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Historical Society captures Oishei grant

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Photo by Mark Johannesen/Printing Prep
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A view of the Historical Society's Pioneer Gallery, which was refurbished with support from the Oishei Foundation in 2009-2010

By Eileen Buckley

Buffalo, NY – The Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society has been awarded a grant from the John R. Oishei Foundation.

The grant totals $151,200 and will be distributed over the next two years, 2011-2012.

In a letter to the Historical Society, Robert D. Gioia, president of the Oishei Foundation, noted that "the [Oishei] Directors [are] impressed with the progress that has been made [at the Historical Society] to date, and the evidence of new energy within the institution."

The Historical Society said its strategic plan includes exactly those goals: to reinvigorate itself both physically and through varied visitor experiences.

The Society, which in 2012 will celebrate the 150th anniversary of the formation of its governing body, was previously granted funds from the Oishei Foundation to refurbish its Pioneer Life Gallery (2009-2010). The upgrades were revealed in October, 2010.

"The announcement of these new funds to create a dynamic Native American gallery, and also to support cataloguing work critical to collections care, is a both a profound symbol and a literal declaration of the community's support for and belief in the Historical Society," said Melissa N. Brown, Historical Society executive director. "We thank the Oishei Foundation, and pledge to uphold its commitment to us with our own commitment to the people and stories of the Buffalo and Erie County region."