Connecting to Collections

In February, 2009, the State Library of Ohio, in partnership with the Ohio Historical Society, was awarded an Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) Connecting to Collections Planning Grant. Entitled “Ohio Heritage Partnership: A Statewide Initiative,” this ongoing project addresses the lack of care and preservation of Ohio’s cultural heritage which has reached a crisis point and must be addressed if our heritage is to be preserved.

The Connecting to Collections grant program grew out of the 2005 publication “A Public Trust at Risk: The Heritage Heath Index (HHI) Report on the State of America’s Collections,” a joint project of Heritage Preservation and IMLS. The HHI Report concludes that our nation’s collections of objects and documents are imperiled and in need of swift action. The report recommendations include:

  • Provision of safe conditions for the collections
  • Development of emergency plans
  • Assignment of responsibility for caring for collections to institutional staff
  • Broad public/private support for collection stewardship

In response to the HHI, IMLS launched a call to action entitled “Connecting to Collections.” One component was the initiation of planning grants. Each state was eligible to receive one of the $40,000 awards. Grants allow for collaborative planning partnerships among libraries, museums, archives and other statewide organizations to address the HHI recommendations. Ohio submitted an application in October 2008, receiving the award notification in February 2009. The needs assessment survey was sent to all Ohio cultural heritage organizations in early January 2010. Ohio developed a directory of contact and institutional information, conducted a needs assessment of Ohio cultural heritage institutions and hosted a summit entitled “The State of the Historical Record in Ohio” in summer 2010. All of these activities culminated in the writing of an Ohio Cultural Strategic Plan.

Click here to sign up for the Connecting to Collections (C2C) email discussion listserv.

Check out the Model Preservation Policies website.