Signage & Marker Grants

The SC American Revolution Sestercentennial Commission (SC250) offers Competitive Grants in the following levels Patriot Grants (up to $15,000), Major Grants ($15,001 to $125,000), and Premier Project Grants ($125,001+).

Patriot Grants are reviewed monthly with a deadline on the first business day of each month at 3:00 P.M. Major Grants are reviewed quarterly. Premier Grants’ deadlines are also quarterly and will go through two rounds of review including a presentation to the full Commission or Executive Committee.

One of the available grant types is the Signage & Marker Grant. The SC American Revolution Sestercentennial Commission (SC250) believes that not only do interpretive signs, directional signage, and markers recognize the significance of SC people, places, and ideas in the American Revolution; these signs also aid the cultural tourism that will be enhanced by 250th anniversary marketing and curiosity.


Grant Requirements:

  • All Projects should feature significant American Revolution Era people, places, events, or ideas particularly in their connection to SC.
  • Interpretive materials require the highest standards of scholarship, balance, and documentation.
  • All locations must be verified through research and archaeology.
  • The Project Sponsor will supply its proposed Budget and Timeline to completion
  • The research must cite the SC American Revolution Sestercentennial Commission.
  • All signage applications must include proof of property ownership, lease, or easement agreement for the signage location.
  • All signage must follow SC Dept. of Transportation regulations.
  • All new signage should be listed with ArchSite and SC Institute for Archaeology & Anthropology.
  • Project Sponsor shall provide all project management.
  • During the agreement period (through 2033) the Project Sponsor must ensure that the terms of the agreement are kept, that maintenance will be performed on a regular basis signage remain available to the public. During the project agreement period the Project Sponsor may not transfer the rights, privilege, or obligations of the site without approved from SC250.
  • Post Completion Responsibilities: Upon notification from the Project Sponsor through a final report, SC250 will be responsible for making a site inspection of the site prior to final grant payment. 
  • In the event that any portion of this agreement is applied to leased property, the Project Sponsor must provide SC250 with a copy an adequate lease to the subject  property  prior  to  the first billing request.  If the lease is terminated for any reason prior to the expiration date of this agreement, the Project Sponsor agrees to relocate any improvements developed under this agreement to another site which would be open for public use.  Any and all expenses for real estate, relocation and/or other expenses will be borne by the Project Sponsor.
  • Any interpretive panels:
    • must be designed in collaboration with SC250 and the SC Battleground Preservation Trust signage and consistent with these entities other signage. Final approval from SC250 is required before production.
    • should feature significant local Revolutionary Era people, places, events, or ideas.
    • should be engaging and graphically rich.
    • must be accurate, sources fully documented, or called “tradition” or “legend”.
    • must display SC250th Commission’s and SC Liberty Trail’s logos.
    • use only images, wording, design, and layout to which the grantee has permanent rights.
    • In addition to standard local histories, applicants are encouraged to also tell their Revolutionary Era stories from non-traditional points of view, such as (but not limited to) Loyalist – Women – Children – enslaved and free African Americans – Native Americans.
  • Please note that grant approval from SC250 does not include guaranteed State Marker program nor the National Register of Historic Places acceptance as SC Department of Archives & History (SCDAH) runs both of those programs separately. However, this grant can be used to pay fees, manufacturing, and installation of a state marker if approved through the SCDAH program.
  • Also, note that this program does not guarantee being listed on the Liberty Trail as that is a separate program run by the SC Battleground Preservation Trust (SCBPT) and the American Battlefield Trust. However, this grant could potentially be used for creating signage at a location to help prepare a site for being added to the Liberty Trail if approved by SCBPT.
  • Signage location should be “visitable” by the public at the completion of project (or as part of plan for the site).

Potential American Revolution in SC Projects could include, but are not limited to:

  • Restoring or adding wayfinding signage for visitable site.
  • Restoring or installing interpretive signs on a Revolutionary Era site.
  • Marking 18th century roads.
  • Restoring or adding historic markers.

