LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Little Rock’s Mosaic Templars Cultural Center announced good news earlier this week in the form of a $250,000 grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

The grant will be used for phase two of the center’s renovation project, specifically a redesign of the center’s permanent exhibition interpreting the African American experience in Arkansas, as well as developing new education and outreach programming.

“The Mosaic Templars Cultural Center is vital to telling the story of Arkansas’s African American history and culture,” Stacy Hurst, secretary of the Arkansas Department of Parks, Heritage and Tourism said. “The grant award from the Institute of Museum and Library Services will help the Center reach more people with phase two of its renovation project, furthering the center’s outreach and education endeavors.”

The Institute of Museum and Library Services is a federal agency tasked with supporting museums, libraries and related organizations.

The center gets its name from the Mosaic Templars of America, a black fraternal organization founded in Little Rock in 1883. Its headquarters was the building on West Ninth and Broadway streets now housing the center.

“In 2023, the Mosaic Templars of America marks its 140th anniversary,” Jimmy Bryant, Arkansas Heritage director said. “This grant award will help the Mosaic Templars Cultural Center preserve its legacy, continuing to educate and inform Arkansans about the history of our state’s African American community.”

The renovation is expected to be completed in 2023.