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October 23, 2023
For More Information Contact:

Dora Ricci


State Library Awards $186,000 in Grants to Preserve Library Research Materials

The New York State Library awarded $186,708 in Conservation/Preservation Program Discretionary Grants to seven collecting institutions to preserve research materials, State Education Commissioner Betty A. Rosa announced today. These competitive, merit-based grants are part of a $1.99 million comprehensive, statewide program to preserve endangered materials, such as books and public records, important to the state located in libraries, archives, museums, historical societies, and other not-for-profit cultural organizations in New York. This year’s grants include funds for preserving microfilming, conservation treatments, stabilization, protective enclosures, and re-housing. 

Board of Regents Chancellor Lester W. Young, Jr. said, “Libraries and cultural institutions are vital resources for academic research, lifelong learning, and civic participation and education. These preservation grants play an integral role in helping to safeguard our most valuable and historical collections to remain available for future generations of New Yorkers to study and appreciate.” 

State Education Commissioner Betty A. Rosa said, “Without preservation efforts, many of our rare and important documents such as manuscripts, books, and research materials, would deteriorate and become unusable, resulting in the irretrievable loss of many of our most prized cultural heritage and collective knowledge. This funding is essential to ensuring that these significant historical resources remain available for the benefit of scholars, students, and the people of New York to study, cherish, and learn from.” 

The New York State Library’s Division of Library Development, part of the State Education Department, administers the Conservation/Preservation Program, which provides State funding for libraries and other organizations engaged in efforts to preserve deteriorating library research materials. The program was established as part of the landmark 1984 library legislation and was expanded in 1986 and 1990.  

Grant awards for 2023 through 2024 range from $8,815 to $40,000. Grant-funded projects must be completed by June 30, 2024. The application period for next year is now open and the maximum grant award has been raised to $45,000.

Grant Awards
Organization Project City County Amount

American Museum of Natural History 

A Hand for Science 

New York 

New York 


Buffalo & Erie Co Public Library 

Preservation Microfilming of Buffalo & Surrounding Suburbs Phonebooks and Directories 




Haverstraw King's Daughters Library 

Preservation of Rockland County Times via Microfilm Conversion 




Huntington Historical Society 

Conservation of Historic Account Books 




NYC Department of Records and Information Services 

Manhattan Building Plans Preservation Project 

New York 

New York 


Metropolitan Museum of Art 

Merry Little Tales for Merry Little Hearts: British Illustrated Children's Books from the Nineteenth and Twentieth Century 

New York 

New York 


New York Botanical Garden 

Early American Imprints Part 3: The Preservation of Books Published in New York State 




The New York State Library’s Conservation and Preservation of Library Research Materials Discretionary Grant Program provides financial support for projects that contribute to the preservation of significant research materials in not-for-profit libraries, archives, historical societies, and other agencies within the State of New York, whether by improving collection storage environments, reformatting or treating collections, or other preservation activities. 

Since 1986, more than $14 million has been awarded through the Discretionary Grant Program to encourage the proper care and accessibility of research materials in the State, to promote the use and development of guidelines and standards for conservation/preservation practices, and to support the growth of local and cooperative preservation programs.  

Visit the State Library’s website for a complete list of upcoming programs, including webinars, events, and onsite genealogy walking tours. Additional programs will be added to the website as they are confirmed. If any reasonable accommodation is needed (complying with the Americans with Disabilities Act), contact the Office of Cultural Education at least one week prior to the program date by emailing or calling (518) 474-2274.

The New York State Library is part of the Office of Cultural Education within the New York State Education Department. The New York State Library celebrated its bicentennial in 2018. The Library serves three major constituencies. The Regent Joseph E. Bowman Jr. Research Library, established by law in 1818, collects, preserves, and makes available materials that support State government work. 

The Library's collections, now numbering more than 20 million items, may also be used by other researchers onsite, online, and via interlibrary loan. The Talking Book and Braille Library (TBBL) lends braille, audiobooks, magazines, and special playback equipment to residents of the 55 upstate counties of New York State who cannot read printed materials because of a visual or physical disability. 

The Division of Library Development works in partnership with 72 library systems to bring library services to millions of people who use New York's academic, public, school, and special libraries. Library Development also administers State and Federal grant programs that provide aid for library services.

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