Local Preservationists

 

The Soo Line ore dock in 2009. Credit: chief_huddleston, flickr
The Soo Line ore dock in 2009

As a young boy, John Chapple would clamber out onto the old ore dock stretching 1,800 feet from the shores of his hometown of Ashland, Wis., into Lake Superior, where he would join his siblings and cousins for an afternoon of fishing, swimming, and jumping off the dock’s lower levels.

“And sometimes, when we got reckless, the higher levels,” Chapple says with a laugh.

Chapple, like many Ashland residents, holds a vast collection of memories of this massive, 80-foot-tall structure, a local landmark since it was built in 1916. But today, as it is slowly being demolished by its current owners, Canadian National Railway, Chapple worries the ore dock will remain just that -- a memory.... 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.

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser

Lauren Walser is the Los Angeles-based Field Editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys writing and thinking about history, art, architecture, and public space.

 

Bishop Frederick C. James (screenshot). Credit: Tracy Hayes
Bishop Frederick C. James

How's this for a vision? "The rehabilitation [of] Howard Junior High school and its transformation from a ruin into a modern learning center for the community."

That's what Bishop Frederick C. James wants to achieve with the Rosenwald School in rural Prosperity, SC, where he attended Howard Junior High School from the first through tenth grades. As we shared with Mabel Dickey's podcast earlier this month, the Rosenwald School Building Program began in 1912 and was called the "most influential philanthropic force that came to the aid of Negroes at that time." It eventually provided seed grants for the construction of more than 5,300 buildings in 15 states, including schools, shops, and teachers' houses which were built by and for African-Americans.

The African-Methodist Episcopal Bishop (now retired) calls those the “greatest days of his life” and credits Howard Junior High with giving him his start in everything he ever attained. He counts among his friends many of the well-known civil rights activists of the 1960s and 70s along with other world leaders, including a former United States president.

Now, as Chairman of the Board for the Howard Junior High School Center project, he's leading the fight to restore this historic, humble building and make it a pillar of the community once more. In this Voices of Rosenwald Schools podcast, hear Bishop James speak firsthand about his formative years at the school -- and maybe even recite a poem or two.

Howard Junior High School. Credit: jimmywayne, flickr
Howard Junior High School

What’s your dream for the Howard Junior High building?

[My dream is] to fulfill its stated mission: “to activate and utilize the historic school as a community center for Rosenwald School appreciation with updated focus upon youth development, African American art and Culture, tutorial education, teacher and student achievement, and other forms of community uplift, accommodation, and service.”

What’s the biggest personal lesson you’ve learned through your work with the Rosenwald School?

I’ve met wonderful folks in preservation; it’s been a very special asset to my life to know and be aware of people in this business. It has kept my hopes alive, and my expectation is to finish this job in my lifetime.

If somebody came to you and said, “I want to save a Rosenwald School,” what’s the first thing you’d say to them?

I would say by all means organize and make contact with the very best possible people that you can. Don’t let anything deter you from your dream and your goal. Get as many people as you can who have that same dream. We need more people who have the ability, contacts, and commitment to the mission.

I’ve been busy [since retirement] because of two things I’m unable to do: say no to something that’s on my heart, and give up!

Listen to the full podcast:

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.

Julia Rocchi

Julia Rocchi

Julia Rocchi is the associate director for digital content at the National Trust. By day she wrangles content; by night (and weekends), she shops local, travels to story-rich places, and walks around looking up at buildings.

From Questions to Action: How Sweet Auburn Is Reviving Its Historic Community

Posted on: February 18th, 2013 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 2 Comments

 

Written by Teresa Lynch, Senior Program Officer, National Main Street Center

Streetscape in Sweet Auburn. Credit: Stan Kaady
Sweet Auburn

I consider myself privileged to be part of the National Trust’s National Treasure team working to preserve and revitalize one of the most significant historically African-American commercial areas in the South -- Sweet Auburn in Atlanta, Georgia.

The Sweet Auburn neighborhood is particularly distinct in that it was the birthplace of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. It is where he was raised, worked, and worshiped, and it is where he is buried, within the 10-block Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site centered on Auburn Avenue. (It was also listed as one of our America's 11 Most Endangered Places in both 1992 and 2012.)... 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.

JFK Airport's Pan Am Worldport: A Jet Age Relic In Peril

Posted on: February 15th, 2013 by Katherine Flynn 6 Comments

 

A Boeing 707-100 aircraft sits at the Worldport in 1961. Credit: John Proctor, Wikimedia Commons
A Boeing 707-100 aircraft sits at the Worldport in 1961.

The original architects of the Pan Am Worldport might have hoped that the building would fit in perfectly with the landscape of the new millennium.

The terminal at New York’s JFK Airport was built in 1960 by Ives, Turano & Gardner Associated Architects in the shape of a futuristic flying saucer. It made its mark on American cultural history by sending off the Beatles after their first U.S. tour and appearing in at least one vintage James Bond adventure. Pan Am shuttered its ticket windows in 1991, but the Worldport still serves as a reminder that air travel was once seen as an exotic luxury, rather than a nuisance-riddled necessity.

Although the Worldport is iconic, its current tenant, Delta Airlines, is planning to dismantle the structure, now known as Terminal 3, in 2015 to make way for a $1.2 billion expansion of neighboring Terminal 4. The original Worldport space will eventually be used as a parking lot for aircraft.... 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.

Katherine Flynn

Katherine Flynn

Katherine Flynn is an assistant editor at Preservation magazine. She enjoys coffee, record stores and uncovering the stories behind historic places. Follow her on Twitter at @kateallthetime.

 

blog_photo_Anne and Aaron at La Salle
Anne and Aaron at the re-dedication of the La Salle County Courthouse.

We all feel some kind of love for a certain place (or places). That’s why we’re preservationists. So what happens when two preservationists fall in love? In the case of one Texas couple, meeting each other launched a commitment to celebrating the places they love together -- by visiting all the historic courthouses across the Lone Star State.

I talked with Anne Cornell shortly after she and her fiancé, Aaron Mason, attended the Comal County Courthouse celebration, which was one of the first events in our “I Love Texas Courthouses” campaign. Having just completed their courthouse journey on December 1, 2012, their tale of Texas love is inspiring in more ways than one.... 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.

Emily Potter

Emily Potter is a copywriter at the National Trust. She enjoys writing about places of all kinds, the stories that make them special, and the people who love them enough to save them.