Indianapolis Public Library Announces Major Grants for New Projects
Grants totaling nearly $3.3 million dollars have been awarded to The Indianapolis Public Library Foundation for individual Library projects that will preserve Indianapolis history, establish a new collection highlighting African-American culture, and improve the Library experience for immigrant residents in the community.
A $3.1 million grant from Lilly Endowment Inc. will fund two major Library projects over the next five years. In preparation for the city of Indianapolis' bicentennial in 2020, IndyPL will digitize and make available for free online access a significant portion of the histories of the Indianapolis Public Schools, Indianapolis Fire Department, Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department and Indianapolis Parks and Recreation Department. More than one million pages of records, 150 3-D objects and 400 films would be digitized, supplementing an abundance of existing digitized records from various local arts organizations found at indypl.org. The project underscores a Library priority in its strategic plan to digitize community records which could be lost to time or neglect.
The Lilly Endowment Inc. grant also will create by the fall of 2017 the Center for African-American Literature and Culture at Central Library, a place to study the works of local African-American writers and discover the rich heritage of Black authors from Indiana and beyond. IndyPL will provide programming, including author talks and author fairs, to highlight the collection and showcase the African-American experience in Indianapolis. The work of the Library's African-American History Committee also will be highlighted. Curated by a dedicated librarian with an initial collection of 10,000 volumes, the Center will ensure that the Black experience is not only remembered but that its materials are easily accessible to inspire others.