Contact:

Margaret Anne Tockarshewsky, Executive Director, New Haven Museum

203-562-4183, ext. 120, matockarshewsky@newhavenmuseum.org

Julie Winkel, Media Specialist,                                                                                                             

203-815-0800, jwinkel@live.com         

 

New Haven Museum Receives Community Investment Fund Grant

New Haven, Conn. (June 19, 2024) –Connecticut’s Community Investment Fund (CIF) 2030 Board will award the New Haven Museum (NHM) a $350K grant to bolster community engagement, create a master plan, and design renovations  for both its Whitney Avenue home and the historic Pardee-Morris House, which the museum has owned and operated seasonally since 1918. The funding was approved by the State Bond Commission at its June 9, 2024, meeting.

The funds will be used to reimagine the New Haven Museum’s 29,000-square-foot, nearly century-old building at 114 Whitney Ave. to create a 21st-century museum experience. The effort will entail optimized interior spaces, accessibility enhancements, technology, and structural and mechanical building upgrades. The Pardee-Morris House, at 325 Lighthouse Road, requires interior and exterior restoration work. A comprehensive master plan will be developed for both sites incorporating the further assessment of conditions.  

The Museum will also embark on extensive community outreach and engagement efforts to better develop educational, exhibit, collection, and programmatic needs and spaces for both sites.  The Museum and Pardee-Morris House draw some 10,000 visitors annually, including over 1,700 local schoolchildren. The Museum’s Education Department provides programs and educational outreach to young people and adults in the surrounding community.

New Haven Museum board members and staff are grateful to the CIF Board, New Haven’s legislative delegation, and Governor Ned Lamont for the substantial grant and continued support of the museum and its mission. “We’re deeply grateful to Senate President Pro Tempore Martin Looney and his fellow legislators and committee members and CIF staff for recognizing the importance and necessity of such funding to the Museum,” says NHM Executive Director Margaret Anne Tockarshewsky. “This grant will allow us to re-imagine the Pardee-Morris House interior and exterior in an historically appropriate and creative way, and the museum building to support more educational, programmatic and community usage.”

Noting the importance of CIF grants, Senator Looney says, “There is a historical significance to the Pardee-Morris House that highlights New Haven’s history dating back to the American Revolution, and the New Haven Museum is a repository of so many items that are pivotal in understanding New Haven’s nearly 400 years of history. I was happy to recommend this project for approval by the Community Investment Fund and I’m pleased to see its passage by the State Bond Commission.” 

Tockarshewsky also credits the stalwart support of State Representative Alphonse Paolillo, Jr., the representative in the Morris Cove area of New Haven. “This funding of $350,000 for the New Haven Museum Master Plan is excellent news for the City of New Haven,” said Paolillo. “The positive impact is wide-ranging from the residents of New Haven and Connecticut who will benefit from outstanding displays and programming put together by the museum, but also the economic activity that it will help bring in that helps support our local economy and businesses.”

Salvatore E. DeCola, alder of Ward 18, in which Pardee-Morris House is located, points out that comprehensive master plans are essential in identifying the necessary capital improvements and embarking on an extensive community outreach and engagement effort to better develop the Museum’s educational, exhibit, collection and programmatic needs and spaces. He notes that the improvements and the Museum’s extended outreach to current and future community partners will help underserved and marginalized communities. “There are few social services and cultural offerings available to residents in Morris Cove,” he says. “It would be wonderful to extend the Pardee-Morris House season beyond the summer.” 

Salvatore Punzo, 17th Ward alder, adds that the proposed improvements are consistent with the City’s  plan of conservation and development, and says, “We especially value the Pardee-Morris House in the East Shore. It is a significant community partner with its seasonal programs, and with renovations, it can broaden its community reach with more programs, activities, exhibits and concerts.” 

CIF funding is designed to foster economic development in historically underserved communities, providing up to $875 million to municipalities, not-for-profit organizations and community development corporations. 

NHM staff and board members are deeply grateful to all the other members of the New Haven delegation for supporting the award: Senator Gary Winfield; Representative Roland Lemar; Representative Toni Walker; Representative Patricia A. Dillon; Representative Juan Candelaria and Representative Robyn A. Porter. 

About the New Haven Museum

The New Haven Museum has been collecting, preserving and interpreting the history and heritage of Greater New Haven since its inception as the New Haven Colony Historical Society in 1862. Located in downtown New Haven at 114 Whitney Avenue, the Museum brings more than 375 years of New Haven history to life through its collections, exhibitions, programs and outreach. As a designated Blue Star Museum, the New Haven Museum offers the nation’s active-duty military personnel and their families, including National Guard and Reserve, free admission from Memorial Day through Labor Day. For more information visit www.newhavenmuseum.org or Facebook.com/NewHavenMuseum or call 203-562-4183.

About the Pardee-Morris House

Located at 325 Lighthouse Road, in New Haven, the Pardee-Morris House dates from about 1780, and is listed on the State and National Register of Historic Places. Built by Amos Morris around 1750, the house was burned by the British during their raid on New Haven in 1779 and rebuilt and expanded by the Morris family. In 1918, William S. Pardee, a descendant of the Morris family, willed the property to the New Haven Colony Historical Society, today the New Haven Museum.

Donate

Logo for: CT Humanities Logo for: Preservation Connecticut Logo for: CT Humanities Logo for: The 1772 Foundation Logo for: Blue Star Museums Logo for: Howard Gilman Foundation Logo for: United Illuminating Lighting Up the Arts Logo for: Connecticut Freedom Trail Logo for: WSHU Public Radio