The Maryland Museums Association is a volunteer-managed alliance of institutions that collect, hold, interpret, and protect the material and cultural heritage of the Free State. We advocate for state museum funding, equity in the profession, and authentic interpretation of our shared histories in service of increased cultural understanding.
Museum Assistance Program
In October 2023, the Maryland Museums Association sent the following letter to Gov. Wes Moore requesting the inclusion of $5M for the Museum Assistance Program in the FY25 operating budget. The letter was co-signed by Maryland Center for History and Culture, Maryland Humanities, and Preservation Maryland with support from Allegany Museum, B&O Railroad Museum, Baltimore Museum of Industry, Banneker-Douglass Museum, Catoctin Furnace Historical Society, Chesapeake Bay Maritine Museum, Historic Annapolis, Maryland-National Capital Parks & Planning Commission, The Peale, Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture, and St. Mary's County Museums.
Our Partners in Advocacy
Allegany Museum (Allegany County) • B&O Railroad Museum (Baltimore City) • Baltimore Museum of Industry (Baltimore City) • Banneker-Douglass Museum (Anne Arundel County) • Catoctin Furnace Historical Society (Frederick County) • Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum (Talbot County) • Historic Annapolis (Anne Arundel County) • Julia A. Purnell Museum (Worchester County) • Maryland-National Capital Parks & Planning Commission (Prince George's and Montgomery Counties)• Montgomery History (Montgomery County) • The Peale: Baltimore’s Community Museum (Baltimore City) • Reginald F. Lewis Museum of Maryland African American History and Culture (Baltimore City) • St. Mary's County Museums (St. Mary's County)
Museum Assistance Program Fast Facts
Museum Funding Reports
Preservation, Survey, and Museum Funding Needs (Joint Chairman's Report (JCR), 2016)
For many years, Maryland was a national leader in providing support for the preservation and interpretation of our irreplaceable heritage. Historic preservation and history museum assistance programs were supported by the Maryland Historical Trust Grant Fund, a continuing, non-lapsing special fund. Despite demonstrated demand for these programs, appropriations to the MHT Grant Fund were suspended beginning in fiscal year 2012.
At the close of the 2016 session of the Maryland General Assembly, the Chairmen of the Senate Budget and Taxation Committee and House Appropriations Committee directed MHT to work with partners to evaluate the state of its historic preservation and museum grant programs. The following report addresses specific issues identified by legislators including need and demand for this type of State support, funding options, staff capacity to administer these programs, and the experience of other states.
As this report demonstrates, the unmet needs of the state’s historic preservation and history museum community are substantial. Threats to our tangible and intangible cultural heritage continue to grow. State and federal sources of funding for cultural resource preservation have all but disappeared, leaving our local government and private sector partners with few options.
PreserveMaryland: The Role of Museums and the Museum Assistance Program (2014)
The Maryland Historical Trust (MHT) Museum Assistance Program served the state’s historical and cultural museums by providing grants, technical assistance and networking opportunities from 1999 to 2011, with the cessation of grant funding.
In September 2013, MHT launched a formal needs assessment. This paper is the culmination of the needs assessment process, which opened with a statewide survey. Focus groups brought together museum representatives to review the survey’s findings and to offer perspectives on future programming.
Statewide Preservation Plan
PreserveMaryland II is the current statewide preservation plan. It is a five-year guidance document for government agencies, non-profit advocates and others involved in historic preservation, archaeology and cultural heritage in Maryland.
Throughout Summer 2023, the Maryland Historical Trust hosted public meetings to solicit feedback about goals and recommended actions for new statewide preservation plan (2023-2031) – an eight-year guidance document for government agencies, non-profit advocates, and others involved in historic preservation, archaeology and cultural heritage.
MMA co-hosted a museum stakeholder listening session and conducted a museum-specific survey to help inform the new plan. For more information contact MHT.