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State Historical Society of Iowa

Historical Resource Development Program: Museums

Project Types

If your project focuses on the care and collection of museum objects, you will want to apply in the museums category.

Projects in this category may include, but are not limited to:

  • Public education, staff training, or consultation related to museum activities
  • Cataloging
  • Conservation survey of collections
  • Treatment of collections
  • Artifact acquisition
  • Artifact conservation
  • Interpretation of artifact collections
  • Exhibitions
  • Equipment, supplies, and facilities related to artifact preservation

Professional Standards

All projects must comply with certain nationally-accepted professional standards. Applicants must demonstrate knowledge of, intention to, and ability to adhere to, the professional standards that pertain to the grant category to which they are applying.

Every project is strongly encouraged to involve a trained professional in a discipline appropriate to the project scope.

The applicable standards for Museums are as follows:

  • Projects in the museum category must demonstrate the commitment and ability of the applicant to provide care for collections on a long-term basis.
  • Applicants must demonstrate that they understand, and intend to adhere to, applicable national standards, or otherwise follow technical guidelines generally accepted by the museum profession.
  • The review panel members will use their judgment to determine that the applicant has knowledge of, and a commitment to meet, acceptable standards for collections management and care.
  • If the application requests funding for a museum activity, then the project is strongly encouraged to include the services of an appropriate professional.

For guidance regarding museum practices, the following resources are available:

Additional guidance regarding museum practices can be obtained from the American Association for State and Local History, American Alliance of Museums and the Iowa Museum Association.

Staff Resources

As you prepare your application, you may have technical questions about specific types of resources and professional standards. The following staff resources are available:

Questions about the grant application process:
Kristen Vander Molen, Grants Manager – 515-281-4228

Questions about projects in the museums category:
Kay Coats, Collections Coordinator – 515-281-8295
Jodi Evans, Museum Registrar - 515-281-3295
Andrew Harrington, Exhibits Manager – 515-725-2921
Leo Landis, Curator – 515-281-4006

Locating Good and Services for Museums Projects

The law establishing the HRDP program stipulates that grantees should give preference to Iowa vendors. Goods and services should not be obtained outside the state unless the grantee demonstrates that it is neither feasible nor prudent to obtain the goods or services within the state.

Our office has found that sometimes grantees have no choice but to choose an out-of-state vendor. For example, few archival supplies are available in quantity from Iowa vendors. There are some Iowa businesses that provide archival supplies, however. The following list is intended to provide guidance in locating archival products for documentary collection and museum projects.

Some Sources of Archival Supplies

Within Iowa, the following supplier may have the archival materials you seek:

Archival Products
P.O. Box 1413
Des Moines, Iowa 50306-1413
Art supply stores in larger Iowa communities may also stock some containers and related supplies that are appropriate for storage of paper holdings.

There are several archival suppliers located in other states, including:
Bags Unlimited, Inc.
7 Canal Street
Rochester, New York 14608

Gaylord Bros., Inc.
P.O. Box 4901
Syracuse, New York 13221-4901

Hollinger Metal Edge
6340 Bandini Blvd.
Commerce, CA 90040
Phone: 800-862-2228
Fax: 888-822-6937
9401 Northeast Dr.
Fredericksburg, VA 22408
Phone: 800-634-0491
Fax: 800-947-8814

University Products Inc.
517 Main Street
Holyoke, MA 01040
Phone: 800-628-1912
Fax: 800-532-9281

Finding a Professional to Work on Your Grant Project

The Iowa Museum Association (IMA) is a non-profit organization whose mission is to provide quality training and development to Iowa museum professionals and volunteers, advocate for support of member museums, and build a strong community of museums in Iowa. The IMA may be able to assist you in locating qualified professionals for your grant project.

Cynthia Sweet, Executive Director
Iowa Museum Association
PO Box 824
Cedar Falls, Iowa 50613

Another source for professionals and museum supplies is:
The American Alliance of Museum’s Museum Marketplace