The National Trust for Historic Preservation typically is at the forefront of fights to save old places and buildings– those that have a strong connection to events in the past. However, with the announcement of the 2020 recipients of its African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund grants, the National Trust is helping to preserve the present.
This year the trust awarded $50,000 to Minneapolis’ historic preservation office to document the events occurring in the city around the police murder of George Floyd. Executive Director of the trust’s African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund Brent Leggs told Architectural Digest, “After the horrific killing of George Floyd, we realized there was an opportunity to make the connection between preservation, history, and this kind of injustice that impacts Black communities across the country.” This grant represents the first time that the National Trust has given funding to preserve contemporary events.
The African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund has provided over $4.3 million in its first three years to support the preservation of sites related to Black history. The fund awarded $1.6 million to twenty seven organizations in its most recent round of grants. Recipients in the Mid-Atlantic region include the Banneker-Douglass Museum Foundation in Annapolis, Maryland, the Lewis Latimer House Museum in Flushing, New York, and the Clifton House in Baltimore.
A full list of 2020 African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund recipients can be viewed here.