What is the Humanities Council? The West Virginia Humanities Council, an independent nonpartisan nonprofit, is the state affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities. We fund hundreds of educational programs each year in history, law, literature and language, and other fields of the humanities. We deliver and support programs in communities throughout West Virginia at schools and colleges, libraries, museums, senior centers and other locations. The National Endowment for the Humanities is our primary partner and our largest source of funds.
What has the Humanities Council done lately? In the last year, the West Virginia Humanities Council invested significantly in the cultural life of the Mountain State. Our original online and digital programming was enjoyed by more than 8,600 viewers; and grants and programs were delivered to 43 West Virginia counties, even as we observed public health and social distancing advisories.
|Berkeley||Eastern West Virginia Area Health Education Center, Healthcare is Human|
|Brooke||Brooke County Library Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Cabell||Clio Foundation, Digital Humanities for West Virginia|
|Cabell||Clio Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Cabell||Huntington Museum of Art, emergency relief grant|
|Cabell||Jana Tigchelaar, C19: The Society of Nineteenth-Century Americanists 2020 Dissent|
|Cabell||Kristen Lillvis, American Literature Association|
|Cabell||Marshall University Research Corporation, Amicus Curiae Lecture Series on Constitutional Democracy|
|Cabell||Marshall University Research Corporation, emergency relief grant|
|Cabell||Marshall University Research Corporation, The Dr. Carter G. Woodson Lyceum's 2021 Institute for Black History Instruction|
|Cabell||Marshall University Research Corporation, The Wars Within, the Wars Without: Lucan's Civil War through Modern Veterans' Eyes|
|Cabell||Robert Ellison, Appalachian Studies Association|
|Cabell||Viatcheslav Gratchev, The Russian Avant-garde in the Memories of the Survivors: The Duvakin Interviews, 1967-74|
|Fayette||Mount Hope Heritage and Hope Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Fayette||Municipality of Pax, Pax Town Hall Library Revitalization|
|Gilmer||Glenville State College, emergency relief grant|
|Greenbrier||Carnegie Hall, emergency relief grant|
|Greenbrier||Greenbrier Historical Society, North House 200 Exhibit|
|Greenbrier||Nora Venezky, West Virginia Museum Association Conference: Stayin' Alive: Sustainability, Relevance, & Culture|
|Hampshire||Capon Bridge Ruritan Club, Capon Bridge Founders Day Festival|
|Hardy||Eastern WV Community and Technical College, The Rustic Mechanicals, West Virginia Shakespeare Locally|
|Hardy||Hardy County Convention & Visitors Bureau, Robert Higgins House Phase 2: Create Master Plan, Educational Programs & Community Event|
|Hardy||Lost River Projects, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Harrison||Harrison County West Virginia Historical Society, emergency relief grant|
|Harrison||Harrison County West Virginia Historical Society, The Pickle Shelf Radio Hour Podcast|
|Harrison||The VTC Legacy Fund, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Jefferson||Contemporary American Theater Festival, Inc., 2020 Humanities at the Festival|
|Jefferson||Contemporary American Theater Festival, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Jefferson||Historic Shepherdstown Commission, emergency relief grant|
|Jefferson||Jefferson County Historic Landmarks Commission, emergency relief grant|
|Jefferson||Robert C. Byrd Center for Congressional History and Education, emergency relief grant|
|Jefferson||Shepherd University Foundation, 2020 Appalachian Heritage Writer's Award, Writer-in-Residence Project and West Virginia State Common Read Program|
|Jefferson||Shepherd University Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Jefferson||Shepherd University Foundation, COVID-19 Oral History Project|
|Jefferson||Shepherd University Foundation, Toward a More Perfect Union: Teaching about Congress, the Constitution, and Representative Democracy in American History|
|Jefferson||Shepherdstown Public Library, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||Clay Center for the Arts and Sciences of WV, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||Festiv-ALL Charleston, West Virginia, Inc., Appalachian Authors' Roundtable|
|Kanawha||HOPE Community Development Corporation, Oral History of Charleston's Triangle District|
