Activate History micro-grants

In early 2020, Illinois Humanities launched a new micro-grants program, Activate History, in order to inspire and help enable those who have local collections of various kinds (archives, texts, photos, stories, etc) to explore creative ways for community members to become more engaged with them. We see this work as encouraging individual curiosity and connections to local history; as celebrating the efforts of amateur and other local historians; and as an avenue for growing the outreach efforts of local collections– all of which helps bolster community identity. Illinois Humanities has designed this micro-grants program to be accessible with a quick turnaround, in response to the dearth of available funds for individuals and smaller entities to host discussions on history and related matters.

As we transition our grantmaking software, the March 1, 2021 cycle’s application will be available again on January 15, 2021. If you have any questions in the meantime, please contact Mark Hallett, Director, Grant Programs, at

For more information, contact Mark Hallett, director of grant programs, Illinois Humanities, at

*Above featured photograph by Rose Blouin

Previously Awarded Organizations

To date, Illinois Humanities has made 122 awards through its micro-grants programs.

Note: Some organizations have received more than one micro-grant award.