The Kansas State Historical Society announced Thursday that Douglas County and the city of Lawrence have been awarded grants for two historic preservation projects.
The money, however, has not yet arrived, mainly because of wrangling over the federal budget, officials at the Kansas Historical Society said.
The two projects awarded include $20,000 for the Douglas County Heritage Conservation Council to continue its survey of historic assets in Wakarusa Township, and $15,500 for the city of Lawrence to conduct a survey of structures that survived Quantrill's Raid in 1863.
Those were among nine grants totaling $116,234 that the Historical Society awarded for the 2013 Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) grant program, which is funded through the National Park Service.
The grants represent 60 percent of the cost of the projects. The remaining 40 percent will come from local funds.
Aug. 21 will mark the 150th anniversary of Quantrill's Raid, an attack by Confederate guerrillas that destroyed much of the city and left as many as 200 people dead.
Dale Nimz, a historic preservation expert, said he has worked on earlier efforts to document all of the pre-Civil War structures still standing in Kansas, most of which are located in the eastern part of the state. He said the grant will provide resources to conduct more in-depth research on Lawrence buildings that are believed to date back to that period.
Nimz has also been working the past few years with the county's Heritage Conservation Council conducting historic asset surveys in each of the rural townships.
Last year, he and colleague Susan Ford completed their survey of Eudora Township. This year, they hope to finish a survey of Kanwaka Township and are starting the initial phases of the Wakarusa Township survey.
"That's great," Nimz said when he heard about the county's grant. This will make the third phase of the survey possible.
Money for the grants comes from an annual allocation the state receives from the National Park Service, and Patrick Zollner, director of the cultural resources division, said it hasn't been determined how much the state's allocation will be reduced because of mandatory federal budget cuts known as "sequestration."
Zollner said the state hasn't yet heard how the National Park Service will distribute its cuts, but if the money available for the local grants ends up being short, he said the grants will be funded in order of priority.
Of the nine Kansas grants that were approved, Douglas County's grant was ranked second highest in priority and the Lawrence grant ranked fourth.