The Holocaust Museum & Learning Center of St. Louis has received a grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to preserve 150 collections related to Holocaust survivors who made their way to St. Louis.

The collections include oral histories, films, artifacts, photographs, artwork, letters, and archival records that chronicle to Jewish life before, during, and after the Holocaust.

Altogether, 700 cubic feet (equivalent to more than 330 archival boxes) of material will be examined.

The $6,000 Preservation Assistant Grant will allow a conservator to conduct an assessment to provide short-term recommendations focusing on remedial improvements; long-term improvements to storage and display conditions; and recommendations on how to integrate the preservation needs of the collection into the planning of the collections activities.

The Museum’s collections offer personal, and often intimate, views into life in pre-WWII Europe, the changes brought about with the rise of the Third Reich and of the Holocaust, as well as the war’s aftermath.

The material illustrates post-war struggles and the movement of people, with many of the donors (or their families) making their way to St. Louis to begin a new chapter in their lives. Among the archive’s holdings are numerous collections of U.S. soldiers who fought in Europe during WWII, many of whom helped liberate the camps. Overall, the NEH announced $14.8 million in grants to support 253 humanities projects in 44 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico. Only five of the grants went to Missouri institutions.

“From cutting-edge digital projects to the painstaking practice of traditional scholarly research, these new NEH grants represent the humanities at its most vital and creative,” said NEH Chairman Jon Parrish Peede. “These projects will shed new light on age-old questions, safeguard our cultural heritage, and expand educational opportunities in classrooms nationwide.”

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 neh.gov.