The founding of the National Endowment for the Humanities sprang from a belief that the humanities are as critical as the sciences to the nation’s success. “Democracy demands wisdom and vision in its citizens,” declares the legislative act that President Lyndon B. Johnson signed on September 29, 1965. The legislation continues, “It must therefore foster and support a form of education, and access to the arts and the humanities, designed to make people of all backgrounds and wherever located masters of their technology and not its unthinking servants.”
Since then, NEH has strived to provide leadership and funding to the best in humanities research, preservation, digital development, education, endowment-building, films, exhibitions, and public programming. Through NEH funding, millions have been touched by the films created, museum exhibits displayed, books written, historic places investigated, and more.