Plimoth Plantation Receives Grants from Institute of Museum and Library Services and National Endowment for the Humanities  - See Plymouth Massachusetts


Plimoth Plantation Receives Grants from Institute of Museum and Library Services and National Endowment for the Humanities 

In the Press

August 17, 2020

Contact: Rob Kluin, Director, Marketing & Communications | 508.746.1622, ext. 8210

Plymouth, Massachusetts (August 17, 2020) – Plimoth Plantation, the living history museum of 17th-century Massachusetts, today announced that it has received grants from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). The two awards provide essential funding to develop a suite of educational resources focusing on relationships between the Indigenous Wampanoag and English colonial people in 17th century Patuxet as well as to sustain the museum’s cultural heritage collections.

Acknowledging the two grants, Plimoth’s Executive Director Ellie Donovan said, “We are so grateful to our legislators and to IMLS and NEH for their generous support of Plimoth’s educational mission. The museum strives to create meaningful encounters with history built on thorough research about the Indigenous and European people who met along these shores. We are delighted to partner with IMLS and NEH as we plan to deliver the latest research to the public across the country with these irreplaceable collections at the center of our work.”

“Plimoth Plantation is a true treasure, not only in Massachusetts, but the entire country,” said Congressman Bill Keating. “As we commemorate the 400th anniversary of the Mayflower’s landing this year, it is fitting that the museum would receive federal assistance to continue its work and mission. It is vital to our national history that we preserve the legacy of both the Wampanoag people of Patuxet and the courageous Mayflower voyagers who arrived here in 1620.”

A $227,272 “Museums for America” grant from IMLS enables Plimoth to develop a suite of educational resources for teachers, students, and the general public focusing on the relationship between the Wampanoag people of Patuxet and the Pilgrims. Educators across the country look to the museum as a source of historically accurate resources about the role of Indigenous cultures in the context of early American history, as well as how to present these topics in inclusive, equitable, and historically accurate ways. To meet that need, Plimoth will partner with public schools in Plymouth and Mashpee to develop in-school educational programs and curricular resources as well as an accompanying interactive web-based educational tool. These new resources will help disseminate the results of recent research to tell the nuanced story of the relationship between the Wampanoag people and the English colonists from multiple perspectives.

Plimoth also received a $49,200 “Sustaining Cultural Heritage Collections” grant from the NEH to create a preservation plan for the museum’s historical and archaeological resources. Through this generous grant, Plimoth will develop a care plan for the further preservation of its extensive collections of archaeological artifacts, fine and decorative art, and archival materials as well as increase accessibility to researchers. These collections are a highly-valued resource for researchers studying the 17th-century Atlantic World and inform the museum’s interpretation. Their preservation and accessibility are vital for future scholarship.

“The Center for 17th-Century Studies at Plimoth was established in 2018 to stimulate thought-provoking conversations that interpret 17th-century Atlantic World experiences and apply that knowledge and understanding to today’s world,” said Sarah Rose, Plimoth’s Deputy Director of Education and Outreach. “These grants from IMLS and NEH present an outstanding opportunity to bring together researchers, educators and lifelong learners through the Center to evaluate the most recent scholarship from multiple perspectives and facilitate thoughtful conversation.”

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About Plimoth Plantation
Through powerful personal experiences of history, Plimoth Plantation tells the stories of the Wampanoag people and the English colonists who created a new society – in collaboration and in conflict – in the 1600s. Major exhibits include Mayflower II, the historic Patuxet Wampanoag Homesite, the 17th-Century English Village, and the Plimoth Grist Mill. Located less than an hour’s drive south of Boston, and 15 minutes north of Cape Cod, the Museum is open daily from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., seven days a week. A private, 501(c)(3) not-for-profit educational institution, the Museum is supported by admission fees, donations, memberships, and revenue from a variety of educational programming, dining and gift shops. Plimoth Plantation is a Smithsonian Institution Affiliate and receives support from the Massachusetts Cultural Council, private foundations, corporations, and local businesses. For more information, visit Follow the Museum on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s libraries and museums. We advance, support, and empower America’s museums, libraries, and related organizations through grantmaking, research, and policy development. Our vision is a nation where museums and libraries work together to transform the lives of individuals and communities. To learn more, visit and follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

About The National Endowment for the Humanities
Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: