News & Updates

CORNWALL HISTORICAL SOCIETY AWARDED GRANT

CORNWALL, CT (October 25, 2023) — Following a statewide survey by the Connecticut State Historical Records Advisory Board and Conservation ConneCTion, Cornwall Historical Society was among ten institutions chosen to participate in its grant funded “Subject Guide Project.” The Subject Guide Project aims to bring together resources that document the experiences and representations of African Americans, Native Americans, and other people of color in Connecticut from the colonial era to the present.

The Cornwall Historical Society was awarded a grant of $1,250 which will be used for a Traveling Archivist. The archivist will help create a subject guide for the records in the Society’s collection that reveal the stories, experiences, and history of these traditionally excluded voices. The subject guide will be added to Connecticut’s Archives Online, where other subject guides can currently be found. The project is designed around the goal of making these resources discoverable online. “An important part of our mission is to share our collections beyond the walls of our building and this grant will allow us to do that,” stated the Society’s curator, Suzie Fateh. “Our subject guide will be the culmination of research work that started in 2013 when Ryan Bachman, an intern at the Society, began scouring our archives, the town’s records, and archives at other institutions to find every piece of information about African Americans in Cornwall during the 19th century.”

Funding for the Subject Guide Project was provided by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission and administered by the Connecticut State Library on behalf of the Connecticut State Historical Records Advisory Board and Conservation ConneCTion.

CORNWALL HISTORICAL SOCIETY RECEIVES CT CULTURAL FUND OPERATING SUPPORT GRANT FROM CONNECTICUT HUMANITIES

CORNWALL, CT (January 4, 2023) — The Cornwall Historical Society is pleased to announce that it was awarded a $7,300 CT Cultural Fund Operating Support Grant by CT Humanities (CTH). This grant will help supplement the Society’s operating budget.

CT Cultural Fund Operating Support Grants are administered by CT Humanities (CTH), with funding provided by the Connecticut State Department of Economic and Community Development (DECD)/Connecticut Office of the Arts (COA) from the Connecticut State Legislature. These grants are designed to assist organizations as they recover from the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Cornwall Historical Society was one of 725 organizations in Connecticut receiving a CT Cultural Fund Operating Support Grant. Totaling more than $8.5M, these grants are part of a two-year, $30.7M investment in arts, humanities, and cultural nonprofits by the CT General Assembly and approved by Governor Ned Lamont.

The Cornwall Historical Society relies on grants and donations to produce exhibitions, provide educational programs, and care for its collections and building.

About Connecticut Humanities

CT Humanities (CTH) is an independent, nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. CTH connects people to the humanities through grants, partnerships, and collaborative programs. CTH projects, administration, and program development are supported by state and federal matching funds, community foundations, and gifts from private sources. Learn more by visiting cthumanities.org.

About Connecticut Office of the Arts

The Connecticut Office of the Arts (COA) is the state agency charged with fostering the health of Connecticut’s creative economy. Part of the state’s Department of Economic and Community Development, the COA is funded by the State of Connecticut and the National Endowment for the Arts.

Cornwall Historical Society Receives $11,386 Planning Grant from CT Humanities

Cornwall, Conn. (January 6, 2022) — The Cornwall Historical Society is pleased to announce it has received a grant in the amount of $11,386 from Connecticut Humanities (CTH). The funds will support the research and planning phase of the Society’s new exhibition Finding Freeman(s): Freedom, Property, and Identity in Cornwall, scheduled to open in the summer of 2022.

The exhibition will be a first time look at the town’s free and enslaved Black residents and that community’s impact on Cornwall’s history as well as its future. “Finding Freeman(s)” will be guest curated by Dr. Frank Mitchell, director emeritus of the Amistad Center for Art and Culture in Hartford.

Finding Freedman(s) was inspired in part by George Floyd’s death in 2020,” said Suzie Fateh, the Society’s curator. “Although research on Cornwall’s Black residents began before Floyd’s murder, in the months following staff and the Board saw an immediate need for transforming the research project into an exhibition. As an historical society with collections that span almost 300 years, it is our mission and responsibility to ensure that our exhibitions and programming accurately reflect the history of Cornwall and the region.  This grant will ensure the resources necessary to prepare for the exhibition and programs that will change perception of Cornwall’s history. We are extremely fortunate to have Frank as our guest curator — he will play a central role in guiding the development of this exhibition.”

