National Treasures

National Treasure Terminal Island Now on Path to Preservation

Posted on: September 21st, 2013 by Julia Rocchi 2 Comments

 

Building on Terminal Island. Credit: Konabish ~ Greg Bishop, Flickr
Threatened building on Terminal Island

We at the National Trust have been hard at work in Los Angeles this past month, and we wanted to share with you some great success stories from our recent projects.

You may be familiar with Terminal Island, one of our National Treasures in the Port of Los Angeles. This once-vibrant Japanese-American fishing village was a major World War I and II shipbuilding center, as well as the birthplace of the worldwide tuna canning industry. The island also played a key role in a tragic chapter of American history: In 1942, an entire Japanese-American community there was seen as a national security threat, and its residents were forcibly removed and imprisoned at the internment camp Manzanar.

Despite the site’s deep historic significance, however, the Port of Los Angeles has neglected historic buildings there, and in 2011 introduced a plan to demolish more structures rather than adapt and reuse them. The National Trust and the Los Angeles Conservancy joined forces on an advocacy campaign to save the island’s history -- an effort that paid off when the Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners adopted the forward-thinking Los Angeles Port Master Plan Update this past August.

The approved plan -- the first comprehensive update of the Port’s development policies and procedures in more than three decades -- offers a path for the preservation and re-use of historic buildings on Terminal Island. The National Trust and the Los Angeles Conservancy worked to ensure that the final plan would serve as a replicable model for other industrial ports throughout the country.

Preservation-focused components of the plan include:

  • Identifying Fish Harbor’s Japanese-American Commercial Village as a historic resource
  • Removing road realignments originally intended to bisect historic buildings
  • Making mixed-use land use designations that provide greater flexibility in adaptively reusing historic buildings

The Terminal Island Japanese Village Memorial honors the Japanese immigrants who lived in the once-thriving fishing village. Credit: FredMikeRudy, Flickr
The Terminal Island Japanese Village Memorial honors the Japanese immigrants who lived in the once-thriving fishing village.

In addition to the National Trust’s work at Terminal Island, the organization’s Preservation Green Lab is partnering with the Urban Land Institute to advance the reuse of historic and older buildings in the City of Los Angeles. Using downtown Los Angeles as a testing ground, the initiative is identifying the most common barriers to building reuse and developing strategies to make it easier to creatively reuse buildings. Their work will help inform policies and incentives for building reuse in other cities. A report to announce the findings of the LA pilot will be available mid-October, 2013.

On the heels of these successes, the National Trust opened a field office in downtown Los Angeles on September 1 to further its efforts to preserve historic places in Southern California and the Southwest. Chris Morris, formerly with the National Trust’s Chicago field office, is leading the new LA office and is joined by Jeana Wiser of the Preservation Green Lab. We’re excited to continue our work there and keep the good news coming!

Have a question about our work in this region? Know a cool place you want us to know about, too? Email editorial@savingplaces.

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.

 

Rosenwald Schools once served generations of teachers, students, parents, and other community members. Today, the schools’ walls continue to tell stories of segregation, perseverance, and the importance of education -- like those from Mabel Dickey, who attended Mt. Zion near Florence, S.C., and Bishop Frederick C. James, who attended Howard Bishop High School in Prosperity, S.C.

Stories like these make the preservation of Rosenwald Schools unique, and they’re the reason the National Trust launched a campaign to save as many remaining schools as possible.... 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.

Prentice Women's Hospital: A Eulogy

Posted on: July 15th, 2013 by Guest Writer 4 Comments

 

Written by Anjulie Rao

Anjulie Rao, left. Credit: Mike Hari, fadeoutfoto.com
Anjulie Rao and Prentice Women's Hospital. Headshot photo courtesy of Mike Hari, fadeoutphoto.com

On October 12, 2012, I was thrown out of the Apple store on North Michigan Avenue, Chicago. I may have cried after the employee said, gruffly, he could not help me. Granted, I was overwhelmed by school, tired from the long walk to the store, and was feeling helpless in a city where I was a brand-new citizen.

I left in a hurry, dodging crowds of shoppers and tourists. The noise, the bustle -- it was all too much. The stench of new clothes, the one you wash your brand new jeans twice before wearing to get rid of, filled the air as I walked past the storefronts.

Taking a right, I headed toward the lake down an unknown side street where it felt like the quiet echoed amongst the calamity. This, and the breeze from the lake, drew me in. One block down, it seemed to go silent. Walking past walls of glass, I realized I had entered the Northwestern Hospital corridor. Steel, white concrete, and the glimmering facades enveloped me.

If Chicago was host to the White City of the World's Fair, this street was host to the Glass Village.

And then, she appeared. A monolith of matte concrete, arched and radiating toward the street.... 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.

Guest Writer

Although we're always on the lookout for blog content, we encourage readers to submit story ideas or let us know if you've seen something that might be interesting and engaging for a national audience. Email us at editorial@savingplaces.org.

A Threatened American Legacy at Hinchliffe Stadium

Posted on: July 11th, 2013 by Katherine Flynn

 

130711_blog_photo_hinchliffe1
Hinchliffe Stadium was built in 1932 and has been closed since 1997.

Brian LoPinto loves the story of how, when a journalist asked the Great Bambino what he thought of Negro Leagues player Josh Gibson being called the “black Babe Ruth,” Ruth replied, “I’m the white Josh Gibson.”

Gibson was just one of the legendary players to take the field at Hinchliffe Stadium in Paterson, N.J. as a member of the Pittsburgh Crawfords, playing Hinchliffe's home team the New York Black Yankees. Today, however, the great legacy of professional African-American athletes at Hinchliffe Stadium in America's Jim Crow era is threatened by crumbling walls, splashes of graffiti, and general disrepair.... 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.

[10 on Tuesday] How to Save Your Historic Neighborhood School

Posted on: June 25th, 2013 by Emily Potter

 

Historic neighborhood schools are anchors within our communities. They offer students distinctive and unique places to learn. They provide constant and subtle lessons about the history of their town and respect for the past. And, as they are often within walking distance, local schools encourage students to walk or bike, promoting healthy activity and a chance to experience and engage with their surroundings.

Yet, in recent years, America’s older and historic neighborhood schools are being increasingly demolished or deserted in favor of newer and bigger buildings located farther away.

The National Trust first brought national attention to this issue in 2000, when we named Historic Neighborhood Schools to the America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places list. We continue to advocate for these special places through our National Treasures work preserving Rosenwald Schools.

blog_photo_Montana historic school
Musselshell School in Musselshell County, Montana. Historic Rural Schoolhouses of Montana were named to the 2013 America's 11 Most Endangered Historic Places list

As preservationists, we know there is a better solution for our local historic schools. It’s up to us to take a stand when one of these community landmarks is at risk. Here are 10 steps you can take to help save a threatened historic school in your neighborhood:... 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.