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Press Release

March 4, 2021

Contact: Nicole Harvey
Grants Administrator, Oklahoma Historical Society
Office: 405-522-5202

Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma and Preservation Oklahoma Inc. Awarded Oklahoma Heritage Preservation Grants

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma Historical Society is proud to announce that the Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma and Preservation Oklahoma Inc. have been awarded grants through the Oklahoma Heritage Preservation Grant Program.

"Congratulations to Preservation Oklahoma Inc. and the Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma on being awarded the Oklahoma Heritage Preservation Grant," said Sen. Kay Floyd, Oklahoma City. "These grant funds will go a long way in creating more accessibility to Oklahoma's rich history."

The Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma has been awarded $20,000 that will fund the digitization of a portion of the vast archival collection known as the Church Collection. The Church Collection is one of the more comprehensive historical collections within the archive. It encompasses over 150 individual church document collections. The digitization project will allow the histories of over 50 communities and 150 churches to be accessed. This seminal digitization project has never been proposed nor advanced within Oklahoma, and will offer access to vital historic documents.

"We are thrilled to have been selected for this incredible grant," said Bishop Poulson Reed of the Episcopal Diocese of Oklahoma. "The history of the Episcopal Church in Oklahoma dates back to before statehood. Our history is the state's history. This grant will allow us to digitize our archive and make our historical documents accessible to the public through modern technology."

Preservation Oklahoma Inc. has been awarded $9,068 that will fund a project geared toward enhancing the visitor experience and transitioning toward a self-guided tour option. This will include an informational pamphlet, carpet runners in sections of the house to allow guests to enter areas previously off limits due to original carpets, stanchions and ropes that will help direct the flow of tours and protect fragile objects and the addition of an information stand in each room of the house with more historical interpretation of the rooms.

"We're thrilled to receive the Oklahoma Heritage Preservation Grant for 2021," said Chantry Banks, Preservation Oklahoma Inc. executive director. "Funds will allow for an improved visitor experience at the Henry and Anna Overholser Mansion, including new information signs and greater access to the mansion's second floor. We're grateful to OHS for providing this grant and are looking forward to having our guests experience the Overholser in new and exciting ways!"

A total of just over $460,000 in grant funds will be distributed, with projects ranging from collections care and exhibit development to strategic planning and educational programming. "This is only the second year for this grant program. As organizations wrap up their grant projects from last year and as we see the quality of the applications that came in for this grant cycle, it is clear that there is a strong need for this type of grant program," said Nicole Harvey, OHS grants administrator.

The Oklahoma Heritage Preservation Grant Program is a grants-in-aid program offered by the Oklahoma Historical Society with a goal of encouraging the collection, preservation and sharing of Oklahoma history at the grassroots level in all parts of the state. Open to tribal and municipal governments and not-for-profit historical organizations located in Oklahoma and registered with the Oklahoma secretary of state, this grants program offers funding ranging from $1,000 to $20,000 for projects focused on collections, exhibits and programming. Applications for this annual program open in the fall and award announcements are made in January. For more information visit www.okhistory.org/grants.

The mission of the Oklahoma Historical Society is to collect, preserve and share the history and culture of the state of Oklahoma and its people. Founded in 1893 by members of the Territorial Press Association, the OHS maintains museums, historic sites and affiliates across the state. Through its research archives, exhibits, educational programs and publications the OHS chronicles the rich history of Oklahoma. For more information about the OHS, please visit www.okhistory.org.


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