Grant will be used for the remodel of the second floor of the museum

ROCKY TOP, TN (SPECIAL TO WLAF) – The Coal Creek Miners Museum is a recipient of a $50,000 grant for Capital Maintenance and Improvement from the State of Tennessee as administered through the Tennessee State Museum. The grant award will be used for HVAC and ADA-compliant restroom repairs on the second floor of the museum. 

The Tennessee General Assembly made available $5 million in funding from the 2023-2024 Appropriations Act, “for the sole purpose of providing grants to museums with a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization or affiliated with a governmental entity for capital maintenance and improvements.”

It was a highly competitive process. In total, the Tennessee State Museum received 170 applications, totaling $12.5M in funding requests for the $5M appropriation. The Museum made full or partial awards to 108 museums across the state, representing 58 counties.

“The Tennessee State Museum serves the State of Tennessee through history, art, and culture,” said Ashley Howell, Tennessee State Museum Executive Director. “There is incredible work being done throughout the state by our strong network of Tennessee museums and historic homes. This grant is an extension of how we can further support their efforts and the preservation of local and state history. We thank the Tennessee General Assembly for their support for Tennessee Museums.”

“The funding that will be provided through this grant will give us a jumpstart on remodeling the second floor of the museum,” said Tim Isbel, chairperson of the Coal Creek Miners Museum. “The HVAC and an ADA-compliant restroom are a very important component in the remodeling project that will expand capacity, allowing us to display a more extensive collection of artifacts and exhibits. This, in turn, enables us to offer a more comprehensive and immersive experience for visitors.”

The Capital Improvement and Maintenance grant had a minimum request amount of $5,000 and a maximum request amount of $100,000.  All projects must be completed by June 30, 2024.

The Coal Creek Miners Museum serves to preserve, honor, and promote the rich history, culture, and economic heritage of all aspects of coal mining and the unique story of the coal miners in Coal Creek, Tennessee, utilizing education and outreach to foster economic and community development.  The museum tells the story of mining in East Tennessee but more specifically the unique story Coal Creek, TN  featuring the Coal Creek War, a labor dispute between miners and mine owners revolving around the convict lease system. It also commemorates the Fraterville mine disaster and the Cross Mountain Mine Disaster, two tragic events that rank among the most devastating mine disasters in U.S. history.

About Tennessee State Museum

Celebrating its 86th Anniversary in 2023, the Tennessee State Museum, located on the corner of Rosa L Parks Blvd. and Jefferson Street at Bicentennial Capitol Mall State Park, is home to 13,000 years of Tennessee art and history. Through six permanent exhibitions titled Natural History, First Peoples, Forging a Nation, The Civil War and Reconstruction, Change and Challenge and Tennessee Transforms, the Museum takes visitors on a journey – through artifacts, films, interactive displays, events and educational and digital programing – from the state’s geological beginnings to the present day. Additional temporary exhibitions explore significant periods and individuals in history, along with art and cultural movements. The Museum is free and open to the public Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10 a.m. – 5 p.m. and Sundays from 1 p.m. – 5 p.m. For more information on exhibitions and events, please visit us here. (WLAF NEWS PUBLISHED – 12/06/2023-6AM-PHOTO COURTESY OF THE COAL MINERS MUSEUM)