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Sacha Turpin
Senior Director of Member Communications
800.999.8558, ext. 4829
[email protected]
LYRASIS and Partners Receive Third HBCU Photo Preservation Grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation

Atlanta, GA - July 9, 2014 -

The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation (Mellon Foundation) has awarded LYRASIS and its partners - the Conservation Center for Art and Historic Artifacts (CCAHA), HBCU Library Alliance, Image Permanence Institute (IPI) and University of Delaware (UD) Art Conservation Department - a grant of $700,000 to support the preservation of local photographic and magnetic media collections, increase their use in scholarly endeavors, and encourage student engagement therein at a select group of five Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs). The 28-month project builds on existing activity and accomplishments from two previous preservation grant awards from the Mellon Foundation to LYRASIS and its partners. This grant award provides a total of 9 years of funding for photographic preservation and related student mentorship and staff development at HBCUs.


The program focuses on preservation within the culturally and historically rich special collections of HBCUs. These institutions hold extensive and valuable photographic and audiovisual collections acquired over many years documenting the African American experience, including many recordings from the Civil Rights Era captured on magnetic media, such as audio cassette tapes, video tapes, and reel-to-reel tapes. In addition to preserving and improving access to these collections, this project will support the use of the collection content in educational programming, and training and career mentorship of undergraduate and graduate students in preservation, conservation and related fields. The program will also involve active outreach to other HBCU librarians and archivists to promote preservation best practices.


"We are honored to continue our work with the HBCU community in order to preserve, maintain and enhance access to these important and inspiring collections," stated Kate Nevins, Executive Director of LYRASIS. "This grant reinforces our longstanding commitment and relationship with the HBCU Library Alliance, CCAHA, IPI and the University of Delaware to work collaboratively to ensure preservation and sustainable access to significant content - in this case, noteworthy cultural and historic moments captured with photography and related tools."


LYRASIS, a non-profit membership organization, partners with member libraries, archives and museums to create, access and manage information with an emphasis on digital content, while building and sustaining collaboration, enhancing operations and technology, and increasing buying power. For more information, please visit


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