Legends & Lore

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Legends & Lore® Marker Grant Program

What is the Legends & Lore® Marker Grant Program?

The Connecticut Museum of Culture and History has partnered with the William G. Pomeroy Foundation to feature Connecticut cultural heritage on roadside markers at sites across the state. Established by the Syracuse, NY-based Pomeroy Foundation in 2015, Legends & Lore® was designed to promote cultural tourism and commemorate legends and folklore. The program brings public recognition to many forms of meaningful placemaking across the state, affirming the many cultures, traditions, and communities that make Connecticut distinctive.

Examples of markers range from nationally famous legends like John Henry in Talcott, WV, to the locally distinctive “Shushan Postmaster” fishing fly from Shushan, NY. Legends & Lore® markers recognize a wide variety of knowledge and narratives. (Please note that this marker program is not affiliated with the State or National Register of Historic Places, nor is it a historic site marker program.)

For selected applicants to the program, the Pomeroy Foundation’s grants cover the entire cost of a marker, pole, and shipping. The responsibility for the grantee is installation, maintenance, and the cost of a break-away pole, if required by their municipality.

The Pomeroy Foundation is a private, grant-making foundation founded in 2005 that helps people celebrate their community’s history through a variety of historic signage grant programs, including Legends & Lore®. The Foundation is committed to supporting the celebration and preservation of community history; and to raising awareness, supporting research, and improving the quality of care for patients and their families who are facing a blood cancer diagnosis. To date, the Foundation has awarded more than 1,000 grants for markers and grants nationwide. Visit: https://www.wgpfoundation.org

What “legends?” What “lore?”

“Folklore” encompasses many forms of informal, traditional culture. Markers should reflect important parts of community cultural heritage, which can include local tales as well as traditions, crafts, celebrations, music, and people whose identity is important to the place. What are important parts of your community’s story that should be passed on?

What matters is not that a tradition, story, or person be historically verifiable, but that it be locally meaningful.

Note: for locally significant foodways, the Pomeroy Foundation has a separate grant program, Hungry for History.

More examples of projects:

Check out the interactive map of all the current Legends & Lore markers HERE.

Clicking through on the map pins will first reveal the marker text, with an additional page of information if you click “Learn More.”

Who can apply?

Legends & Lore® marker grants are available to 501(c)(3) organizations, nonprofit academic institutions, and municipalities in Connecticut, so individuals wishing to apply will need a local partner. Applicants to the program will be evaluated on the legitimacy and accuracy of the material that applicants in Connecticut intend to commemorate on a marker.

How do I apply?

Go to https://www.wgpfoundation.org/history/legends-lore/, where you can click “Apply for Grant” to start an application. If you want to get feedback before applying, or if you are an individual who would like recommendations of organizational partners for the grant, please contact Kate Schramm, kschramm@connecticutmuseum.org.

When is the application due?

There are two annual deadlines for applications in 2024.

Round 1

  • 03/11/24 – Application available online
  • 04/29/24 – Application deadline
  • August 2024 – Grants awarded

Round 2

  • 08/26/24 – Application available online
  • 10/14/24 – Application deadline
  • January 2025 – Grants awarded

I have more questions!

For questions about application content, please contact Kate Schramm.

For more questions on the Legends & Lore Roadside Marker Program, Check out the Frequently Asked Questions page here: https://www.wgpfoundation.org/history/legends-lore/faq/

For technical questions about the application system, please contact: info@wgpfoundation.org or call (315) 913-4060.

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