Grants Manual

MHCHG Manual

Download PDF of the Minnesota Historical and Cultural Grants Manual for Fiscal Year 2020-21, Version 6.0.

This manual provides information about the Minnesota Historical and Cultural Grants program, funded by Minnesota’s Arts and Cultural Heritage Fund. The program’s goals: to preserve and enhance access to Minnesota’s cultural and historical resources and to support projects of enduring value for the cause of history and historic preservation across the state.
Use the manual to help you prepare your grant application. First, determine whether or not your project idea is eligible for funding. Program funds must be used to supplement, not substitute for, traditional sources of funding. Then follow the steps outlined for the grant application process of the project category you choose. The manual also summarizes the requirements for administering grant projects.

Grants Manual Sections

General Information

General Information is where you find information on the goals of the grant program, where the funding comes from, deadlines, eligibility, the definition of partnerships, grant levels and the review process at each level, review criteria, and grantee's responsibilities.

Project Guidelines

Eligible projects fall into three project categories: community history projects, historic preservation projects, and structured grants. Keep in mind that these are guidelines, not a catalog of all possible projects. In addition, some projects might appear to fit under more than one category. If your planned project does not appear to fit into one of these categories, or if you are unsure which category should be applied to your project, call 651-259-3497 or e-mail the Grants Office before submitting an application. Final product(s) must be held by a Minnesota-based organization or institution.

Application Instructions and Requirements

The application process is an on-line grants system. Applicants access the system through the grants portal. Here applicants will be able to track where an application is in the review process as well as have access to information about previous grants you have received. The portal allows you to save your work on an application and come back to finish it later. The portal provides access to everything you'll need in administering a grant from the Minnesota Historical Society, from the pre-application stage through reporting on the completion of a project.

Instructions and Requirements for Pre-Applications and for Final Applications, and required application attachments, which are all located in the Minnesota Historical Society Grants Portal.

Required Documentation: 

All required attachments must be uploaded to your application in the grants portal by end of day on the deadline date. It is strongly encouraged to include the required attachments with the pre-application. Material sent after the deadline date or by any other means cannot be accepted or considered. See project guidelines for additional requirements for each category. If required attachments are not included with the final application, the request is ineligible for funding in that grant round.

Scope of Work Form
The Scope of Work Form is required for ALL Historic Preservation Construction projects.

Microfilm Budget Form
Required for all Microfilm Acquisition applications.

Bookshelf Budget Form
Required for Bookshelf applications.

National Conference Scholarship Budget Worksheet
Required for National Conference Hosted in Minnesota Scholarship applications.

Web Site Strategy Worksheet
Required for Web Development applications.

Scanning/Digitization Worksheet
Required for Digital Conversion and Reproduction applications


RFP Bid Tip Sheet [This document is currently under review and the revised version will be posted by June 2021]

Building Conditions Assessment Tip Sheet [This document is currently under review and the revised version will be posted by June 2021]

Update for the New Biennium of Historical and Cultural Heritage Grants

Version 6.0 Changes

  • Removed Structured: MNopedia – now an option through the Research and Writing category
  • Note added describing how MNopedia type essay work can continue through the Research and Writing category.
  • Added New Structured: Archaeological Collections Assessment
  • Two new eligible projects under Collections Care category: Purchase and/or installation of Collections Management Software or Archives Management Software and Purchase and/or installation of Digital Asset Management Software relating to collections Migration of collections data
  • New section MN Historical and Cultural Application Advice: Collections Software
  • Additional microfilming standards added. Label and Target examples added.
  • Added New Structured Grant: Museum Security Survey
  • Revised explanations of payments and reporting
  • New/revised Scope of Work form
  • New term –Construction Documents
  • New term – Historical Architect
  • New definition of Segmentation
  • Added definition for Enduring Value