Visiting Humanities Scholar Program at Illinois College

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Visiting Humanities Scholar Program

Illinois College, Jacksonville Illinois

Preserve+Share+Produce Humanities Initiative


Illinois College announces the availability of two research grants of $1,300 for Visiting Humanities Scholars who conduct research in the College’s Khalaf Al Habtoor Archives or Paul Findley Congressional Museum in 2017. Research topics are open, but researchers must be from a humanities discipline or employ a humanistic approach.


Founded in 1829, Illinois College was the first college in the state to conduct classes and grant a baccalaureate degree, and its archival collections are representative of that history. The Khalaf Al Habtoor Archives, however, are new and largely untapped. Illinois College created this new storage and research space within Illinois College’s Schewe Library in 2014 through the support of an NEH Challenge Grant, the Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor Foundation, and other foundations and individuals.


Illinois College also maintains the Paul A. Findley Congressional Office Museum, which is one of just three Congressional Office replicas in the nation. Congressman Findley is an alumnus of Illinois College, and is one of 21 Illinois College alumni who have served in the U.S. Congress. Findley, who resides in Jacksonville, IL, served in Congress from 1960 to 1982 and was active in issues related to peace (particularly in the Middle East), agriculture, and food security.


Examples of the holdings at Illinois College include:

  • Photographs, audio-visual materials, and artifacts.

  • The records for Sorosis, a local women’s literary society (1869-present), approximately 10 linear feet, that emphasizes women’s activism and education.

  • The papers of Congressman Paul Findley (1921-present), approximately 60 linear feet, including family records, correspondence, and Congressional records.

  • Collections related to prominent thinkers of the nineteenth century. For example, Edward Beecher served as the first president from 1830-1844. Collections include Beecher’s unpublished novel titled Cornelia, and an unpublished biography by his brother Charles Beecher.


To Apply:


Applicants should send the following:

  • Cover letter

  • CV or resume

  • Project description of no more than 750 words. Descriptions should mention specific collections or materials the Visiting Scholar plans to use, and a timeline describing the length and timing of the residence


Applications should be sent electronically as one PDF or Word Document to Samantha

Sauer, Archivist/Curator, at by January 30, 2017. Please use the subject line “Visiting Humanities Scholar Application.” Applicants will be notified of their application’s status by March 1, 2017.


Visiting Humanities Scholars may begin their residence as early as May 1, 2017 and must complete their residence by December 1, 2017. Scholars will receive a stipend of $1,300 following their residence. The stipend is contingent upon the scholar’s submittal of a final report summarizing the research experience, in a format approved by Illinois College, no later than December 15, 2017.


This endowed program is funded by an NEH Challenge Grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities and Illinois College donors. The Visiting Humanities  Scholar program will be offered again in 2019.


About Illinois College


Illinois College is a residential, private liberal arts college located in historic Jacksonville, Illinois, 70 miles northeast of Saint Louis, Missouri, and 30 miles west of Springfield, the Illinois state capitol. True to its founding vision in 1829, Illinois College is a community committed to the highest standards of scholarship and integrity in the liberal arts. Illinois College promotes academic freedom, equality of opportunity, and human dignity through an increasingly diverse student population, currently comprised of 26 percent underrepresented students. Illinois College is building an international reputation for inspiring achievement and empowering students to make a difference in the world. We are preparing young people for productive, satisfying, and meaningful lives.


About the National Endowment for the Humanities


“The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) is an independent federal agency created in 1965. It is one of the largest funders of humanities programs in the United States.”



"The term 'humanities' includes, but is not limited to, the study and interpretation of the following: language, both modern and classical; linguistics; literature; history; jurisprudence; philosophy; archaeology; comparative religion; ethics; the history, criticism and theory of the arts; those aspects of social sciences which have humanistic content and employ humanistic methods; and the study and application of the humanities to the human environment with particular attention to reflecting our diverse heritage, traditions, and history and to the relevance of the humanities to the current conditions of national life."

--National Foundation on the Arts and the Humanities Act, 1965, as amended