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​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​Historical & Archival Records Care Grant (HARC)

The application for this funding cycle runs from May 1 to August 1, 2024
          Register for an upcoming HARC grant cycle webinar: 10:00 a.m. June 18, 2024; 1:00 p.m. July 8, 2024 ​

The Historical & Archival Records Care grant program was established by the Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission (PHMC) and the State Historical Records Advisory Board (SHRAB) to assist non-profits and local governments with the preservation of historically valuable original documents. The grants are administered on a competitive basis.  Funding for the awards is for two years.  Grants will be awarded based on review of the application by a sub-committee of SHRAB members. Please note that works-of-art, textiles, artifacts and museum objects are not eligible.  


To apply for a Historical & Archival Records Care Grant, an organization must meet the following criteria:
be a nonprofit (must have tax-exempt status with the Internal Revenue Service) or local government entity located in Pennsylvania;
be incorporated and in existence for two years prior to the submission of a grant application; 
•       submit the grant application through the DCED's Electronic Single Application for Assistance website​
is encouraged to be registered with the Pennsylvania Department of State’s Bureau of Corporations and Charitable Organizations, as required.  
Examples of eligible (PDF) and ineligible (PDF) organizations and projects.

Levels of Funding

There are two levels of funding for the Historical & Archival Records Care Grants:
Single organization grants in amounts up to and including $5,000. No match required.
Collaborative grants, where organizations can apply jointly for up to $15,000. This would include two organizations applying jointly for up to $10,000 or three organizations applying collaboratively for up to $15,000. No match required. 

General Conditions for Projects

All projects must relate directly to some aspect of Pennsylvania history.
An organization must be engaged in the preservation of original historical records for public access.
Proposals must adhere to professional archival standards for the care, preparation and storage of materials.  For further information, see the Pennsylvania State Archives’ “Archives Without Tears” (AWOT) online modules and the Historical Society of Pennsylvania’s Archival Basics resource page.
Digitization projects must follow the Pennsylvania State Archives’ Digitization Guidelines (PDF).
It is the grantee’s responsibility to determine if aspects of their project may be subject to the Enhanced Minimum Wage Provision (PDF). 
Work cannot begin until the successful applicant has received a fully executed Grant Agreement.  Work commencing prior to disbursement of funds cannot be reimbursed.
Funding may be requested for surveying, inventorying, preserving, arranging, and describing historical records relevant to Pennsylvania.
Funding may also be requested for reformatting or the purchase of supplies and equipment.  
Examples of successful records care projects for historical repositories (PDF).
Examples of successful local government projects (PDF). 

Examples of Ineligible Project Activities

endowments, prizes, or awards   
general operating support   
capital improvement projects   
lobbying-related expenses or expenses for entertainment   
existing part-time or full-time staff positions (this includes hiring part-time staff during their nonworking hours)   
projects that have been initiated prior to the date of the award   
projects that serve a religious purpose or promote religious dogma   
any project whose results are not publicly available, except where prohibited by law   
projects involving widely published or non-original materials, such as newspapers, published maps and ephemera, except in cases where those materials: 
1. are unlikely to exist elsewhere e.g.: a small community newspaper of historical significance with no other known existing copies; 
2. uniquely document a community, organization, or business, e.g.: newsletters or concert programs; or 
3. provide distinct context based on the creator’s organization, e.g.: news clippings and ephemera assembled in such a way as to offer additional insight in to a business, community, or event
projects dealing with works-of-art, published books, textiles, artifacts, or museum objects 
records or office management projects that do not relate to normal archival functions or goals, such as projects for the creation of a new filing, storage, or retrieval system for active non-permanent office files. 

Selection Process and Criteria

The panel of grant reviewers will be using this criteria (PDF) to score all applications. Sample HARC evaluation scoring sheet​. (PDF)
Please note that providing only the required information in the grant system and skipping other sections of the application may result in lower scores.  The grant applications will be scored on by the panel on how well they meet this criteria.  

Application Process​

Grants may only be submitted through the online system​ from May 1 to August 1. 
Your organization may need to register as a First Time User. 
Once you register and login to the system, this is the easiest way to begin a new PHMC Cultural and Historical Support grant application:

  • Create a Project Name such as "My PHMC Archival Grant." 
  • Select "YES" for "help selecting your program"
  • Click "Create a new application"
  • Select "PHMC" under the Agencies heading and click SEARCH
  • Click "Apply" next to the Historical and Archival Records Care Grants
  • It is critical that grantees retain login and password information throughout the lifecycle of their grant term. Please be sure to update contact information as necessary.

Please contact the Enterprise eGrants Customer Service Center. Representatives are available Monday through Friday, from 8:30 AM until 6:00 PM, at 833-448-0647. Email inquiries can also be sent to

Grant Application Timeline

May 1 of Application Year                              Application opens

May/June/July of Application Year            HARC Grant webinar(s)

August 1 of Application Year                        Application deadline

December of Application Year                    Recipients announced

January of Grant Cycle 1st Year                  Award/rejection letters mailed to                                                                                           applicants

Grant Timeline (2yr Cycle) 

February-April of Grant Cycle 1
st Year    Grant agreements mailed to                                                                                                   applicants

May 1 of Grant Cycle 1st Year                       Grant recipients will begin their                                                                                              projects 

November 1 of Grant Cycle 1st Year          First six-month Interim Report due

May 1 of Grant Cycle 2nd Year                    Second six-month Interim Report due

November 1 of Grant Cycle 2nd Year         Third six-month Interim Report due

May 30 of Grant Cycle 2nd Year                 Grant project end date

June 31 of Grant Cycle 2nd Year                 Final Reports due


State Archives staff is available to assist in answering your questions.  Contact the Grant Manager at (preferred) or 717-705-1676 with project related queries.​