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HRC 2017 Directory Listings

Preservation Grants for Nonprofits

There are two types of preservation grants available for nonprofit organizations, bricks and mortar and planning grants. Foundations may have one or both grant types and depending on their qualifications, government entities may also apply. Museums and historical societies have additional grant opportunities, directed at education programs and collections. If the museums or historical societies are housed in a historical building, many of these preservation grants will apply also.


Bricks and mortar grants fund rehabilitation projects of historic structures. The building must meet the criteria of being historically significant, such as being listed on the National Register of Historic Places, or be a contributing site in a local historic district. These grants will usually require that all work follow the Secretary of Interior Standards for Rehabilitation, which can be reviewed at: http://www.nps.gov/history/hps/tps/tax/rehabstandards.htm.


Planning grants are more readily available and generally fund the planning, researching and assessing of historic structures and their use. This funding may include creating a master rehabilitation plan for a community building, conducting a study report for a historic district, obtaining professional expertise in specialized fields such as archeology, architecture or engineering, or exploring how a nonprofit can better utilize a historic building through new programs.


Bricks and Mortar Grants

  1. Certified Local Government grants – available for CLG communities, also through the Park Service, and administered by the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office. http://www.nps.gov/history/hps/clg/index.htm
  2. 1772 Foundation grantshttp://www.1772foundation.org/
  3. Consumers Energy Company Contributions Programhttp://www.consumersenergy.com
  4. Americana Foundation –  http://americanafoundation.org/grants.asp
  5. Carls Foundationhttp://www.carlsfdn.org/
  6. Daughters of the American Revolution www.dar.org/grants http://members.dar.org/darnet/forms/SPG-1001.PDF
  7. Questers – Local Preservation and Restoration Grants – http://www.questers1944.org/preservation.html


Planning Grants

  1. MSU database for nonprofits: http://staff.lib.msu.edu/harris23/grants/2sgalpha.htm
  2. The Kresge Foundation: http://www.kresge.org/funding
  3. (J.P). Getty Trust – Architectural Conservation Grants: http://www.getty.edu/grants/conservation/
  4. Local community foundationsalso often provide funding for preservation planning projects of local historic buildings and nonprofit planning activities. http://forgoodforever.org/
  5. Michigan Historic Preservation Network and the National Trust for Historic Preservation Fund offer the Michigan Preservation Fund, which enables preservationists to rescue historic sites, buildings, structures and districts, structures and districts in jeopardy and empower local communities to plan and utilize their historic resources. For more information contact: www.mhpn.org
  6. National Trust for Historic Preservation has additional grants and other financial incentives, which can be reviewed on the attached documents, or at: www.preservationnation.orgclick on “Find Funding.”
  7. Plum Creek Foundation The Plum Creek Foundation strives to improve the quality of life in the U.S. communities that Plum Creek serves through the support of community-based nonprofit organizations. (A list of eligible states/counties is available on the company’s website.) Grants of $500 to $10,000 are provided in the following categories: human service organizations that serve troubled youth, needy individuals, senior citizens, victims of abuse, etc.; hospital and medical programs; cultural organizations; environmental education and conservation programs; civic service organizations; youth organizations; and educational institutions. http://www.plumcreek.com/CommunityInvolvement/GrantApplication/tabid/161/Default.aspx
  8. Orton Family Grants – The Orton Family Foundation helps small cities and towns harness the inherent ability of citizens to imagine and achieve a better future for themselves and their community. www.orton.org

Grants for historical societies and museums

These grants are typically awarded to historical organizations and museums that enhance their communities with historical education programs, museum collections or the preservation of local historical sites.


  1. The 1772 Foundation http://www.1772foundation.org/
  2. American Association of Museums’ Museum Assessment Program  Contact: Jill Connors-Joyner, Assistant Director, MAP at: map@aam-us.org.
  3. Museums for America – Contact: Steven Schwartzman, email: sshwarzman@imls.gov or Sandra Narva, email: snarva@imls.gov.
  4. Promotion of the Humanities – Challenge grants. Contact: challenge@neh.gov (202-606-8309)
  5. National Endowment for the Humanities: Americas Historical and Cultural Organizations: Implementations. http://www.neh.gov/grants/
  6. Heritage Preservation – National Institute for Conservation – Provides Conservation Assessment grants for museum’s collection, environmental conditions, and site.




  1. Comerica Charitable Foundation www.comerica.com
  2. Oleson Foundation http://www.olesonfoundation.org/ Contact: Kathy Huschke, Executive Director at kathy@olesonfoundation.org P.O. Box 904 Traverse City, MI. 49685-0904.
  3. Consumers Energy Company Contributions Program –  www.consumersenergy.com
  4. The Les and Anne Biederman Foundation – (primarily for northern Michigan organizations) Contact: P.O. Box 564 Traverse City, MI.  48685-0564.
  5. The Taubman Endowment for the Arts – Contact: Fred Henshaw  200 E. Long Lake Rd. P.O. Box 200 Bloomfield Hills, MI.  48304-0200.
  6. Hildreth Foundation, Inc. – Contact: Mark Merkle, V.P.  41 S. High St. Columbus, Ohio 43215-3406.
  7.  Wege Foundation – Contact: Ellen Satterlee, P.O. Box 6288 Grand Rapids, MI. 49516-6388.
  8. MSU Database for museum grants – http://staff.lib.msu.edu/harris23/grants/2museums.htm

Other Grants

  1. MDOT Grants – The Transportation Alternatives Program (TAP) is a competitive grant program that funds projects such as nonmotorized paths, streetscapes, and historic preservation of transportation facilities that enhance Michigan’s intermodal transportation system and provide safe alternative transportation options. http://www.michigan.gov/mdot/0,1607,7-151-9621_17216_18231—,00.html
  2. USDA – For small, rural communities – Community Facilities program, Business programs, Renewable Energy Programs. Michigan USDA programs, and applications: http://www.rurdev.usda.gov/mi/default.htm
  3. State Historic Preservation Office Lighthouse Assistance Program – http://www.michigan.gov/mshda/0,4641,7-141-54317_19320_62014—,00.html
  4. Maritime Grants – see separate list.
  5. Tourism Cares Grants http://www.tourismcares.org/grants


Stay connected through state networks

To stay in touch with new grant opportunities, become a member of the Michigan Historic Preservation Network at: www.mhpn.org and receive regular updates through newsletters and emails. In addition, if you are a preservation professional, historic property owner, developer, planner, historic district commissioner, student or preservation enthusiast consider enlisting on the State Historic Preservation Office statewide listserv,

MISHPO-L. Join by visiting the SHPO website at www.michigan.gov/shpo and complete the online form. This is a great opportunity to network with fellow preservationists around the state.


Michigan Historic Preservation Network and National Trust for Historic Preservation

Michigan Historic Preservation Network is the statewide preservation organization for Michigan. It is a nonprofit, membership MHPN partners with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the country’s largest private, nonprofit preservation organization. As partners, both organizations are dedicated to protecting the irreplaceable and providing leadership, education, advocacy and resources to save Michigan’s diverse historic places and revitalize communities. For more information: www.mhpn.org and www.preservationnation.org