Shorefront has been awarded a two-year grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. The grant will support Shorefront’s work in collections care, programming activities, publications, the African American Heritage Sites Program and research efforts involving local reparations.
In 2019, the Foundation announced its plan to offer a total of $1 million over two annual open calls for proposals in direct support of community-based archives. More than $1.2 million was awarded to the first cohort of 15 archives. The second year provided $1 million in grants for the second cohort, and a third consecutive call for proposals is planned for 2021. Direct support is given to selected community-based archives that represent and serve communities marginalized due to oppression based on race, ethnicity, national origin, class, gender, sexuality, religion, or ability.
Shorefront’s two-year grant will increase engagement within the local Black communities, and support the following initiatives:
- Further develop partnership and collaboration with City of Evanston;
- Continue forging collaborative work with the Smithsonian’s Community Curation initiative;
- Engage the local community members in aspects of preserving their own family legacies and grow Shorefront’s archives;
- Expand collections with a focus on Island communities, specifically Haitian and Jamaican communities;
- Add additional facility improvements, storage, display, and security measures to further protect its growing archives; and produce publications through Shorefront’s publication arm, Shorefront Press.
For the last 25 years, Shorefront, and its earlier initiative, has been collecting, preserving, and educating people about Black history on Chicago’s suburban North Shore communities. Its publicly accessible archives continue to serve educational and individual initiatives in bringing local history to life and relevance, and addressing today’s issues, events and celebrations. More information about Shorefront is available at www.shorefrontlegacy.org.