History Nebraska has announced the recipients of the Rural Nebraska Historic Preservation (RNHP) grant, which assists owners of National Register of Historic Places listed properties in Nebraska communities with populations under 30,000. A total of $328,000 was awarded to six communities for various historic preservation projects through the grant administered by the Nebraska State Historic Preservation Office with funding provided by the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization grant.
Projects in Fort Calhoun, Mason City, Niobrara, Red Cloud, Schuyler, and Wauneta were selected as grant recipients. The six projects were chosen from 51 qualifying applications. “Selecting our recipients was an extremely challenging process,” says program coordinator Betty Gillespie. “This program has shown that historic preservation is a valued endeavor and opportunities for it are needed in both large and small communities across Nebraska.”
In Fort Calhoun, the grant will support repairs and accessibility construction to the porch of the Alfred H. and Sarah Frahm House.
In Mason City, funds will be used to offset the cost of repair and replacement of the roof of Mason City School.
In Niobrara, the funds will support the repair and replacement of degrading windows of the Ponca Tribe Self-Help Community Building and Caretaker’s Cottage.
In Red Cloud, the grant will support the repair and restoration of the front porch and trim of the J.L. Miner House.
In Schuyler, funds will subsidize numerous restoration projects of the Oak Ballroom, including HVAC replacement, roof replacement, as well as interior and exterior repairs.
In Wauneta, the grant will be used towards a full roof replacement for Wauneta Roller Mills.
With the selection process complete, grant agreements will be drafted and post-award presentations planned. Once the agreements are finalized, projects may begin seeking bids and start their projects. Progress reports will be provided every other month with project completion dated July 2025. “We are excited to work with the selected applicants and bring needed historic preservation support to their communities,” says Gillespie.
Nebraska was among eleven other applicants to receive the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grants this year and the only State Historic Preservation Office to receive such funding in this round. A total of $7.275 million was awarded nationwide to support the preservation of historic buildings in rural communities. Now in its fourth year, the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grants are named for a former executive director of the Preservation Trust of Vermont.
Congress appropriates funding for various programs, including the Paul Bruhn Revitalization Grant, through the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF). The HPF uses revenue from federal oil leases on the Outer Continental Shelf to assist preservation projects in all states, territories, and many tribal lands. For more information about the Paul Bruhn Revitalization Grant, visit https://go.nps.gov/revitalization.