Press/Journalists
Press Release
November 19, 2001
NHPRC Recommends 38 Grants Totaling Up to $3,359,140

CONTACT:
Ann C. Newhall, Executive Director
National Historical Publications and Records Commission
National Archives and Records Administration
700 Pennsylvania Ave., NW, Room 111
Washington, DC 20408-0001

At its meeting on November 13 and 14, held at the United States Supreme Court, the National Historical Publications and Records Commission recommended that the Archivist of the United States make grants totaling $3,359,140 for 38 projects.

The Commission recommended 8 grants for Founding-Era documentary editing projects totaling $1,330,636; 2 Founding-Era subvention grants totaling $20,000; 9 State Board administrative support grants totaling $129,111; 4 State Board planning, implementation, and regrant proposals and collaborative projects totaling $324,639; 6 grants for electronic records and technologies projects totaling $1,366,415; 5 non-Founding-Era subvention grants totaling $40,167; and 4 grants for education projects totaling $148,172. The complete list of funded projects appears below.

The Commission reinstated its annual fellowships in historical documentary editing and archival administration and, in light of the particular value of these programs at the present time, the hope was expressed that funding shortfalls would never again force their suspension.

In the absence of the NHPRC Chairman, Archivist of the United States John W. Carlin, the meeting was convened by Dr. Alfred Goldberg, the Commission's longest-serving member, who presides if the Archivist is absent. Dr. Goldberg thanked Associate Supreme Court Justice David Souter for arranging for the meeting to be held at the Supreme Court, and announced that a bill appropriating $6.436 million to the Commission for competitive grants in Fiscal Year 2002 had been signed by the President on November 12. He also welcomed Senator Christopher Dodd of Connecticut as the United States Senate's new representative on the Commission, and announced that Congressman Roy D. Blunt of Missouri had been reappointed to represent the U.S. House of Representatives on the Commission. NHPRC Chair John W. Carlin chaired the consideration of grant proposals on November 14.

Commission members received a brief report, prepared by Richard A. Cameron, Director for State Programs, outlining how NHPRC funding had facilitated disaster response in the aftermath of the events of September 11 in New York City by the New York State Archives in cooperation with the Metropolitan Archivists Group of New York City. The report also noted earlier NHPRC-supported disaster recovery efforts in North Carolina (Hurricane Floyd, 1999), Florida, and Virginia.

The Commission approved a funding strategy for Fiscal Year 2002 that aims for a 50-50 split of available funds for competitive grants between documentary editing projects (including the Founding Era Editions, Second-Tier Editions, Subventions, the Editing Institute, and the Historical Documentary Editing Fellowship) and records projects (including State Board grants for planning, implementation, administrative support, and regrants; Electronic Records; Records Access projects endorsed last year and urged to resubmit this year; new Records Access projects; and the Archival Administration Fellowship.). Over the year, this would provide a total of $3.218 million for documentary editing and documentary editing-related projects and $3.218 million for records access and records access-related projects. Such an equal division of available grant funds is aimed at reducing the conflicts inherent in the continuing struggle by the Commission to come to grips with the inevitable budgetary shortfall created by flat funding in the face of increasing need by the NHPRC's constituent groups.

The Commission passed a resolution adopting the following criteria for evaluating second-tier documentary editing projects:

The NHPRC is proud of its long history of support for the creation and publication of documentary editions of the papers of people and events of significance in American history - indeed, it was for this reason that the Commission was created - and renews its dedication to this purpose.

Since the implementation of its current Strategic Plan in October 1998, the Commission has experienced an extraordinary surge in the number and quality of the proposals submitted to the NHPRC and in the dollars requested. Throughout this same period, however, NHPRC's appropriations have not been sufficient to meet the needs of those who turn to the NHPRC for help: the non-Federal communities dedicated to preserving and making accessible the American documentary record.

As a consequence, at the May 2001 meeting of the NHPRC, members passed the following resolution: "That the Commission directs the Commission staff , working with a committee of Commission members and others, as appropriate, to develop a set of criteria to be used for the evaluation of the second-tier documentary editions for review and approval at the next meeting of the Commission."

