Appalshop Archive Receives NEH Challenge Grant

Written by appalarchive

We are excited to announce that Appalshop is the recipient a $100,000 Humanities Access Challenge grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. These NEH funds with matching contributions will enable Appalshop Archive to enhance its public programming initiatives and improve access to its collections. In anticipation of the organization’s forthcoming 50th anniversary, these activities will celebrate Appalshop’s legacy while broadening and deepening its unique role as a regional arts, culture, and community development hub in Appalachia. 

Appalshop is one of two organizations in Kentucky and 34 nationwide to receive Humanities Access grants, which are intended to help enhance and support existing cultural initiatives for youth, communities of color, and economically disadvantaged populations.  

“Humanities Access grants support innovative projects that will help ensure that high-quality cultural programming is available to everyone,” said NEH Chairman William D. Adams. “Americans of every age, race, and economic status should be able to access the incredible opportunities that the humanities provide.”


Bill Goodman, Executive Director of Kentucky Humanities Council, commented, “The Kentucky Humanities Council joins citizens from all across the Commonwealth in congratulating Appalshop on receiving an NEH Humanities Access Grant. Appalshop and the KHC have a rich history of telling Kentucky stories and enhancing the literature, arts and culture of Appalachia.” 


Among planned activities supported by the award will be improved access to Appalshop’s audiovisual and photographic collections via digitization and a more robust web presence; further efforts to record, contextualize, and better understand the region’s cultural heritage and social history; and the development of partnerships between humanities scholars, community members, and Appalshop staff towards the creation of a series of public events fostering civic engagement, reflection, and inquiry during the period of June 2018 until September 2021.

Currently underway is a fundraising campaign through April 2018 to secure non-federal matching funds that will release the NEH federal funds. If interested in supporting Appalshop Archive’s project by making a donation, to be matched 1:1 by NEH, please contact Project Director Caroline Rubens: ([email protected] or call 606-633-0108).


Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at:



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