SC Humanities Awards $72,000 in Grants

The South Carolina Humanities Board of Directors awarded more than $72,000 in Major Grants to 9 cultural organizations after a Feb ruary 18, 2022 Board Meeting in Columbia.

The awards were selected through a competitive application and review process and are made possible by SC Humanities and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Matching community support for the 9 awarded projects totaled: $148,205.

A list of awarded grants is provided below:

Sponsoring Organization: Sigal Music Museum
Project Title: “The Sounds of America” Exhibit
Project Director: Thomas Strange
Awarded: $10,000; Cost-share: $54,200
The Sigal Music Museum in Greenville will present a new original exhibit titled “The Sounds of America,” opening in June 2022. The exhibit will feature instruments from 1750 to the present and stories about them that explore elements of American history as well as America’s pivotal role in the world music industry. The exhibit will include numerous significant instruments from the museum’s collection, informational banners, sound sticks, and QR codes to create an immersive experience into American music history. The museum will also build a re-creation of the store front of Greenville’s first music store and display related artifacts.

Sponsoring Organization: South East Rural Community Outreach
Project Title: Juneteenth Celebration at the Harriet Barber House
Project Director: Mary B. Kirkland
Awarded: $8,000; Cost-share: $15,000
On June 19th, 2022, South East Rural Community Outreach will present a major Juneteenth celebration event on the grounds of the historic Harriet Barber House that will include tours of the house, Chautauqua-style historic impersonations of the figures of Sam and Harriet Barber, exhibits, a symposium lecture with scholars, performances, and re-enactments. The event is intended to highlight the unique history of the Barber family, the Reconstruction Era, and the history of Lower Richland County.

Sponsoring Organization: Fountain Inn Museum
Project Title:
On the Banks of Durbin Creek
Project Director: Mary Hannah Willingham
Awarded: $5,787; Cost-share: $5,954
The Fountain Inn Museum will create a short, “silent” video that will show how Fountain Inn and its populations have evolved from the 1700s through the present. The film will be shown on a constant loop as part of the museum’s exhibits, and it will also be used as a portable educational and program tool at schools and other community venues. The film is expected to be completed in July and be introduced at the museum in August 2022.

Sponsoring Organization: Butler Heritage Foundation
Project Title: The History of the Butler Heritage Foundation
Project Director: Jennifer Heusel
Awarded: $10,000; Cost-share: $13,150
The Butler Heritage Foundation will create a documentary and printed publication tracing the history of the organization, especially how its creation related to school segregation in South Carolina. Oral histories of at least five interviewees, former graduates of or teachers at Butler High School, will be collected, and the foundation’s documents will be researched, organized, and archived. The research will be compiled into a 30-page publication and a 15-20-minute video, which will premiere at a special event at the Butler Community Center campus in January 2023.

Sponsoring Organization: Culture and Heritage Museums
Project Title: Historic Brattonsville Orientation Exhibit
Project Director: Zach Lemhouse
Awarded: $4,454; Cost-share: $5,608
The Culture and Heritage Museums will create a new orientation/welcome exhibit at Historic Brattonsville that will tell a more inclusive story with additional information about influential women and Brattonsville’s African American population. The exhibit will consist of 11 wall-mounted text panels, artifacts, a wall-mounted timeline, and audio-visual equipment to screen videos. The exhibit has an estimated opening in early fall 2022.

Sponsoring Organization: Stone Soup Storytelling Institute
Project Title: 2022 Stone Soup Storytelling Festival
Project Director: Karyn Page-Davies
Awarded: $4,837; Cost-share: $9,575
The 2022 Stone Soup Storytelling Festival is scheduled for April 22 – 24, 2022 in Woodruff, SC, a rural part of Spartanburg County. The event will offer four featured tellers and eight “new voices” presenters, who are “up and coming” storytellers. They will also send storytellers into local schools on the Friday of the festival. Several of the storytellers specialize in cultural stories, such as folktales, mythology, African mythology, black folklore, and Anansi stories. Opportunities for Q&A, discussion, and interaction amongst audience members and presenters are offered.

Sponsoring Organization: Able South Carolina
Project Title: The Bull Street Campus Through the Lens of the Disability Community
Project Director: Kimberly Tissot
Awarded: $9,158; Cost-share: $9,158
Able SC will partner with Historic Columbia to create a shared history about the Bull Street campus from the untold perspective of the disability community that once lived there. This will be a multi-channel project, starting with a public website sharing stories of patients, family members, former employees, and advocates. The website will be accessible to all but will be especially designed for use in schools, adding the disability rights movement to the Civil Rights curriculum. Additionally, a second phase will create wayside signage to be installed around the Bull Street District, and eventually there will be a series of educational forums, tours, and an event in July 2023 commemorating the 33rd anniversary of the Americans with Disabilities Act.

Sponsoring Organization: Center for Creative Partnerships
Project Title: Meltdown in Dixie: Engage, Empower, Transform
Project Director: Ellen Zisholtz
Awarded: $10,000; Cost-share: $23,800
The Center for Creative Partnerships will coordinate a series of public screenings and discussions of the documentary Meltdown in Dixie (2021), which examines the complexities of race and Southern culture through the story of a battle over display of a Confederate flag in Orangeburg, SC. The documentary was also funded by SC Humanities with a Major Grant. Between May 2022 and April 2023, the film will be screened at least monthly at 13 different venues, including Bamberg 2 Schools, USCB Performing Arts Center in Beaufort, Avery Research Center in Charleston, Florence County Museum, Georgetown County Library, Palmetto Theater in Hampton, Morris Center for Lowcountry Heritage in Ridgeland, The Echo Theater in Laurens, Newberry Opera House, Orangeburg County Library, Nickelodeon Theater in Columbia, and the Arts Council of York County. Each screening will be followed by a moderated discussion with both local and state scholars. Scholars William Hine and Larry Watson will design a discussion and study guide that will be made available to participants in the screenings. Some screenings might be live-streamed to include virtual audiences.

Sponsoring Organization: Moving Image Research Collection
Project Title: MIRC Regional Film Roadshow
Project Director: Lydia Pappas
Awarded: $9,931; Cost-share: $11,760
The Moving Image Research Collection (MIRC) at the University of South Carolina’s University Libraries Special Collections will present a series of four public film screenings of archival, amateur-made films in rural communities from May – August 2022. The films explore regional areas of the state but have generally never been screened or discussed in the communities they represent. The archival films will be digitized and made available online as well as screened to the local communities, and humanities scholars will provide contextualization. The four targeted communities are Saluda, Bennettsville, Georgetown, and Pendleton. In each community, MIRC and partners/scholars from Columbia will partner with local cultural institutions and local scholars to prepare programming notes and offer a community discussion.