|Kanawha||Kimberly McFall, Child and the Book Conference 2020|
|Kanawha||Rural Appalachian Improvement League, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||Thanks! Plain and Simple, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||The Charleston Ballet, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||The Education Alliance, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||University of Charleston, The Blennerhassetts|
|Kanawha||West Virginia Archeological Society, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||West Virginia Land Trust, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||West Virginia Music Hall of Fame, emergency relief grant|
|Kanawha||West Virginia Public Broadcasting Foundation, Inc., Us & Them: Season 7|
|Kanawha||West Virginia State University Research and Development Corp., The Art of Story Telling|
|Kanawha||West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Lewis||The City of Weston, Historic Walking Tour of Weston Exhibits|
|Marion||Pricketts Fort Memorial Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Marshall||Marshall County Historical Society, emergency relief grant|
|Marshall||Strand Theatre Preservation Society, emergency relief grant|
|Mason||Fort Randolph Committee, emergency relief grant|
|Mason||Point Pleasant River Museum Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Mercer||Blevin Shelnutt, Marketplace Aesthetics: Making American Literature in Nineteenth-Century New York City|
|Mercer||Blevin Shelnutt, Northeast Modern Language Association Annual Convention|
|Mineral||Friends of Ashby's Fort, Inc., Dendrochronology Exhibit|
|Mineral||Friends of Ashby's Fort, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Mineral||Friends of Ashby's Fort, Inc., The Final Bastion: Continuation of Archaeology at Ashby's Fort|
|Mineral||Mineral County Historical Foundation, Inc., Twin Mountain & Potomac (TM&P) Railroad Display|
|Mingo||West Virginia Mine Wars Museum, emergency relief grant|
|Mingo||West Virginia Mine Wars Museum, Treason Trials Exhibit|
|Monongalia||Brian D. Ballentine, Data Collection, Curation, and Visualizations of Non-Human Animals|
|Monongalia||Johanna Winant, Lyric Logic|
|Monongalia||Karen Culcasi, Muslim Men and Women’s Experiences in West Virginia|
|Monongalia||Kassandra "Kassie" Colón, Rootedness in West Virginia: Young Latinx Narratives of Community, Belonging and Home|
|Monongalia||Michele Stephens, Domestic Violence in the Criminal Codes of Yucatán and Campeche, 1872-1915|
|Monongalia||Morgantown Theatre Company, emergency relief grant|
|Monongalia||Travis D. Stimeling, WV Religious Music Survey|
|Monongalia||Upper Monongahela River Association, Star City Riverfront History Plaques|
|Monongalia||West Virginia University Research Corporation, American Indian Boarding School ARCHIVES Workshop|
|Monongalia||West Virginia University Research Corporation, Hardwood & Harmony|
|Monongalia||West Virginia University Research Corporation, Undefeated: Canvas(s)ing the Politics of Voter Suppression since Women’s Suffrage Exhibition & Programming|
|Monroe||Rural Free Delivery, Inc., Evaluation and Validation of "CASS: THE PLAY" from an historical perspective|
|Morgan||Eastern Panhandle National Organization for Women, Exploring Women's Suffrage in West Virginia's Eastern Panhandle|
|Morgan||Museum of the Berkeley Springs, Morgan County Bicentennial|
|Nicholas||The Richwood Area Chamber of Commerce, emergency relief grant|
|Ohio||Ohio County Public Library, Ann Thomas Memorial Lecture with Crystal Wilkinson|
|Ohio||WALS Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Ohio||Wheeling Symphony Society, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Pocahontas||Pearl S. Buck Birthplace Foundation, emergency relief grant|
|Preston||Arthurdale Heritage, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Preston||Rowlesburg Revitalization Committee, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Putnam||Rivers to Ridges Heritage Trail, Inc., Rivers to Ridges Heritage Trail Interpretive Signage|
|Raleigh||Mountain Resources Conservation and Development Council, Sandy Creek Expedition Tour Signs|
|Randolph||Augusta Heritage Center, emergency relief grant|
|Randolph||Davis & Elkins College, Humanities at Augusta: Spotlight on American Folklife and Folk Arts|
|Randolph||Historic Beverly Preservation, emergency relief grant|
|Randolph||Interact Children's Museum, A World of Fun|
