Four women have a conversation in front of a museum display case.

Our Utah Collections Preservation Program Receives NEH Funding

We’re pleased to share that, in a competitive process, Utah Arts & Museums’ Utah Collections Preservation (UCP) program has received funding from the National Endowment for the Humanities’ Preservation and Access Education and Training grant program. Our UCP program will receive $350,000 over three years, from March 2024 through February 2027. This is our agency’s second consecutive award for this program. Utah Arts & Museums administers the UCP program with our partners, Utah Humanities and Utah Historical Society, in a partnership known as Utah Field Services.

The award will provide funding and support for three additional participant members of the Collections Preservation Team. The current team cohort includes nine individuals from small museums across Utah, from Kanab to Logan, who have completed two years of training and mentored projects with Utah Field Services. Utah Field Services will continue offering its UCP workshops and webinars in 2024 along the Wasatch Front, in 2025 in southwestern Utah, and in 2026 in central Utah and the west desert. 

New to this grant is the addition of preservation workshops and resources for Utah Arts & Museums’ School District Collection program and community groups working with the Peoples of Utah Revisited project at Utah Historical Society. These workshops will focus on material types commonly found in family or community collections, such as papers, textiles, and photographs. The grant will also enable our agency to provide mentoring in support of our small museum project grants, creating an opportunity for more intensive, assisted collections preservation work in smaller collections across the state. 

In the past six months, the UCP project has brought in-person workshops and webinars to museum professionals and collections stewards across Utah. Topics have included safeguards for collections during earthquakes, emergency planning and preparedness for museums, and security considerations for museum exhibits and storage. 

In 2024, UCP workshop and webinar attendees can look forward to learning more about topics from collections digitization and the preservation of outdated media, to building boxes for storage and mounts for displaying Utah’s treasures. 

Photo: Utah Field Services consulting for the Utah Collections Preservation Program at the Paradise Daughters of Utah Pioneers Museum in Paradise, Utah. From left to right: Courtney Cochley, Sharon Johnson, Ann Norman, and Marie Desrochers.