Museum PR Announcements News and Information

101 Museums to Participate in Conservation Assessment Program

The Conservation Assessment Program (CAP), which assists small museums in providing appropriate care for endangered collections, has announced this year’s participating museums. In 2011, 101 museums in 36 states and Puerto Rico will have the condition of their collections and historic structures assessed. CAP is administered by Heritage Preservation and funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services through its National Leadership Grants program.

The wide array of 2011 recipients includes the Ballard Institute and Museum of Puppetry at the University of Connecticut in Storrs, Connecticut; the Fernbank Museum of Natural History in Atlanta, Georgia; Waikiki Aquarium in Honolulu, Hawaii; the Illinois Holocaust Museum and Education Center in Skokie, Illinois; and the Comanche National Museum and Cultural Center in Lawton, Oklahoma. To view the complete list of 2011 CAP participants, visit

“Museums offer us a window to ourselves, our communities, and our planet,” said Susan Hildreth, Director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. “By caring for over 198 million artifacts, America’s small museums preserve the stories of people, places, and cultures. I am proud that the IMLS partnership with Heritage Preservation, through the Conservation Assessment Program, provides museums with the information they need to preserve their collections for generations to come.”

CAP helps small to mid-sized museums of all types, from art museums to zoos, obtain general assessments of the condition of their collections, environment, and historic buildings. Following an on-site assessment, the museum receives a report recommending priorities to improve collections care. This report assists museums in educating staff and board members on conservation practices, creating long-range and emergency plans, and raising funds to improve the care of their collections.

Since 1990, 2,600 museums have participated in CAP, including museums in all 50 states and the U. S. territories of the District of Columbia, U.S. Virgin Islands, Northern Mariana Islands, Republic of Palau, and Puerto Rico. As a result of Heritage Preservation’s new three-year cooperative agreement with IMLS, CAP will provide additional online resources and networking for its community of small museums and assessors.

“For more than twenty years, participating museums have used CAP to demonstrate to private, local, state, and federal funding sources that support of collections care is an excellent tool for engaging new audiences, contributing to a museum’s mission to promote learning and, thereby, ensuring that the museum’s collections will be available for the future,” said Lawrence L. Reger, President of Heritage Preservation.

The 2012 CAP application will be available on Heritage Preservation’s Web site,, on Monday, October 3, 2011. Heritage Preservation evaluates CAP applications in the order in which they are received, so museums are encouraged to submit their completed applications as soon as possible. The postmark deadline for applications is December 1, 2011. To be added to the CAP application mailing list or for more information, call 202-233-0800 or e-mail [email protected]

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