Office of Federal Relations
The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is an independent grant-making agency of the U.S. government dedicated to supporting research, education, preservation, and public programs in the humanities. At Rutgers, the NEH supports historical editing, preservation, and community outreach efforts.

It has supported the Papers of Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony project, which is a six-volume compilation of the historical documents essential to understanding the agitation led by America’s two leading advocates of women’s right to vote.

The Thomas A. Edison Papers project involves the collection, selection, editing, and publication of the correspondence, lab notes, and related records of the nation’s most prolific inventor. The Edison Papers project recently received a $230,000 NEH matching grant, requiring that the project raise an equal amount of funds on its own. This grant is one of the first under President George W. Bush’s “We the People” initiative. The initiative, launched in September 2002 and supported by $100 million from Congress over the next three years, aims to fund grant applications that explore significant events and themes in our nation’s history.

The centennial celebration of Paul Robeson’s birth in 1998 also received NEH funds and was the largest NEH grant in New Jersey that year. It included a multimedia traveling exhibition, catalog, and series of public programs that placed the life of Paul Robeson within the context of American history during the first half of the twentieth century.

Each Spring, the Office of Federal Relations advocates for strong funding for the relatively small NEH budget. We also participate in the annual “Humanities Advocacy Day” day each April. In fiscal year 2005, the NEH received an $2.73 million increase, bringing its total budget to $138.06 million. Although small, this increase combined with an $11 million dollar increase in fiscal year 2005 and a proposed $5 million increase for fiscal year 2006 constitute the largest increase for NEH in over a decade. In previous years, threats were made to eliminate the NEH and the NEA. This year, large numbers of representatives and senators spoke out in support of increased funding for the NEH.

In recent years, the Rutgers’ Office of Federal Relations along with the higher education community have strongly advocated for The National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), which has been threatened with elimination this year. The NHPRC promotes the preservation and use of America's documentary heritage essential to understanding our democracy, history, and culture. Although the commission has a very small budget, projects at Rutgers, including the Edison Papers, have greatly benefited form the support of the NHPRC.

For more information about the NEH, check out its web site at

For more information about the NHPRC, check out The National Archives Website.

Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey
Office of Federal Relations
444 North Capitol St. Suite 351
Washington, DC 20001
Phone: 202/ 220-1336
Fax: 202/ 220-1337
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Last Updated: 07/10/2009