Black and Native residents created a world in 18th and 19th century Cornwall and, as is true for so many Connecticut towns, these residents and their stories disappear by the early 20th century. This exhibition will offer visitors an alternative to the standard history that we know.

About Connecticut Humanities: Connecticut Humanities (CTH) is an independent, nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. CTH connects people to the humanities through grants, partnerships, and collaborative programs. CTH projects, administration, and program development are supported by state and federal matching funds, community foundations and gifts from private sources. Learn more by visiting cthumanities.org.

Cornwall Historical Society Receives CT Cultural Fund Operating Support Grant

Cornwall, Conn. (December 29, 2021) — The Cornwall Historical Society is pleased to announce that it has received a CT Cultural Fund Operating Support Grant (CTCFOSG) from Connecticut Humanities (CTH), the statewide, nonprofit affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH).

Cornwall Historical Society was one of 624 organizations in Connecticut that was awarded CT Cultural Fund support totaling $16M from Connecticut Humanities. The CTCFOSG are part of $30.7M of support allocated to arts, humanities, and cultural nonprofits through Connecticut Humanities over the next two years by the CT General Assembly and approved by Governor Ned Lamont. The CTCFOSG will assist organizations as they recover from the pandemic and maintain and grow their ability to serve their community and the public.

THANK YOU Connecticut Humanities for generously awarding us with a $10,300 general operating grant!

The Cornwall Historical Society relies on grants and donations to produce exhibitions, provide educational programs, and provide for the upkeep and care of our facilities.

This grant was administered by CT Humanities (CTH), with funding provided by the Connecticut State Department of Economic and Community Development/Connecticut Office of the Arts (COA) from the Connecticut State Legislature.

Cornwall Historical Society Receives a $2,268 Grant from The Cornwall Foundation, Inc.

Cornwall, Conn. (February 25, 2020) — The Cornwall Historical Society is pleased to announce that it has received a grant of $2,268 from the Cornwall Foundation, Inc. The grant will support the cost of purchasing new shelving for the Society’s clothing and textile collection.

In 2018, the Cornwall Historical Society undertook a complete reevaluation of its costume collection, and with the help of a textile consultant discovered that the Society holds unusually fine 19th century costumes. “We are very excited to receive this grant,” said Suzie Fateh, curator of the Cornwall Historical Society. “As part of our ongoing improvements to our collection storage areas, this grant will help support appropriate housing for our textile and costume collection.”

The Society is home to a collection of textiles ranging from circa 1810 through approximately the late 1930s. Some of the materials in this collection include General John Sedgwick’s military uniform (Civil War), two dresses made in India (c. 1810) that were owned by Catherine Wadsworth, several Victorian-era women’s two and three-piece outfits and dresses, men’s Victorian formal wear, children’s clothing, many hats, fans, and parasols, and a large portion of which were gifts from the Gold family of Cornwall.

This grant will make it possible for the Society to purchase shelving for a new storage room to properly protect the collection.

Cornwall Historical Society Awarded $4,500 from the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation

Cornwall, Conn. (April 1, 2019) — The Cornwall Historical Society is pleased to announce that it was awarded a grant of $4,500 from the Northwest Connecticut Community Foundation (NCCF). This grant was used to upgrade and improve the Society’s collection storage areas.

The Cornwall Historical Society collects and protects objects, photographs and documents that tell the story of Cornwall and its people. Like most museums and historical societies, a large percentage of its collection is in storage behind closed doors. A reassessment in the fall of 2018 showed that the Society was quickly outgrowing its storage space; existing areas had become extremely overcrowded and unusable, and collections were at risk. To improve this, storage needed to be reorganized not only to make collections easily accessible for researchers and staff, but also for their long-term care and preservation. The grant funds were used to purchase new storage shelving and new archival storage containers.

The grant awarded helped start a multi-phase storage reorganization project that will be ongoing for several years.