Have another project that you think is pertinent but is not listed above? Contact the SC250 office for clarification 803-898-3392.

Who Is Eligible:

Official County 250 Committees, County Governments, Municipal Governments, Tribes, Museums, Historical Societies, Visitor Centers, Chambers of Commerce, Universities/Colleges, Non-Profit Organizations, Other SC Organizations. Please note that County and Municipal Governments may designate third-party recipients (i.e. non-profit organizations) to receive grants provided that the local government applies on their behalf and the Chief Elected Official of the local government signs the application. All applicants and signage locations must be located in SC.

How To Apply:

Apply through the Discover SC Web Grant program making sure to include the following checklist:

  • Register with the Discover SC Web Grant program - Please note this program manages all SCPRT and SC250 Grants. Pro Tip: When completing registration make sure to select SC250 - SC American Revolution Sestercentennial Commission under Program Area of Interest.
  • Under Funding Opportunities make sure to select the correct grant - Agency: SC American Revolution Sestercentennial Commission Title: SC American Revolution Patriot Grants (or Major or Premier)
  • General Information Form
  • Cover Sheet Form
    • Make sure to select Signage & Marker Grant under Grant Type.
  • Grant Narrative including Estimated Timeline & Anticipated Outcomes / Deliverables
  • Assurances & Certifications
  • Support Materials (*Required)
    • Contact Spreadsheet Click Here for a Sample Spreadsheet
      • Project Sponsor staff/members who would like to be added to SC250 enewsletter, etc.
      • VIPs to keep in the loop (Local Media, Elected Officials, Volunteers, Donors, etc.)
    • Fiscal Agent Documentation*
      • Fiscal Agent’s W-9 (make sure it is signed)
      • Fiscal Agent’s adopted budget for the current fiscal year
      • Fiscal Agent’s operating financial statement for last fiscal year
        • If the Fiscal Agent has just been established, some documentation to that fact
    • If the applicant or fiscal agent is a Non-Profit, we also need the following documentation:*
      • IRS 501c3 letter or 501c6 letter (not EIN letter but non-profit designation letter)
      • Secretary of State Annual Charity Registration letter (make sure it is not expired)
      • List of Board members
      • Mission of Non-profit
    • Letter of Support from your local SC County 250 Committee
      • SC250 would like to ensure that your County 250 group is in the loop when you are applying. We get more done together! Click Here for a list of contacts for the local county committees. Don't see your county contact? Reach out to hhawkins@southcarolina250.com.
      • If you are a County 250 Committee, you can skip this attachment.
      • If you are not located in SC but are working on American Revolution in SC material, upload a document that states such.
    • Documentation of land ownership, lease, easement, or memorandum of understanding with landowner.*
    • Any documents describing signage or location.
      • If completed, please include: final verbiage, design of sign (historic marker or interpretive sign or directional sign), location.
      • If determined, information on peer reviewer and/or historian contributing to verbiage.
      • If determined, photos of location, site map of property with County Map #, GIS Shapemap of property, etc.
      • If these items are not ready, know that they must be submitted to and approved by SC250 prior to ordering. And, these items will be required in the final report.
    • Any other documents that support your request. For example: if planning on using grant funds to pay a consultant, submit resume and/or sample works of consultant if already selected / REQUEST FOR PROPOSAL (RFP) if not.
  • Grant Application Budget
    • Eligible Costs:
      • Cost of legal advertisement in newspapers for the purposes of procurement or notice of public meetings
      • Professional “In-House” labor for the development of plans, not to exceed 20% of total project cost without prior SC250 approval
      • Historic Interpretive writing and research fees and peer review of signage verbiage
      • Professional map creation
      • Graphic design of signage
      • Royalty fees for image usage
      • Architectural/Historical/Engineering/Construction Management fees. The total of which may not exceed 12% of the total project cost without prior SC250 approval.
      • Site improvements including clearing, grading, etc. in preparation for the installation of signage
      • Signage production & installation costs for the site (both interpretive and directional or safety oriented)
      • Building materials, supplies, and specialty materials for construction
    • Not Eligible:
      • Please note that permit costs associated with construction are not eligible. Any construction or maintenance equipment and tools are not eligible.
    • Budget Best Practices:
      • Not all budget categories may be compatible with your grant type. Feel free to skip a section. For example: we do not expect to see land acquisition in the County 250 Organizing Grants.
      • If the grant request amount is part of a larger budget, please only include SC250 funding requests in each breakdown section.
      • Make sure to not exceed the total amount available for this grant type in the breakdown SC250 request sections. This up to amount is listed in the Amount section below.
      • The total budget could be larger if you have additional funding from other sources. If there are any additional funds in your total budget, document them in the Cost Share / Matching Funds section.)
      • Does your grant require a match? Checking out the Match or Cost Share Required section below.
      • If your grant does require a match, remember that the percentage is part of the total budget not 20% or 50% of your ask.
      • In-kind match can be documented to show support, however, it cannot be used in the formal match amount.
      • Personnel refers to staffing, while contractual refer to any person you are hiring for a specific task.
      • Administrative staffing should represent no more than 20% of the budget request.
      • Feel free to contact SC250 with questions at hhawkins@southcarolina250.com.
  • Applicants are encouraged to submit early and/or contact SC250 to discuss.

