Grants Award Program for 2019 Totals $86,155
Dr. Patrick T. Conley, President of the Heritage Harbor Foundation and Russell DeSimone, the Foundation’s Grants Coordinator, announced that the Foundation has awarded $86,155 in grant money for 2019 to twelve local organizations. The purpose of the grants is to support projects aimed at increasing the awareness of Rhode Island adults and school-age students of their historical, ethnic, and cultural heritage.
- The Barrington Preservation Society was awarded $7,455 for the restoration of a Barrington militia flag from the Dorr Rebellion of 1842 and an exhibit relating to the town’s military history.
- Southeast New England Film, Music and Arts Festival was awarded $7,500 towards the post-production cost of the documentary film Slatersville: America’s First Mill Village by filmmaker Christian de Rezendes.
- The Steamship Historical Society of America was awarded $5,000 towards the development and promotion of the web-based game “Crossing on the Fabre Line,” about the Marseilles-based passenger line that brought 84,000 immigrants to the Port of Providence from 1911 to 1934.
- Providence College was awarded $6,700 for the development and addition of “Thomas Wilson Dorr and the Politics of Gender in Antebellum America” to the college’s Dorr Rebellion Project website. It will highlight the role of women in this political uprising.
- Rhode Island Middle Passage Medallions received a $5,000 grant in support of the development of the Medallion project that deals with Rhode Island’s role in the African slave trade and sites relating to the existence of slavery in Rhode Island.
- The Blackstone Valley Tourism Council received a grant of $10,000 for the outfitting of the Blackstone River Exploration Center in order to inform visitors of the historic and ethnic heritage of the Blackstone Valley.
- Linden Place was awarded $11,000 for its sponsorship of the development and exhibition of “The Women of the East Bay” highlighting prominent women from this area. The exhibit coincides with the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the Nineteenth Amendment granting the vote to women.
- The Providence Preservation Society was awarded $10,000 for interpretive panel designs and video for the 1769 Old Brick School House on Meeting Street to create a visitors’ information center.
- *The Rhode Island Aviation Hall of Fame received $5,000 for the generation of public displays relating to the development of military aviation in Rhode Island from 1910-1930.
- *The Rhode Island Historical Society received a grant of $7,000 for the establishment of a permanent digital repository of their historical collections to make their holdings more accessible to researchers.
- Westerly Armory Restoration, Inc. was awarded $3,500 for the update and printing of a booklet by Dr. Roberta Mudge Humble on the historic armories of Rhode Island.
- The Portsmouth Historical Society received a grant of $8,000 for the restoration of interpretive signage at Lehigh Hill and Patriot Park relating to the Battle of Rhode Island as well as new signage at the Melville Depot, site of a Civil War hospital and Leigh Hill coal mines worked by early Irish immigrants.
In its first three years of making selective and competitive awards, the Rhode Island Foundation has granted more than $400,000 to Rhode Island’s historical and cultural organizations. For 2020 the Foundation will continue to make selective awards only, including the publication of books by its affiliate, the Rhode Island Publications Society, biographical research by the Rhode Island Heritage Hall of Fame, and the establishment of a Museum of South Providence History in St. Michael’s Church, but will take a one-year hiatus from making competitive awards because of the size and expense of these internal projects.
Inquiries for more information about the Foundation’s grant program should be addressed to
The Heritage Harbor Foundation
1445 Wampanoag Trail Suite #201
Attention: Russell J. DeSimone, Grants Committee Chairman