Arizona Humanities

FLORENCE — The Pinal County Historical Society Museum has received $10,000 in federal funding to support projects at risk because of lost revenue during the pandemic.

The funding is from Arizona Humanities through the National Endowment for the Humanities. NEH received $75 million in CARES Act supplemental funding to distribute as emergency relief to cultural institutions affected by the coronavirus pandemic.

In Florence, the funds will support a computer hardware and software upgrade. The museum’s current computers are outdated and unsupported. The new equipment will allow the museum to increase its digital offerings, including digitizing some of its historic photographs.

“I am thrilled that PCHS Museum was one of 10 organizations in Arizona selected in the first round of grant awards,” Executive Director Stephanie Joyner said in a news release. “I am looking forward to expanding our digital offerings such as virtual programming to preserve and share Florence’s rich history.”

Additionally, Arizona Humanities funding will offset the cost for a new flat file to store the museum’s historic maps collection and cover essential operating expenses. PCHS Museum solely relies on income from admissions, gift shop sales, memberships and donations, all of which were significantly impacted by COVID-19 and the required museum closure.

PCHS Museum, 715 S. Main St., is a small, nonprofit history museum that celebrates the people and cultures in Florence and in the surrounding towns in Pinal County from prehistoric times to the 1950s. The museum offers educational programming and events, in addition to permanent and rotating displays to preserve the history in the region for 5,000 visitors annually. Learn more at facebook.com/pchsmuseum1 and pinalcountyhistoricalmuseum.org.

Arizona Humanities is a statewide 501©(3) nonprofit organization and the Arizona affiliate of the National Endowment of the Humanities. Since 1973, Arizona Humanities has supported public programs that promote understanding of the human experiences with cultural, educational and nonprofit organizations across Arizona.

The National Endowment for the Humanities is an independent federal agency created in 1965. It is one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the United States. NEH supports research, education, preservation and public programs in the humanities.

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Mark Cowling is the county reporter for PinalCentral and covers the town of Florence, San Tan Valley and the surrounding area. He can be reached at mcowling@pinalcentral.com.

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