American Express and National Trust for Historic Preservation bring back $1 million grant program

The Backing Historic Small Restaurants Grant program will once again reward 25 historic small American restaurants with grants of $40,000.

NEW YORK, NY – March 21, 2022 – American Express (NYSE:AXP) today announced the next installment of its Historic Small Restaurant Support Grant Program, which will again award $40,000 in grants, administered by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, at 25 small historic restaurants across the country.

The past year continued to pose challenges for restaurateurs as they navigated the impacts of the pandemic, including the ebb and flow of foot traffic as new variants of coronavirus emerged. According to State of the Restaurant Industry 2022 from the National Restaurant Association, more than half of restaurant owners surveyed said it would take a year or more before business conditions return to normal. Additionally, 96% of restaurateurs surveyed experienced supply delays or shortages of essential food or beverages in 2021, and these challenges are likely to continue into 2022.

To address these challenges, American Express is working again with the National Trust for Historic Preservation to bring back the Backing Historic Small Restaurant Grant program, first launched in February 2021, to help small restaurants that have contributed to the fabric of their communities so they can better serve their customers, recover financially and grow their businesses. The program will focus on small, historic restaurants that have been disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.

“Historic restaurants have long been among the most important establishments in our communities,” said Jennifer Skyler, director of general affairs at American Express. “They are places where families and friends gather, build relationships, share meals and party. Although their future looks bright, many of these restaurants are still bearing the brunt of the pandemic, and we are here to support them through this next phase of recovery.

“American entrepreneurship is a defining aspect of our nation’s heritage, and historic commercial landmarks are essential to community identity and economic vitality,” said Katherine Malone-France, chief preservation officer for the National Trust for Historic. Preservation. “This initiative recognizes that legacy restaurants are not just welcoming spaces where people share their traditions and eating habits, but also gathering places where history is made in meaningful ways, big and small, again and again. “

A 2021 grantee, Neir’s Tavern, located in Queens, NY, said of his grant, “Learning that we received a grant to support small historic restaurants during this dark time gave us hope and played a big role in our pandemic recovery. This allowed us to move forward with much-needed exterior renovations, including new signage and an awning. We also bought new tables and chairs. Neir’s Tavern and the entire community are extremely grateful for this generous grant.

Now in its second year, this program builds on American Express’ ongoing Backing Small initiative to provide economically vulnerable small businesses with financial support and other resources to meet their critical needs and challenges, including Saturdays. small businesses and grant programs like the Coalition to Support Black Businesses and the recent Services That Back Us program.

Small, independent restaurants that have been in business for more than 25 years and operate in historic buildings or neighborhoods are eligible to apply for grants. Restaurant owners can learn more and apply for the grant program. Additionally, dining enthusiasts can nominate their favorite establishments that meet the criteria for consideration. Official applications and public nominations will be accepted from 10:00 a.m. ET on March 21, 2022 until 11:59 p.m. ET on April 4, 2022.


American Express is a globally integrated payments company, providing customers with access to products, information and experiences that enrich lives and help businesses succeed. Learn more at and connect with us at,,, and

Key links to products, services and corporate responsibility information: payment and credit cards, business credit cards, travel services, gift cards, prepaid cards, merchant services, Accertify, InAuth, corporate card , business travel and corporate responsibility.


The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save historic places in the United States. I: @SavingPlaces

1 Under the grant program, 25 small historic restaurant owners will receive a grant in the amount of $40,000, at least 50% of which will be used to support capital improvements; up to 25% used to cover costs associated with project management and administration of grant-funded work; and up to 25% to cover general operating costs.

Comments are closed.