Check it Twice: Our Preservation-Friendly Gift List

Posted on: November 29th, 2010 by Sarah Heffern
The LEGO White House.

The LEGO White House.

My six-year-old nephew is obsessed with Fallingwater. Obsessed. He asks me about it every time I see him.

Not, of course, the one designed by Frank Lloyd Wright located in western Pennsylvania - the one he saw in the gift shop at the National Building Museum's LEGO exhibit. Other than "the train that comes with a real motor" it's the biggest LEGO set he's ever seen, and he wants it. Badly.

Of course, because it's designed around an architectural masterpiece, it's for ages 16 and up, so I managed to talk him into the slightly more age-appropriate (only 12 and up!) White House set. He's entirely convinced, however, that he'll do just fine building Fallingwater ("I'm a LEGO expert, Auntie Sarah. I can build anything.") and I think part of him really expects to find it under the Christmas tree this year.

I'm not so sure,  mostly because I doubt I'd be able to let him keep it - it's that cool. (I'll admit it: I want it for myself.) It's not the only thing on our 2010 preservation-friendly gift list that I'd have a hard time wrapping up and giving away. Historic seeds from Monticello? T-shirts from Vintage Roadside? Yes, please.

There's something on the list for everyone; while the LEGO sets might not really be aimed at grade schoolers, the seeds are, as is a great set of picture books. There's also plenty on the list for the grownups: Eames chair coasters, jewelry made from historic sports stadiums, even an iPhone app.

Take a moment to peruse the slideshow and add preservation to your shopping list this holiday season. And if you have an idea for something we missed, we'd love to hear about it.

Sarah Heffern is the content manager for

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Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern

Sarah Heffern is the social media strategist for the National Trust’s Public Affairs team. While she embraces all things online and pixel-centric, she’s also a hard-core building hugger, having fallen for preservation in a fifth grade “Built Environment” class. Follow her on Twitter at @smheffern.