World Historical Gazetteer Project Awarded NEH Digital Humanities Advancement Grant

The National Endowment for the Humanities today announced that the University of Pittsburgh’s World Historical Gazetteer Project has been awarded a Digital Humanities Advancement Grant (DHAG), co-funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).

The WHG is a unique web-based digital humanities project of tools, platforms, content, and community about the history of place at the global scale. It contains an index of 1.8 million historical place records as well as capabilities for search, visualization, research, publication, and teaching about historical places. Professor of History and World History Center Director Ruth Mostern serves as the project PI and Dr. Karl Grossner serves as the project’s Technical Director. 

The grant will allow the project team to develop infrastructure, content, and community for Version 3 of the World Historical Gazetteer (WHG). The  index will more than double in size; the suite of tools will evolve to better support teachers, contributors, and end users; and the team will expand opportunities to involve diverse and global communities of board members, scholars, learners and developers.  

The NEH’s Digital Humanities Advancement Grants program (DHAG) supports innovative, experimental, and/or computationally challenging digital projects, leading to work that can scale to enhance scholarly research, teaching, and public programming in the humanities. In support of its efforts to advance national information infrastructures in libraries and archives, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) provides funding through this program. 

The World Historical Gazetteer project was initiated in 2017 under a 3-year Preservation and Access grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities Collections and Reference Resources Program. Development of Version 2 in 2021 and further improvements in 2022 have been generously supported by the KNAW Humanities Cluster in the Netherlands. The WHG is also supported by the University of Pittsburgh's Asian Studies Center and The Center for Russian, East European, and Eurasian Studies


Created in 1965 as an independent federal agency, the National Endowment for the Humanities supports research and learning in history, literature, philosophy, and other areas of the humanities by funding selected, peer-reviewed proposals from around the nation. Additional information about the National Endowment for the Humanities and its grant programs is available at: