The National Endowment for the Humanities Awards $785,907 to Three State Councils for Public Humanities Programs
Councils awarded funds: Alabama Humanities Foundation, Indiana Humanities, and Michigan Humanities Council

Arlington VA – On August 2, 2017, the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) announced awards of more than $39.3 million for 245 humanities projects nationwide that will support local cultural organizations and individual scholars. Of that $39.3 million, $785,907 in grants were awarded to three state humanities councils: Alabama Humanities Foundation, Indiana Humanities, and Michigan Humanities Council.

“NEH funding is crucial for state humanities councils to continue serving their constituents, expand popular programs, and explore new programming,” said Esther Mackintosh, president, Federation of State Humanities Councils. “These recently funded programs run the gamut of topics – from innovative programming around Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein to professional development for state teachers centered on the civil rights movement to a series of programs exploring the historical, cultural, and environmental impact of water. The awards offer further evidence that state humanities councils cultivate high-quality programming centered around the interests of and current issues facing their communities.  We continue to be thankful to the NEH for their support and belief in the value and impact of council programs.”

Following are brief descriptions of the three state humanities council programs awarded funds on August 2, 2017:


Martha Bouyer’s “Stony the Road we Trod…: Exploring Alabama’s Civil Rights Legacy” 2018 Summer Institute for teachers, supported by the Alabama Humanities Foundation, has received $185,907 from NEH in this most recent round of grant awards. This three-week summer residential workshop can host up to 30 teachers and will explore the history and legacy of the civil rights movement in Alabama.


The NEH awarded Indiana Humanities $300,000 for a series of programs centered on Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein, which turns 200 in 2018. Programs will include a Frankenfest at the Indiana Medical History Museum (September 30, 2017), a Frankenstein read-a-thon and corresponding grants for up to 10 other organizations interested in hosting their own, a weekend retreat for librarians, educators, and book lovers that dives deep into Shelley’s Frankenstein (March 23-24, 2018), a teen-focused Sci-Fi and Horror Writers Festival (Fall 2018), Frankenstein-related programming at thirteen colleges and universities across the state, a Frankenstein-themed podcast, a gaming workshop hosted by gaming expert Anastasia Salter entitled “Making (and Playing) Monsters” (February 9, 2018), and more. To learn about the array of Frankenstein programming, partners and organizations involved, and event details check out Indiana Humanities’ announcement.


The NEH has also awarded the Michigan Humanities Council $300,000 to support a series of programs across the state entitled “Third Coast Conversations: Dialogues about Water,” which address the historical, cultural, and environmental impact of water.


The state humanities councils are independent, nonpartisan, nonprofit organizations supporting grassroots humanities programs and community-based activities. Humanities councils were created by Congress in the early 1970s and receive an annual congressional appropriation through the National Endowment for the Humanities, which most councils supplement with state and private funding.


The Federation of State Humanities Councils, founded in 1977 as the membership association of state and territorial councils, provides support for the councils and strives to create greater awareness of the humanities in public and private life. For more information about the Federation of State Humanities Councils, please visit: