SDHC Awards $30K in Grants for Humanities Programs

Lilita Zvejnieks Hardes presents during a "Feed Your Mind" event at the Yankton Historical Society's Mead Cultural Education Center. The historical society offers many events and exhibits for patrons and was recently awarded an SDHC grant to add all-inclusive narrative to its Lewis and Clark Expedition exhibit.

Programs to Take Place After Dec. 1

From history conferences to indigenous culture lessons, newly-awarded South Dakota Humanities Council grants support a variety of projects. SDHC recently approved five such grants, distributing $30,000 to organizations around the state who will use the funds to provide South Dakotans with noteworthy humanities programs.

Successful applicants submit projects led by humanities professionals and featuring humanities as a central focus of their program, event, or research project. Grant requests for more than $2,000 are considered twice a year. The next deadline for applications is Feb. 28, 2022. SDHC considers requests for $2,000 or less on a rolling basis, awarding grants as funding permits.


  • The University of South Dakota Department of English in Vermillion was awarded $6,425 for the 29th Northern Plains Conference on Early British Literature, which will be held April 21-23 at Muenster University Center. The annual regional conference, featuring presentations, discussions, and social gatherings, is dedicated to the study of English literature from the Medieval through the Romantic periods. It offers a unique opportunity within the field of English studies to create and foster connections across regional higher-ed institutions, educate and inform students on the current state of studies in early British literature, and apprise the public of the valuable humanities work being conducted at their local universities.

  • Yankton County Historical Society, Inc. in Yankton received $8,320 to add an all-inclusive narrative to the existing Lewis and Clark Expedition exhibit currently on display at the Mead Cultural Education Center in Yankton. Grant funds will be used to pay scholar fees for cultural content discussions and create two banners for the existing exhibit. These banners will focus on the history and culture of the Oceti Sakowin and Ihanktonwan Native Nation prior to and during the Lewis and Clark Expedition. Additional information will be collected to be included in an audio tour script of the exhibit. The public event is scheduled for Sept. 10.

  • The South Dakota Historical Foundation in Pierre was awarded $9,900 for the 2022 South Dakota State Historical Society Annual History Conference April 22-23 at the Ramkota Hotel in Pierre. The event features a stellar line-up of speakers to enlighten the audience on the topic "Fighting the Good War: South Dakotans in World War Two. The conference will also feature programming on veterans' oral histories. Conference attendees will have an opportunity to mingle at the Friday night reception and following the final Saturday session. The entire conference will be hybrid: it will be available for in-person attendance as well as live-streamed for those who cannot attend in person.

  • The American Indian Student Center at South Dakota State University in Brookings was awarded $4,656 for The Cultural Philosophy of the Lakota Bow and Arrow program featuring Joseph Marshall III. Marshall III, in collaboration with the American Indian Student Center at South Dakota State University, will discuss and demonstrate the cultural philosophy of the Lakota bow and arrow with American Indian students and Wokini scholars. The public presentation, held at SDSU's Volstorff Ballroom and via Zoom Apr. 29 at 7 pm, will cover craftsmanship as well as the philosophical and spiritual aspects of the process.

  • South Dakota Discovery Center in Pierre was awarded $825 for Lessons from the Universe, a special week-long event Dec. 10-18 that will coincide with NASA's launch of the Webb Space Telescope. Lessons from the Universe will begin with a production of the play Silent Sky by Lauren Gunderson and will include special events for families, including star shows and STEAM-inspired activities such as creating art from telescope data.

Learn More About SDHC Grants

To read more about the South Dakota Humanities Council's grant application process and to apply, please visit