State, Tribal, and Local Plans & Grants
preservation work in action at Fort Davis

Civil Rights Grant Program


Cultural Resources National Park Service

Application Information


The National Park Service’s (NPS) FY 2017 African American Civil Rights Grant Program (AACR) will document, interpret, and preserve the sites related to the African American struggle to gain equal rights as citizens in the 20th Century. The NPS 2008 report, Civil Rights in America, A Framework for Identifying Significant Sites will serve as the reference document in determining the appropriateness of proposed projects and properties. AACR Grants are funded by the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF), administered by the NPS, and will fund a broad range of planning, preservation, and research projects for historic sites including: survey, inventory, documentation, interpretation, education, architectural services, historic structure reports, preservation plans, and bricks and mortar repair. Grants are awarded through a competitive process and do not require non-Federal match.

For the 2017 funding round, applications will be accepted through two separate funding opportunity announcements, one for physical preservation projects and one for history projects. Applicants should read and follow the instructions and requirements for the appropriate category of their proposed project. Applications must be submitted electronically through grants.gov and received by October 8, 2017.The deadline for applications has been extended due to Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

How to Apply & What is Funded

Applications are accepted only through grants.gov from August 1 to October 8, 2017. Detailed instructions for the application process are posted under each notice of funding opportunity in grants.gov. If you have questions about the application process, please contact us at preservation_grants_info@nps.gov or 202-354-2020. For assistance with using any aspect of grants.gov including registration and/or technical issues, please contact their help desk at 1-800-513-4726.

For instructions on how to complete the application, including a list of required documents, review the Notice of Funding Opportunity (NOFO) found under the "Related Documents" tab for each announcement (preservation and history). To complete and submit an application, apply through the "Package" tab for each announcement.

African American Civil Rights (AACR) Preservation Grants

Grants.gov Synopsis of African American Civil Rights Grant Announcement (Preservation) P17AS00578

Preservation: Pre-preservation and Preservation Projects

  • Preservation projects must range from $75,000 to $500,000 in federal share, of which 10% may go toward pre-preservation costs such as architectural or engineering services. Grant applications that solely involve pre-preservation work must range from $15,000 to $50,000.
  • Preservation projects fund physical preservation of a historic site to include historic districts, buildings, sites, structures, and objects. Projects must comply with Section 106, NEPA, and execute a preservation covenant/easement.
  • Eligible costs include pre-preservation studies, architectural plans and specifications, historic structure reports, and the repair and rehabilitation of historic properties according to the Secretary of the Interior’s Treatment Standards for Historic Properties.
  • All applications must include a National Register Eligibility Assessment worksheet. Properties must be listed in the National Register of Historic Places or designated a National Historic Landmark either individually or as part of a district whose significance is associated with African American Civil Rights in the 20th century. If the property is not listed for its association with African American Civil Rights in the 20th century, or not listed at all, the Eligibility Assessment form should provide information that demonstrates its association. Projects that are not listed on the National Register or are not listed in association with African American Civil Rights in the 20th Century must include a nomination or amendment to an existing nomination as part of their project.

African American Civil Rights (AACR) History Grants

Grants.gov Synopsis of African American Civil Rights Grant Announcement (History) P17AS00577

History: History Projects

  • History grant projects must range from $15,000 to $50,000 in federal share.
  • Eligible costs include survey, planning, and documentation of historic sites/events, as well as the creation of interpretive and educational materials around significant sites (including oral histories).
  • Projects must be associated with the African American civil rights movement of the 20th century.
  • Successful applications will emphasize innovative strategies, and creative projects with measurable results, and include cross-generational engagement that promote and preserve the community’s civil rights resources. Projects should involve public-private partnerships and serve as models to communities nationwide. Your project must fit one of the categories listed below. If a project overlaps more than one category, select the dominant category.
    1. Survey and Planning
    2. Research and Documentation
    3. Interpretation and Education

Before You Can Apply

  1. Ensure that Adobe Acrobat Reader is installed and updated on your computer so that you can register on all required federal sites.
  2. Ensure that your SAM.gov (System for Award Management) registration is complete and/or up-to-date.
  3. Ensure that your registration with grants.gov is complete and current.
  4. Registration on these sites can take 2-3 weeks, so please allow time.

Who May Apply

  • States and Territories
  • Federally Recognized Indian Tribes, Alaska Natives, and Native Hawaiian Organizations
  • Local Governments
  • Non-profit Organizations

Organizations not in one of these categories need to apply in partnership with an eligible recipient listed above.

What is Not Funded

  • Construction of new buildings.
  • Acquisition of collections or historic sites.
  • Conservation of collections, except as part of gathering oral history documentation.
  • Long-term maintenance or curatorial work beyond the grant period.
  • Reconstructing historic properties (recreating all or a significant portion that no longer exists).
  • Moving historic properties or work to moved historic properties that are no longer eligible for listing in the NRHP.
  • Cash reserves, endowments, or revolving funds.
  • Fund-raising costs.
  • Work performed prior to announcement of award.
  • Lobbying or advocacy activities.
  • Costs for work already completed or funded through other federal programs.