewide storytelling project on the impact of COVID-19 by documenting and digitally archiving oral histories about the vaccine.

Renaissance Newark Foundation, Newark ($5,000), to create a companion electronic curriculum guide for the critically acclaimed documentary film “Rust” by Marylou & Jerome Bongiorno.

  1. Thomas Fortune Foundation, Red Bank ($3,250), to create a permanent exhibit highlighting journalist and publisher T. Thomas Fortune’s leading role in the Black Press in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries.

Ukrainian History and Education Center, Somerset ($3,600), to support an exhibition on Ukrainian and Ukrainian American responses to the Holodomor genocide, an artificial famine perpetrated against Ukrainians in the Soviet Union in the 1930s.