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This Far by Faith

Over the coming year as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, we’ll visit our archives to highlight some of our past programs. The five programs we’ve selected exemplify one of our…

Over the coming year as we celebrate our 50th anniversary, we’ll visit our archives to highlight some of our past programs. The five programs we’ve selected exemplify one of our core values — community, creativity, curiosity, inclusivity and partnership. These programs highlight eras in history and humanities disciplines, including history and literature.

Our first spotlight is on This Far by Faith, a traveling exhibit launched in 1982. It told the story of African Americans in Indiana from the early 19th century to the late 20th century. Topics included early rural communities; urban life in cities such as Evansville, Gary and Indianapolis; employment and entrepreneurship; religion; education; civil rights and politics; the arts; and sports. 

Through the exhibit, visitors were able to learn about the struggles Black Hoosiers have faced because of racial injustice and structural racism, as well as the successes they have achieved despite these obstacles.

This Far by Faith was curated by Indiana Humanities, the Indiana Historical Society and the Muncie Public Library. Over 50 photographs were featured in the exhibit, including images from museum collections, newspaper archives, and donations from residents around the state. A corresponding exhibit booklet featured photos alongside an essay on Black Hoosier history edited by historian Emma Lou Thornbrough.



In 1983, This Far by Faith received the Schwartz Prize from the Federation of State Humanities Councils. It was the first time an Indiana Humanities program won this award, given to the best public humanities project in the nation.

After its original run, This Far by Faith continued to travel across Indiana for fifteen years as part of Indiana Humanities’ Resource Center (now known as Novel Conversations), a lending library of books, exhibits, videos and other humanities materials. 

The long-running success of this exhibit highlights the importance and value of sharing community stories.


Indiana Humanities was founded in 1972 on the ideas of supportive grantmaking, public dialogue and ambitious projects. We’re celebrating 50 years because of curious Hoosiers like you. Please consider a gift in recognition of this milestone.