BOSTON -- Rep. Jennifer Benson, D-Lunenburg, announces the availability of matching funds for the preservation of historic objects, sites and document collections that are significant to the history of the Civil War.

The Massachusetts Sesquicentennial Commission of the Civil War is accepting applications until April 1, 2014.

Benson said, "It is important to preserve Civil War monuments, memorials, markers and documents, not only for their historic value, but also to remind us every day of the sacrifices, heroism and selflessness of those who fight to protect our Union, past and present. Municipalities that have preservation projects relevant to the Civil war should take advantage of this funding opportunity."

The program, a partnership of the Sesquicentennial Commission, the Massachusetts Department of Veterans Services and the Massachusetts Foundation for the Humanities, is now in its second cycle. Earlier this year, the commission awarded more than $91,000 in matching funds to 24 projects across the commonwealth.

"The preservation aspect of this program is just one more example of how Massachusetts is preserving the past for future generations," said Robert von Wolfgang, commission chair. "It also clearly serves as a reminder that the Civil War is a lot closer in time than most people think."

The program is open to Massachusetts municipalities and nonprofit organizations and provides state matching funds of up to 50 percent of a project's total cost, but not exceeding $7,500.


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Eligible projects may include the renovation, rehabilitation, restoration or enhancement of existing monuments or memorials relevant to the Civil War and Civil War veterans. Proposals to construct new markers for historically significant sites will also be considered. Also, eligibility was recently expanded to include preservation or digitization of historic documents. This will encompass local libraries and towns which may own or seek to acquire documents relevant to the Civil War which may require restoration or digital archiving.

The rolling application period began Jan. 1 and ends on April 1. Application materials may be found at www.MA150.org/civil-war-preservation-grants.