CONGRESSMAN JIM HIMES

Representing the 4th District of Connecticut

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Rep. Himes Announces $362,940 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to Southwest Connecticut Museums

September 16, 2020
Press Release

Norwalk, CT – Today, Congressman Jim Himes (CT-04) announced that three museums in Southwest Connecticut will receive a total of $362,940 from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.   

“The museums and libraries in Southwest Connecticut are the hubs of our neighborhoods,” said Congressman Jim Himes. “We value education, civic engagement, and accessible public spaces. The IMLS grant recipients are doing important work to preserve our history, spark curiosity, and encourage self-reflection and dialogue among students, families, and community members. I’m proud we were able to help secure these grants.” 

Stepping Stones Museum for Children 

Museums for America Program 

$179,951 

Greenwich Historical Society 

Museums for America Program 

$173,590 

Housatonic Museum of Art, Housatonic Community College

Inspire! Grants for Small Museums 

$9,399 

 

 

Stepping Stones Museum for Children will use the grant to create an exhibition titled We (Heart) America! The exhibit will explore everyday acts of democracy and citizenship through carefully developed storylines drawing from the diversity of our country’s perspectives, people, places and innovations. The exhibit looks to enable our youngest community members to learn from, and about, the diversity of the American experience and catalyze a greater appreciation for and knowledge about civic engagement and how everyone can make positive changes in their community. 

“Stepping Stones Museum for Children is grateful for the support of the Institute of Museum and Library Services,” said Rhonda Kiest, President and CEO of the award-winning, Norwalk-based children’s museum. “This Museums for America Lifelong Learning grant will help the museum and its statewide coalition of partners including the Connecticut State Department of Education; Red, White & Blue Schools Program; Everyday Democracy; Civics First, Norwalk Community College and others to complete the planning process for a new immersive, exhibit experience tentatively called ‘We (Heart) America!’  This exhibit will allow children to explore everyday acts of democracy, civic engagement, and citizenship through carefully-developed storylines that draw from the diversity of our state and country’s perspectives, people, places and innovations. The exhibit will also serve as a statewide platform to enable our youngest community members to learn from, and about, the diversity of the American experience and gain knowledge about and a greater appreciation for civic engagement and how everyone can make positive changes in their community,” said Kiest. 

Greenwich Historical Society will use the grant to increase public access to and knowledge of Greenwich history through ongoing stewardship of its archival collections. This project will support a new archivist to process and create detailed online aids for 49 archival collections and a digitization specialist to digitize and describe 22,200 images and publish them online in the Connecticut Digital Archives.   

“Greenwich Historical Society’s mission is to preserve and interpret Greenwich history to strengthen the community’s connection to our past, to each other and to our future,” said Christopher Shields, Curator of Library and Archives. “This grant will allow us to make many important collections broadly visible and accessible to the public for the first time. The digitization of thousands of historical photographs will provide unprecedented insight into the people and places of Greenwich. There are so many new facts and stories yet to be discovered in these historic materials. We are thrilled at the opportunity to promote these efforts by making these unique materials easier to find and explore.” 

Finally, the Housatonic Museum of Art will use the grant to implement a collections stewardship project that will increase storage space for acquisitions and ensure proper care and preservation of its collections, including installing new modular units in a reconfigured storage area for framed works on paper. 

“Proper collections care is vital to the protection of our current holdings and future acquisitions,” said Robbin Zella, Director of the Housatonic Museum of Art. “We are grateful to IMLS for this essential support.” 

According to the Institute of Museum and Library Services, their mission is to advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development. Click here to learn more.  

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