In complying with the resolution, staff sought the informed views of some members of each of the following groups: the Commission, editors of current documentary editing projects, and historians who have used NHPRC editions.

The resulting statement, presented below, is basically a codification of the criteria already employed by staff when evaluating new and ongoing projects and are addressed in the staff reports submitted to the Commission regarding each documentary editing proposal to be acted upon at Commission meetings. These criteria are outlined within the NHPRC publication, Grant Guidelines: How to Apply for NHPRC Grants; How to Administer NHPRC Grants, which is available free of charge in hard copy to all who request a copy and online on the NHPRC's website, www.archives.gov/nhprc_and_other_grants/. Each criterion listed below is followed, within parentheses, by the evidence utilized by staff.

General Criteria for Evaluating New Second-Tier Documentary Editing Projects

All four of the following criteria must be met by a proposed new documentary editing project in order to receive a positive recommendation from staff:

1. National significance of the subject material to the research public and the potential range of audiences and uses of the planned products. (Proposal narrative, peer review by historians.)

2. The project proposes to make accessible in published form documents never before available, or available in one place, to the research public. (Proposal narrative, peer review by historians.)

3. The project demonstrates a solid financial foundation from its sponsoring institution and others, a base of support that promises to complement NHPRC funding over the life of the project. (Budget section of the proposal, project narrative.)

4. The project promises a reliable return on the investment of NHPRC funds. (Proposal narrative: efficient and effective plan of work.)

General Criteria for Evaluating Ongoing Second-Tier Documentary Editing Projects
The following criteria are utilized by staff in evaluating ongoing documentary editing projects:

1. Positive results in return for the investment of NHPRC funds. (Completion of the work promised in previous grants as described in grant narrative and financial reports, volumes produced on a regular basis, a positive result in grant performance measures; the information provided in the narrative and budget sections of the proposal for the latest grant.)

2. Demonstration of effective project management, i.e., the project meets all or most of the goals of previous grants, makes steady and measurable progress, is adhering to its work plan, demonstrates dedication and ingenuity in overcoming problems, and in recent years has indicated little slippage in its projected completion date. (Completion of work promised in previous grants as described in grant narrative and financial reports, volumes produced on a regular basis, positive result in grant performance measures.)

3. Demonstration of a solid financial foundation from the sponsoring institution and other funders; a base of support that complements NHPRC funding. (Grant financial and narrative reports, budget section of the proposal, past funding history.)

4. Projects within two years of completion or projects threatened with extinction absent Commission funding may be given special consideration.

Recommendations for Second-Tier Editions in Times of Budgetary Shortfall
It has long been the practice of the Commission to maintain steady support of documentary editing projects. The Commission has responded to appropriations increases or decreases with across-the-board actions for ongoing editing projects. However, in times of budgetary shortfall, which the Commission defines as 'times when appropriations are insufficient to allow the NHPRC to fund all projects judged to be worthy of funding,' the Commission may implement the following in order to make the best and most productive use of scarce resources: Staff recommendations for funding ongoing editions are to be presented to the Commission in two or, if conditions warrant, three tiers:

1) Projects recommended to receive flat funding,

2) Projects recommended for some reduction in funding,

3) Projects for whom it is difficult to justify continued funding.

These recommendations are to be arrived at by: careful oversight of the projects, review of reports from previous grants, and review of the level of achievement of agreed-upon performance measures from previous grants.

The Commission agreed to award its Distinguished Service Award at its May 2002 meeting to Dr. John Brademas, President Emeritus of New York University. Dr. Brademas served as President of New York University from 1981 to 1992, and earlier represented Indiana's Third District in the United States House of Representatives for 22 years (1959-1981), the last four as Majority Whip. From 1971 to 1976, he represented the House of Representatives on the NHPRC, providing much guidance and direction.