|Randolph||Michael Kline, Hippie Culture and Community Life in the Back-to-the-Land Movement: The Resettlement of Abandoned Lands in Rural West Virginia|
|Randolph||Preservation Alliance of West Virginia, Inc., Frances Benjamin Johnston: West Virginia Icon|
|Randolph||Randolph County Museum, If These Walls Could Talk|
|Tucker||Friends of Blackwater, Davis WV Industrial History Project|
|Tucker||Friends of Blackwater, emergency relief grant|
|Tucker||Voices From the Earth, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Upshur||Upshur County Public Library, emergency relief grant|
|Upshur||West Virginia Strawberry Festival, emergency relief grant|
|Wayne||Heritage Farm Museum and Village, emergency relief grant|
|Wood||Oil, Gas and Industrial Historical Association, Inc., emergency relief grant|
|Wood||Smoot Theatre Corporation, emergency relief grant|
Other Council-Funded Programs
The Council premiered the audiobook series Mysterious Mondays, featuring annotated readings of the “Uncle Abner” detective stories by West Virginia author Melville Davisson Post. Featured stories were drawn from the West Virginia Classics book series, a collaborative project of the Council and WVU Press.
Upon nomination by State Folklorist Emily Hilliard, Clay County fiddler and banjo player John Morris was named a 2020 National Endowment for the Arts National Heritage Fellow.
e-WV, The West Virginia Encyclopedia online, was accessed by 406,973 users from every state in the USA and 192 other nations and provinces. In all, e-WV recorded 1.2 million page views in 2020.
History Alive! added six living history characters, bringing the total active roster to 15, and expanded availability to include virtual performances.
In 2020 the Humanities Council awarded 45 grants in 21 counties throughout the state. The Council also awarded over $420,000 in CARES Act emergency relief funding to 49 cultural organizations and institutions in 24 counties.
The 2020 Little Lectures series was delivered online this year, for the first time allowing viewers throughout the state to enjoy one of the Council’s most popular annual programs. The full series is available on the Council’s YouTube channel.
We continued our partnership with the William G. Pomeroy Foundation to administer the national Legends & Lore Roadside Marker Program in the state of West Virginia, supporting the installation of six new roadside markers commemorating local legends and historical events.
Our Virtual West Virginia Day celebration brought a full day of Mountain State content to viewers across social media and on the Council’s main website. Highlights included a pepperoni roll-making tutorial, musical performances by our West Virginia Folklife Apprenticeship pairs, and a comprehensive multimedia exhibit on the history of the Council’s home office, Charleston’s historic MacFarland-Hubbard House.
The 1863 Club, the Council’s first formal cultivation society, welcomed its inaugural cohort of supporters in January 2020 and enters the new year with 28 active members.
Humanities Council grants funded historic walking and driving tour signs in Star City, Weston, Davis, Nitro, and the Sandy Creek area of McDowell and Mingo counties.
West Virginia Folklife collected documentation of West Virginians’ creative responses to COVID-19, including music, stories, writing, craft, art, memes, mask-making, and more.
The Council awarded funding for new museum exhibits in Beverly, Morgantown, Matewan, Keyser, Forth Ashby, and Lewisburg.
With the help from the Council’s CARES Act grants, organizations such as the Point Pleasant River Museum, the historic Cockayne Farmstead in Glen Dale, and the Pearl S. Buck Birthplace were able to continue operations and prevent staff layoffs despite revenue lost due to the pandemic.
The Council awarded funding to the history department at Shepherd University to conduct oral history interviews with West Virginians documenting their experiences with the COVID pandemic.
Nine fellowships were awarded to scholars in locations around the state, including Elkins, Morgantown, Huntington, and Athens.
Council grants supported virtual programming at the Contemporary American Theater Festival, Augusta Heritage, the Appalachian Heritage Writer-in-Residence project, and Charleston’s FestivALL.
The West Virginia Humanities Council board of directors is drawn from all parts of West Virginia. Click to see our list of board members and their locations.
View our 2019 Activities Report here.