Amount:

Based on grant level. However, most Signage & Marker Grants are up to $10,000* / Project Sponsor

FY24 Anticipated Application Deadlines:

Patriot Grant FY24 Anticipated Deadlines: The first business day of each month at 3:00 P.M. Eastern (2/1/24, 3/4/24, 4/1/24, 5/1/24, 6/3/24)
Major & Premier Grant FY24 Anticipated Deadlines: Cycle 2: March 26, 2024, Cycle 3: June 16, 2024
All deadlines are not postmarked dates as all applications must be submitted in the Discover SC Web Grants program. Dates subject to change.

FY24 Anticipated Grant Award Dates:

Patriot Grant FY24 Anticipated Award Dates: The first business day of the following month
Major & Premier Grant FY24 Anticipated Award Dates: Cycle 2: May 10, 2024 Cycle 3: September 1, 2024
Application responses can be award/fund, award/partially fund, not award, and requiring more due diligence for a final decision. More due diligence would, of course, delay a final award date if eventually approved. This is especially true with expensive site grants. Pro Tip: plan ahead and leave plenty of time between your application and the project start date.

Match or Cost Share Required:

Based on grant level. Patriot Grants do not require a match. However, match and partnerships are highly encouraged. Major Grants require a 20% match. Premier Grants require a 25% match. This is a % of the total budget (not a % of the ask).
Tip for figuring 20% match: Divide the grant request amount by .80 then multiple that number by .20.
Match can exceed match requirement amount.

Make sure to include details about those matching funds in your grant application budget. It is great to document on grant budgets in-kind match such as volunteer hours, food donated by the local merchants association, etc. This shows great local buy in! However, please keep in mind that in-kind donations cannot be used for required matching percentage. 

Remember that final reports will require documentation that any required matching funds have been expended (invoices and proof of payment).

Grant Distribution:

Competitive Grants will be distributed with 80% upfront and 20% appropriated upon approval of completed final report including documentation of deliverables, measurement of success, and receipts/proof of payment showing the full grant amount plus any required match has been spent on the project.

Helpful Links:

How to Register for the Discover SC Web Grants Program
How to Submit Your Application in the Discover SC Web Grants Program
SC250 Webinars
Sample Contact Excel Spreadsheet - Required Support Material for Most Grants
Word Document with Paper Version of Application for Reference and Preparation Only - Please note that all applicants must be completed in the Discover SC Web Grants Program.


*Grant funding is dependent on allocations from the State Legislature each year. SC250 may choose to fund, not fund, or partially fund applications. The Commission retains the right to make exceptions or alter the up to amount that may be approved for each grant. All information is intended to be a summary and subject to change. Contact info@SouthCarolina250.com or 803-898-3392 for more information.

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