The following Commission Members were present at the November 13-14 meeting: Chairperson John W. Carlin, Archivist of the United States; Congressman Roy D. Blunt, representing the U.S. House of Representatives; Nicholas C. Burckel, Presidential appointee; Charles T. Cullen, representing the Association for Documentary Editing; Senator Christopher Dodd, representing the U.S. Senate; Mary Maples Dunn, representing the American Historical Association; Fynnette Eaton, representing the Society of American Archivists; Barbara J. Fields, representing the Organization of American Historians; Brent Glass, representing the American Association for State and Local History; Alfred Goldberg, representing the Department of Defense; Margaret P. Grafeld, representing the Department of State; Marvin F. "Bud" Moss, Presidential appointee; Justice David H. Souter, representing the United States Supreme Court; Winston Tabb, representing the Librarian of Congress; and Roy C. Turnbaugh, representing the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators.

Information on NHPRC objectives and activities is available at our Web site. Application materials for all Commission grants, including fellowships, may be requested by telephone, fax, mail, or e-mail:

NHPRC
NARA
700 Pennsylvania Avenue NW, Room 111
Washington, DC 20408-0001

Telephone: (202) 501-5610
FAX: (202) 501-5601
e-mail: nhprc@nara.gov
Web site: http://www.archives.gov/nhprc_and_other_grants/

Founding-Era Documentary Editing Projects

  • Massachusetts Historical Society, Boston, MA: A conditional grant of $140,832 to support the preparation of a comprehensive book edition of The Adams Papers.
  • Yale University, New Haven, CT: A conditional grant of up to $154,000 to assist its work on a comprehensive book edition of The Papers of Benjamin Franklin.
  • Princeton University, Princeton, NJ: A conditional grant of up to $154,731 to support its work on a comprehensive book edition of The Papers of Thomas Jefferson.
  • University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA: A conditional grant of up to $139,200 to continue work on a comprehensive book edition of The Papers of James Madison.
  • University of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA: A conditional grant of up to $143,583 to edit a comprehensive book edition of The Papers of George Washington.
  • The George Washington University, Washington, DC: A conditional grant of up to $187,140 to continue editing The Documentary History of the First Federal Congress, 1789-1791, and an additional conditional grant of up to $35,000, conditional upon the availability of additional Fiscal Year 2002 funds.
  • Board of Regents, University of Wisconsin, Madison, WI: A conditional grant of up to $160,000 to continue editing a selective book edition of The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution.
  • Supreme Court Historical Society, Washington, DC: A conditional grant of up to $216,150 to edit a selective book edition of The Documentary History of the Supreme Court, 1789-1800.

Founding-Era Subventions

  • University Press of Virginia, Charlottesville, VA: A subvention grant of $10,000 for The Papers of George Washington, Presidential Series, Vol. 10.
  • State Historical Society of Wisconsin, Madison, WI: A subvention grant of $10,000 for The Documentary History of the Ratification of the Constitution, Vol. 19.

State Board Administrative Support Projects

  • Alaska Division of Libraries, Archives, and Museums, Juneau, AK: A conditional grant of $19,997 in partial support of the Alaska Board's administrative expenses for two years.
  • American Samoa Government, Pago Pago, AS: A grant of $4,950 in partial support of the American Samoa Board's administrative expenses for one year.
  • Colorado State Historical Records Advisory Board, Denver, CO: A grant of $14,584 in partial support of the board's administrative expenses for two years.
  • Florida Department of State, Division of Library and Information Services, Tallahassee, FL: A grant of $15,400 in partial support of the Florida Board's administrative expenses for two years.
  • Massachusetts State Historical Records Advisory Board, Boston, MA: A grant of $20,000 in partial support of the board's administrative expenses for two years.
  • North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, Raleigh, NC: A grant of $9,185 in partial support of the North Carolina Board's administrative expenses for two years.
  • South Carolina State Historical Records Advisory Board, Columbia, SC: A grant of $19,995 in partial support of the board's administrative expenses for two years.
  • Washington State Historical Records Advisory Board, Olympia, WA: A conditional grant of up to $5,000 in partial support of the board's administrative expenses for one year.
  • Wyoming Department of State Parks and Cultural Resources, Cheyenne, WY: A grant of $20,000 in partial support of the board's administrative expenses for two years.

