Make Room For History

Community Archive & Research Center Donations

The Tri-Cities rich history tells our story of how we became this wonderful place. Having space to preserve artifacts of our continuously growing history will enable future generations to learn about the Tri-Cities. This new building will allow that to happen.” —Tom & Gail Ringelberg, museum members

Make Room For History

“It’s all about living history. When you can see, feel, touch, and smell artifacts, the difference between a dotted line and a solid line no longer exists because the spaces are filled.” —Rick Berens, former museum Board President

As much as the Akeley building is the physical image of the museum, what the public doesn’t see is every bit or even more important. The long term viability of the institution will depend on the proper storage, control, and preservation of its artifacts. An upgraded, more modern facility will help ensure the proper management of the museum’s collection.” —Dennis Swartout, former museum Director

The Need:

•The Tri-Cities Historical Museum owns more than 60,000 artifacts, donated by area citizens since our founding in 1959.

• Currently obstacles limit proper storage, preservation, accessibility, and availability to the public.

• Lack of space and less than ideal conditions may potentially harm the artifacts, paper archives, and artwork.

•The museum's warehouse, which houses three­ dimensional and oversized artifacts, is in need of a new HVAC and climate-control environment.

• Consolidation  of collection storage on one campus would allow public access and one-on-one interaction with specialized museum staff.

• The archives will have the protection of a dry fire suppression system.

How we will use it:

For housing the museum art, textile, photographic, and archive collections.  We will create a space that supports research, enhances public access, and promotes use of artifacts that embody the rich heritage of our area.

This new Community Archive & Research Center will be 5,000 sq. ft., doubling existing collections space. This is a masonry building, with a public access area, computer stations for digital access to photo and collection archives, conservation room, garage for the LaFrance firetruck, and an art storage system for the artwork and textile collection.

Collaborations may be possible with Ottawa County, Loutit District Library, and the City of Grand Haven for storage of their archival collections.

This project will ensure the collection becomes a searchable resource, is protected from damage, and is properly kept for posterity:

•Move archives to a new, larger storage space with museum-quality storage furniture, archival boxes and folders; with the protection of a dry fire suppression system.

•Create an online/on-site resource center for public access;

•Create a conservation lab for artifacts;

•Install technology for scholarly research;

•Allow for museum-quality storage of the art collection.

Area residents, educators, students, historians, and universities will enjoy monitored access to the collections as a resource to a degree that is just not possible today.

When do we start:

Plans are in the works for the renovation and enhancements for both collections buildings to be completed in spring, 2016. The museum quality archival shelving and art storage is supported by a grant from the MICHIGAN COUNCIL FOR ARTS AND CULTURAL AFFAIRS. This is an opportunity to show how important the preservation of collections is for our community.

We are proud to be your museum and thank you in advance for your generosity. From our humble beginnings as a volunteer-based historical society, we have grown and expanded to support the strong sense of history and place that runs through our area.

With the support of our members and benefactors, visitors and residents are rewarded by the great work of our mission to preserve, display, and interpret our shared history.

Make Room For History - Brochure & Donation form

Yes! I would like to make a donation in the amount of $             to be part of this important project and help maintain the collections and archives of our history for future generations. Donations
are eligible as tax deductions; the Tri-Cities Historical Museum is recognized by the IRS as a 501(c)(3) non­profit organization.


Address: __                                                                                  City:                     _ State:    Zip:

For donations of $100 and greater, your name will be displayed on-site to recognize your generosity.

Indicate below how you would like your recognition to appear.


Displayed Name (Maximum 25 characters)

Select a category:

__ Individual or Family                __ Business         ___ In Memoriam

All other donation amounts are also appreciated!

__ Gift by Check Payable to: Tri-Cities Historical Museum
     200 Washington Ave., Grand Haven, MI  49417

Memo: Community Archive & Research Center

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