Apply for a Travel Award

Kenneth Spencer Research Library is pleased to announce the availability of three travel grants to facilitate research and use of the library’s collections. The amount available for each award is $1,500.
Aerial view the KU campus at sunset, prominently featuring Spencer Research Library and the Campanile.

Available Awards

This award is available to researchers focusing on the African American experience. It is made possible by a generous contribution by KU Professor Emerita Sandra Gautt.

The Spencer Library documents the African American experience in Kansas and the region through extensive collections of personal papers and the records of organizations, businesses, and churches. Other potentially relevant materials can be found in KU's University Archives and the Wilcox Collection of Contemporary Political Movements.

This award is available for researchers focusing on the Polish 16th and 17th centuries. It is made possible through a generous endowment from Alexander and Valentine Janta.

Polish (and Polish-related) manuscript holdings in Spencer Library include the Graziani-Commendone collection of 16th and 17th century correspondence and other papers about Catholic Church affairs and the Graziani and Commendone families. The manuscripts in Latin, Polish, and Italian include:

  • Letters from Bishop Antonio Maria Graziani to Cardinal Commendone and others, as well as ciphers, speeches, reports, notes, constitutions, etc., about 360 items, 1571-1573. Call number: MS 62.
  • Letterbooks of Cardinal Commendone,16 books, some bound together, 1560-1581. Call numbers: MS 86, MS E97, MS E105.
  • Letterbooks of Bishop Antonio Maria Graziani, 5 volumes, 1596-1599. Call numbers: MS E110, MS D121.
  • Collections of texts, 290 items. Call numbers: MS 87, MS D120, MS D123.
  • Legal documents of Graziani Family, 24 items. Call number: MS 205.
  • Separate manuscript books, 4 items. Call numbers: MS D112, MS B73, MS D118, MS D119.

Early printed books of the 16th and 17th centuries about Poland and its history are held in the Summerfield Collection of Continental European books printed before 1701. In addition to many of the books listed in Janina Hoskins’ Early and Rare Polonica of the 15th-17th Centuries (Boston: G. K. Hall, 1973), Spencer Research Library holds at least 67 titles not listed in Hoskins; see Barbara Backus McCorkle, “Addenda to Hoskins: Polonica,” Papers of the Bibliographical Society of America (PBSA), 69 (1975), 380-388.

This award is available to researchers working on a project that could benefit from using any of the collections at Spencer Research Library. See the Collections section of the Spencer website to learn more about the library's holdings.

Eligibility Criteria

Travel grants will be awarded to faculty, undergraduates, graduate students, or independent researchers living outside a 100 mile radius from Lawrence, Kansas. All three grants are open to U.S. and international researchers. Applicants must document a research agenda requiring the need for in-person access to materials held by Kenneth Spencer Research Library. Grant money may be used for travel, lodging, and other expenses while pursuing research at the library.

Award recipients may be asked to give a brief, informal presentation about their research topic during their visit.

Application Procedures and Deadlines

We are not currently accepting travel award applications.

We anticipate opening the online application in Fall 2023 for travel in 2024. Please check this page for updates.

Travel Award Contacts

Whayne Travel Award
Deborah Dandridge
Field Archivist and Curator, African American Experience Collections

Janta Travel Award
Elspeth Healey
Special Collections Librarian

Spencer Travel Award
Beth M. Whittaker
Interim Co-Dean, KU Libraries
Associate Dean for Distinctive Collections
Director of Spencer Research Library