State Board Planning, Implementation, and Regrant Projects; Collaborative Projects

  • Minnesota Historical Records Advisory Board, St. Paul, MN: A conditional two-year grant of $48,314 to develop a new strategic plan to guide the board over the next five years.
  • New Jersey Historical Records Advisory Board, Trenton, NJ: A conditional two-year grant of $16,999 to establish a statewide program for basic MARC cataloging of the archival collections of small repositories.
  • New Mexico Commission of Public Records, Santa Fe, NM: A two-year grant of $80,290 ($20,000 matching) and an additional conditional grant of up to $79,036 ($52,300 matching) for a Phase II project to implement the board's strategic plan.
  • Massachusetts Historical Records Advisory Board, Boston, MA: A 25-month conditional grant of up to $100,000 ($100,000 matching) for a regrant project to continue to assist local repositories, to increase the accessibility of historical records, to improve the documentation of Massachusetts, to develop networks that can have a long-term impact on records and the historical records community, and to implement the board's strategic plan.

Electronic Records and Technologies Projects

  • The Regents of the University of California: A two-year grant of $160,590 on behalf of the San Diego Supercomputer Center for a project to test the ability of a Records Management Application (RMA) to classify, store, and manage the disposition of electronic records.
  • Minnesota Historical Society, St. Paul, MN: A conditional 14-month grant of $105,400 to examine the NHPRC's Electronic Records Research Agenda and to recommend a revised and newly validated agenda.
  • The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill: A conditional one-year grant of up to $78,605 to study current end user practices in managing e-mail and electronically transmitted documents in selected offices throughout the UNC system.
  • Nevada State Library and Archives, Carson City, NV: A conditional one-year grant of up to $39,487 to assess the need for state laws that address the management and preservation of government electronic records, to draft necessary legislation, to draft a plan for funding a state electronic records program, and to educate stakeholders about the need for such legislation.
  • The Research Foundation of the State University of New York, Albany, NY: A conditional three-year grant of up to $796,951 to build upon the work of the original InterPARES (International Research on Permanent Authentic Records in Electronic Systems) Project through InterPARES 2, which will study new types of non-textual and interactive records produced by digital government, electronic commerce, and the digital arts.
  • The University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC: A conditional 18-month grant of up to $185,382 on behalf of the Model Editions Partnership to create new versions of the current MEP Guidelines, Reference Manual, and document type definitions based upon a new, simplified version of the Standard Generalized Markup Language (SGML) known as the eXtensible Markup Language (XML).

Non-Founding-Era Subventions

  • University of Oklahoma Press, Norman, OK: A subvention grant of $7,167 for Louis D. Brandeis: The Family Letters.
  • Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale, IL: A subvention grant of $3,000 for reprinting The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant, Vol. 7.
  • Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale, IL: A subvention grant of $10,000 for The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant, Vol. 25.
  • Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale, IL: A subvention grant of $10,000 for The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant, Vol. 26.
  • The University of North Carolina Press, Chapel Hill, NC: A subvention grant of $10,000 for The Papers of John Marshall, Vol. 11.

Education Proposals

  • Wisconsin History Foundation, Inc., Madison, WI: A one-year grant of $31,059 to support the 31st Institute for the Editing of Historical Documents.
  • Arizona State Library, Archives, and Public Records, Phoenix, AZ: A one-year grant of $26,613 on behalf of the First Archivists Circle to help fund organizational meetings.
  • Host/Fellow for Fellowship in Archival Administration: A one-year grant of $45,250.
  • Host/Fellow for Fellowship in Historical Documentary Editing: A one-year grant of $45,250.

For additional PRESS information, please contact the National Archives Public Affairs staff at (301) 837-1700 or by e-mail.

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