Author Archive

Join the Preservation50 Celebration!

Posted on: June 23rd, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation

 

By Eden Burgess, Preservation50

150623_blog_photo_preservation50

2016 marks the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA), signed by President Lyndon Johnson on October 15, 1966. NHPA has transformed the face of communities from coast to coast, establishing the legal framework and incentives to preserve historic buildings, landscapes, and archaeology.

Preservation50 is the United States’ four-year effort to celebrate, learn from, and leverage the NHPA’s first five decades to assure historic preservation’s vibrant future in America. History lovers of all ages and backgrounds are gearing up for a slate of programs and initiatives aimed at revealing the great value that historic preservation delivers to the American people, and growing a community to lead preservation in the next 50 years.

The National Trust is a close partner in planning the celebration, and invites all its members to spread the word about how the NHPA has shaped the preservation of America’s historic and cultural heritage legacy in every corner of the nation.

2016 might feel like it’s far off, but it will be here before we know it. Get involved now by visiting www.preservation50.org and connecting with the celebration on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

[Preservation Tips and Tools] The First Step for Putting Women Back in History

Posted on: June 9th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 10 Comments

 

By Karen Nickless, Field Officer, and Heather Huyck, President at National Collaborative for Women’s History Sites

Gerda Lerner, a pioneering scholar of women’s history, looked back on several decades of research in women’s history and divided it into four phases, each building on the other to reach a complex understanding of the history of women. Lerner saw historians of the 1960s doing what she called “compensatory history" -- that is, looking for women and inserting them into male-dominated history. She compared historians of that period to Diogenes with his lantern, seeking simply to find the women.

Today, many historic sites are still wandering with their lanterns, trying to find the women’s stories represented there. Here are some suggestions to help you illuminate the lives of women at a historic place that matters to you, whether it is a historic site or your own home.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

Weekend Reads from Next City, Belt, and More

Posted on: June 5th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation

 

By Tim Mikulski, Manager, Public Affairs

Welcome to Weekend Reads at the PreservationNation blog, wherein we share a handful of the most interesting preservation-related stories we've come across over the course of the week.

The HOPE Crew uses a pit saw and saw trestle to rip new rafter stock from newly hewn material. | Photo credit: Molly Dickerson, Facility Manager Melrose Plantation and Gerald David, GFD Woodworking.
The HOPE Crew uses a pit saw and saw trestle to rip new rafter stock from newly hewn material. | Photo credit: Molly Dickerson, Facility Manager Melrose Plantation and Gerald David, GFD Woodworking.

“Under the guidance of expert timber framers Alicia Spence and Gerry David, the [HOPE] Crew produced all of the replacement timbers on site, using fresh cut Louisiana Cypress logs. This on-site approach made sense for two reasons. First, aesthetically, the building needed to be restored without altering its appearance. Second, few modern mills can cut the long-length material required for this project.” -- Preservation Leadership Forum Blog: Conservation in Action – The African House Roof Restoration

“Tourism is also a doubled-edged sword. On the one hand, it provides communities with many benefits: new jobs, an expanded tax base, enhanced infrastructure, improved facilities and an expanded market for local products. On the other hand, it can create burdens for local communities, such as crowding, traffic congestion, noise, increased crime, and haphazard development. So the question is: how do you maximize the benefits of tourism, while minimizing the problems?” -- Better Cities & Towns: Responsible Tourism... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

This Place Matters: A Reflection (and Gallery) on Humble Places We Love

Posted on: June 4th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation

 

The pagoda in New Orleans in 2011.
The pagoda in New Orleans in 2011

With Preservation Month all wrapped up, Ariella Cohen of Next City shared a lovely personal reflection on a place that matters to her: a quirky pagoda in New Orleans that survived Hurricane Katrina, neglect, and abandonment to find new life as a bustling community cafe.

Here's an excerpt:

By the time I made it back to the pagoda last spring, it was loud and happy and overflowing with activity -- the way I’d always thought it should be. A young man I recognized from the neighborhood was working behind the counter. A friend was playing guitar on the deck. The greens on my breakfast taco came from an urban farm staffed by New Orleans youth. The pagoda was -- and is -- a place that matters.

Read the full story and see the cafe's terrific transformation here. Bonus: a cool gallery of some of Next City's favorite "This Place Matters" photos from Preservation Month!

