Congresswoman Gwen Moore Announces NEH Grants to Fund Efforts to Uplift Important Milwaukee History

Congresswoman Gwen Moore Announces NEH Grants to Fund Efforts to Uplift Important Milwaukee History

Today, Congresswoman Moore announced that Diverse and Resilient, Inc. will receive $149,969 through the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) to support House of History Project: Black LGBTQ+ Survivors and Thrivers in Milwaukee and $147,412 for UW-Milwaukee’s digital platform to map racism and resistance in Milwaukee County. In response, she released the following statement:

UW-Milwaukee’s Digital Platform to Map Racism and Resistance in Milwaukee County

“It is vital for all of us to know the history of housing discrimination in Milwaukee and how these policies and practices helped create housing disparities we see today. It is also important to lift up the stories of residents in our community who pushed back against discriminatory policies to create change. I am thrilled that the NEH funding is helping support a digital platform that will allow people to see this history in such a creative way,” said Congresswoman Moore.

“We are honored to receive funding from the NEH for our community engaged research on racial covenants and resistance to them. This grant will support our work with UWM Libraries to ensure our data on racial covenants is publicly accessible for the community and other researchers. It will also support the creation of a digital platform to encourage community engagement and dialogue about racial segregation and struggles for housing in Milwaukee,” Dr. Anne Bonds, Professor & Associate Chair, Department of Geography, University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee.

“This is a community project and would not be possible without the numerous volunteers that we’ve worked with to document and transcribe racial covenants. I’m very appreciative that the NEH recognizes this work and has supported our efforts to develop a digital platform for the Milwaukee community,” Dr. Derek Handley, Assistant Professor, English, University of Wisconsin - Milwaukee.

House of History Project: Black LGBTQ+ Survivors and Thrivers in Milwaukee

“Milwaukee is home to amazing Black LGBTQ+ Milwaukee leaders whose stories must be more broadly known. This project is a wonderful opportunity to share their efforts to create community and networks of support, challenge racism, homophobia, and transphobia while seeing the impact of the HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 public health crises. Hearing these oral histories can be both educational and inspirational, which is why this grant is so important,” said Congresswoman Moore.

“House of History is establishing a dynamic platform to highlight the unique contributions and experiences of Milwaukee’s Black LGBTQ+ community,” says its creative director DeMar Walker, a Black cis gay man. “Our voices are necessary to better understand the nuances of

place, identity, and authenticity.”

“We have brought many gifts to this world,” says house mother and outreach director Janice Toy, a Black trans woman. “For me it is an honor to be given this opportunity to share with the world these hidden jewels that have been overlooked or taken for granted; gifts and stories

many have given and lost their lives over.”    

“Applying for this grant seemed like such a long shot, but definitely a shot worth taking,” says project director Dr. Brice D. Smith, a white trans man with a PhD in history. “Black LGBTQ+ people deserve their rightful place in history. Helping to make that happen is an honor and a


Grant Information

Board of Regents of University of Wisconsin System, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee - Outright: $147,412

[Digital Humanities Advancement Grants]

Project Director: Anne Bonds; Derek Handley (co-project director)

Project Title: Developing a Digital Platform for the Mapping Racism and Resistance in Milwaukee County Project

Project Description: The development of a platform to map and visualize racial covenants in early twentieth-century Milwaukee.


Diverse and Resilient, Inc.  - Outright: $149,969

[Cultural and Community Resilience]

Project Director: Brice Smith

Project Title: House of History Project: Black LGBTQ+ Survivors and Thrivers in Milwaukee

Project Description: The recording of 15 new oral histories and updating of 11 existing oral histories about the Black LGBTQ+ experience in Milwaukee, including discussions of both the HIV/AIDS and COVID-19 pandemics, and the development of a documentary website to present the recordings.

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