Trenton, NJ - Advancing its ongoing commitment to ensuring a stable and healthy cultural industry, the New Jersey Cultural Trust Board approved a total of $798,395 in grants supporting capital projects at 21 nonprofit cultural organizations during an open public meeting held virtually on December 15, 2023. With the FY 2024 grant awards, the Cultural Trust has now awarded over $10.4 million in funding for historic preservation and financial stabilization projects across New Jersey to date.
The Fiscal Year 2024 Capital Historic Preservation grants were recommended to the Cultural Trust Board by the New Jersey Historic Trust. The nearly $800,000 in awards represents the largest total dollar amount the Board has approved in grant awards in a single fiscal year since 2011.
“These grants are investments in the sustainability and longevity of sites significant to our state’s rich and diverse history,” said Lieutenant Governor Tahesha Way, who oversees the Cultural Trust in her capacity as Secretary of State. “New Jersey’s historic places are essential to our state’s identity and culture, and the Cultural Trust’s Capital Historic Preservation program helps safeguard them for future generations.”
The Capital Historic Preservation program supports historic preservation projects at sites listed on the New Jersey and/or National Register of Historic Places, including stabilization, repair, restoration, adaptive reuse, and accessibility improvements. All project proposals must be in conformance with the Secretary of the Interior’s Standards for the Treatment of Historic Properties.
The maximum award amount for Fiscal Year 2024 grants was $40,000 — a 60 percent increase over the maximum award amount in Fiscal Year 2018, when the Capital Historic Preservation grant program was most recently offered. At the Cultural Trust Board meeting authorizing the Fiscal Year 2024 grant round, Board members specifically approved this increase in response to inflation and the rising costs of materials and labor.
“The projects that come before the Cultural Trust are critical to the operations and missions of these historic sites and cultural organizations, and they’re only getting more expensive,” said Cultural Trust Board Chair Bette Daniele. “It’s important to the Board that the Capital Historic Preservation program takes into account the on-the-ground realities facing the nonprofit organizations stewarding New Jersey’s historic places.”
The Fiscal Year 2024 awardees include arts and history organizations from 12 counties, with projects ranging from accessibility improvements and HVAC system upgrades to the stabilization and restoration of historically significant features including plasterwork and stained glass windows.
Pursuant to the Cultural Trust Act, applications to the Cultural Trust’s annual grant programs undergo an independent third-party peer review process consisting of qualified individuals employing uniform evaluation criteria. Awards are recommended to the Cultural Trust Board in alternating years by the New Jersey State Council on the Arts, New Jersey Historical Commission, and the New Jersey Historic Trust.
Unique among the other grant programs within the Department of State, Cultural Trust grants are made from interest income generated by the Cultural Trust’s permanent investment fund, rather than from a direct annual budgetary appropriation.
High interest rates, increased appropriations to the principal of the Trust’s permanent fund, and diligent stewardship of the fund resulted in historically high interest income for the most recent fiscal year, which directly increased the Trust’s capacity for awards in the FY 2024 Capital Historic Preservation Grant Program.
The FY 2024 Capital Historic Preservation grant awards, as recommended by the New Jersey Historic Trust, are as follows:
|Camden County Historical Society
|Home Port Alliance for the USS New Jersey Inc.
|USS New Jersey (BB-62)
|Historic Cold Spring Village
|Historic Cold Spring Village Historic District
|Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts & Humanities (Cape May MAC)
|Emlen Physick Estate
|Naval Air Station Wildwood Aviation Museum
|Hangar No. 1
|Millville Army Airfield Museum
|Base Headquarters, Millville Army Airfield Historic District
|Montclair Historical Society
|Nathaniel Crane House and Clark House
|Gloucester County Historical Society
|Save Ellis Island, Inc.
|Statue of Liberty National Monument, Ellis Island and Liberty Island
|The 1759 Vought House, Inc.
|Christoffel Vought Homestead
|Delaware River Mill Society
|Hunterdon Land Trust
|Historic Morven, Inc.
|Old Barracks Museum
|Friends of Millstone Township Historic Registered Properties
|Clarksburg Methodist Episcopal Church
|InfoAge Science History Center
|Camp Evans National Historic Landmark
|South Street Theatre/The Community Theatre (Mayo Performing Arts Center)
|Community Theatre, Morristown Historic District
|American Labor Museum/Botto House National Landmark
|Liberty Hall Museum
|Liberty Hall Museum
|Merchants and Drovers Tavern Museum Association
|Merchants and Drovers Tavern
The New Jersey Cultural Trust, a division of the New Jersey Department of State, was created in July 2000 as a public/private partnership to help ensure a stable and healthy nonprofit cultural industry in New Jersey that is sustainable even in the toughest of economic times. The Trust provides grants to support capital projects, endowments and institutional and financial stabilization of arts, history and humanities organizations in New Jersey. Funding for the grants comes from interest earned on the Cultural Trust Fund, which is a permanent investment fund. To learn more about the Trust, please visit our website at nj.gov/state/culturaltrust.