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Funded Projects Query Form
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Grant number like: PG-266734-19

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Chester County Historical Society (West Chester, PA 19380-2658)
Heather Hansen (Project Director: January 2019 to August 2021)
Ellen Endslow (Project Director: August 2021 to present)

Preservation Assistance Grants
Preservation and Access

[Grant products]

$8,615 (approved)
$8,615 (awarded)

Grant period:
9/1/2019 – 3/31/2021

Expansion and Improvement of Works of Art on Paper Storage

The purchase of storage furniture for artworks held by the Chester County Historical Society (CCHS). Materials range from high-style decorative arts to items of everyday life and include 8,000 paper toys and dolls, 1,100 drawings, 650 prints, 315 silhouettes, and 281 watercolor paintings spanning the eighteenth to twentieth centuries. These collections document life in one of the nation’s earliest areas of settlement. They are used by scholars, local historians, genealogists, attorneys, property researchers, reporters, local officials, and students from the Cooperstown Museum Studies program, who regularly visit CCHS for an introduction to collections care and museum work. Curatorial research supports collections documentation and provides material for interpretive exhibits, magazine and journal articles, and lectures.

Chester County Historical Society (CCHS) requests a Preservation Assistance Grant from NEH to purchase new storage furniture for framed works of art and works of art on paper in order to expand and improve their storage conditions, an institutional strategic priority. These additional shelves, flat file, and vertical storage units will improve storage conditions for over 10,000 artifacts that reflect local people and their lifestyles, belief systems, and communities. Both primitive and fine art document the changes over two hundred years in the ways that childhood, education, and recreation are perceived and enacted locally and within national trends. Local artists’ renderings of the natural and built landscapes of Chester County add a significant visual layer to interpreting not only modes of expression but the ideas of what was and is important in the community. The project will make these objects more accessible and identify areas lacking in representation for future collecting.