Application deadline extended for We The People Bookshelf grants on “Becoming American”

Contact: Lainie Castle
Program Officer, Communications
For Immediate Release
January 17, 2005

Application deadline extended for We The People Bookshelf grants on “Becoming American”

CHICAGO - The National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the American Library Association (ALA) announced today that the January 17 deadline for the We the People Bookshelf on “Becoming American” has been extended to March 1, 2006.

Public and school (K-12) libraries are eligible to apply to receive one of 2,000 Bookshelf collections. A recent commitment from the McCormick Tribune Foundation doubled the number of available awards from 1,000 to 2,000.The We the People Bookshelf on “Becoming American” contains the following books, which were selected by NEH, in consultation with members of the Association for Library Service to Children (ALSC) and the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), divisions of ALA.

Kindergarten through 3rd Grade: The Lotus Seed by Sherry Garland; Watch the Stars Come Out by Riki Levinson; Grandfather's Journey by Allen Say

4th Grade through 6th Grade: Immigrant Kids by Russell Freedman; The People Could Fly: African Black Folktales by Virginia Hamilton; Rip Van Winkle by Washington Irving; In the Year of the Boar and Jackie Robinson by Betty Bao Lord

7th Grade through 8th Grade: Rifles for Watie by Harold Keith; The Glory Field by Walter Dean Myers; A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith; Dragonwings by Laurence Yep

9th Grade through 12th Grade: Death Comes for the Archbishop by Willa Cather; The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin edited by Louis P. Masur; Barrio Boy by Ernesto Galarza; Giants in the Earth: A Saga of the Prairie by Ole Edvart Rølvaag

In addition to these 15 selections, successful applicants also will receive three of the Bookshelf titles in Spanish, bookplates, bookmarks, posters, and programming and promotional ideas. Applications will be accepted online through March 1, 2006. For further details, including a link to guidelines and the application, visit

The “Becoming American” Bookshelf is part of NEH’s We the People initiative, which supports projects that strengthen the teaching, study, and understanding of American history and culture. Libraries that receive a Bookshelf are required to organize programs that introduce the books and the "Becoming American" theme to the library's students, young patrons, or to intergenerational audiences. Programs must take place between May 1, 2006 and May 31, 2007.

Questions about the We the People Bookshelf should be directed to the ALA Public Programs Office at (800) 545-2433 ext. 5045 or, or to the NEH at (202) 606-8337 or Hearing-impaired applicants can contact NEH via TDD at 1-866-372-2930.

The ALA Public Programs Office fosters cultural programming by libraries of all types. Established in 1990, the office helps thousands of libraries nationwide develop and host programs that encourage dialogue among community members and establish libraries as cultural centers in their communities.

Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports learning in history, literature, philosophy and other areas of the humanities. NEH grants enrich classroom learning, create and preserve knowledge and bring ideas to life through public television, radio, new technologies exhibitions and programs in libraries, museums and other community places.

The McCormick Tribune Foundation is a charitable grant making organization that supports work in journalism, communities, citizenship, and education. For more information, visit