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

5 Things You Didn’t Know About the Original Whitney Studio

Posted on: May 29th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation

 

150529_blog-photo_titanic-memorial
The Titanic Memorial in Washington, D.C. was designed by Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and carved by artist John Horrigan.

By Whitney Studio National Treasure Team

On May 1, the Whitney Museum of American Art opened the doors of its new building which sits alongside the Hudson River in New York’s Meatpacking District. The building itself is a masterpiece by architect Renzo Pianos, who openly acknowledges the building’s unique design as having several aeronautical aspects.

We know from our National Treasures work with the original Whitney Studio in Greenwich Village (now part of the New York School of Drawing, Painting and Sculpture) that this unique history is one that is continually taking shape. And because of that, we offer five lesser known facts about Gertrude Vanderbilt Whitney and the original Whitney Museum of American Art.... Read More →

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.

Weekend Reads from OregonLive, The Kansas City Star, and More

Posted on: May 22nd, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

 

By Tim Mikulski

Welcome to a recently added feature here at the PreservationNation blog: Weekend Reads, wherein we'll be sharing a handful of the most interesting preservation-related stories we've come across over the course of the week.

Wide sidewalks and historic commercial buildings on Main Street in Louisville, Kentucky.
Wide sidewalks and historic commercial buildings on Main Street in Louisville, Kentucky.

“It’s National Preservation Month once again, and here in Louisville, it’s all too often the case that preservationists find themselves at odds with various development and business interests who quickly dismiss such heritage endeavors as bad for the bottom line. Luckily, we know that preservation and business go hand in hand, and so do a growing number of local entrepreneurs. Take Tim Koons-McGee, for example, the owner of local ice cream parlor The Comfy Cow.” – Broken Sidewalk: Comfy Cow Owner Tim Koons-McGee Talks Historic Preservation and Why It’s Good for His Business

“Preservationists say some 1,700 historic properties across six Portland neighborhoods – and countless others throughout Oregon – may not be protected from demolition without help from the Oregon Supreme Court. Worries are mounting because of a recent Court of Appeals decision involving a historic property in Lake Oswego. Under the ruling, a property owner can overturn regulations to preserve buildings designated as historic if the designation was imposed by a local government.” – OregonLive: Oregon Supreme Court Case May Alter Landscape of Historic Preservation

“The father-son team has been restoring historic homes together for several years, first in Liberty and now in Kansas City, where some 7,000 vacant buildings have been a citywide concern for years. Thanks to these two, there is now one fewer to worry about. ‘We knew the house was in bad shape. What we didn’t know was that the city was targeting it. Within a week after we bought it, we were getting threatening letters from the city saying something needed to be done here,’ Ken says. ‘We don’t blame them. Something did need to be done.’” – The Kansas City Star: Father-Son Restorers Turn Ugly Homes Into Historic Gems

“A project has been launched in California to focus on the state's LGBT history as work advances on a National Historic Landmark LGBTQ Theme Study and proposed framework for the National Park Service. Called California Pride: Mapping LGBTQ Histories, the online, crowdsourced archive will feature, according to organizers, the ‘memories, stories, and images related to sites throughout the Golden State associated with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer experience.’” – The Bay Area Reporter: CA LGBT History Project Launches

“The [North Carolina] budget inserts the historic preservation tax credit of House Bill 152, which passed the House in March but has languished in the Senate’s Ways and Means Committee, which rarely meets. The recommendation is for a 15 percent tax credit for qualified expenditures up to $10 million, a 10 percent tax credit for qualified expenditures between $10 million and $20 million, and a small credit for structures that don’t produce income...The historic preservation tax credits have been instrumental in several revitalization projects in downtown Winston-Salem, with a combined capital investment value of more than $700 million.” – Winston-Salem Journal: Plan Would Restore Historic Preservation, Medical Expense Exemptions

"Pictures of the architectural splendours of Palmyra make it plain how desperately this place needs to be preserved. And if anyone thinks there’s a difference between saving stone and saving people, look on the faces of the ancient Palmyrans. The past is not a remote place. It is the mirror of ourselves. To cherish history and art is to care about the future." – The Guardian: Palmyra: is saving priceless antiquity as important as saving people?

The National Trust for Historic Preservation works to save America's historic places. Join us today to help protect the places that matter to you.

National Trust for Historic Preservation

National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded non-profit organization, works to save America's historic places.