National Treasures

Historic Places as Sites of Conscience: Shockoe Bottom’s Potential to Change Society

Posted on: January 19th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 5 Comments

 

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By Rob Nieweg, Field Director, and Brent Leggs, Senior Field Officer

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The National Trust for Historic Preservation and Preservation Virginia convened local leaders and historians at a retreat to weigh in on why Shockoe Bottom matters as a Site of Conscience.

On the third Monday of each January, Americans are called to reflect on the life and legacy of Martin Luther King, Jr. On this national day of service, we also are encouraged by President Obama to take action to make our nation a better place to live.

The stewards of historic places take action, of course, to document and conserve evidence of the past. They inform and engage visitors, and preserve our shared heritage for future generations. At their best, however, the historic places we work so hard to protect -- places like the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site in Atlanta, Dr. King’s birthplace, and the National Civil Rights Museum at the Lorraine Motel in Memphis -- can serve as Sites of Conscience that raise hard questions, spark discussion of contemporary social problems, and inspire us to change society for the better.

Now, we are focusing on another historic and equally worthy place to join the ranks of these nationally significant Sites of Conscience: Shockoe Bottom.... 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.

A Letter from Lupita: Why Shockoe Bottom Deserves — and Demands — Protection

Posted on: January 15th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 4 Comments

 

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Written by Erica Stewart, Manager, Public Affairs

Shockoe Bottom in downtown Richmond, Virginia, was once the second-largest slave trading site in the country. Today, it is mostly a patchwork of vacant lots and surface parking.

This is no way to treat the land on which men, women and children were bought, sold, and tortured. Neither is building a major league ballpark upon it, which is exactly what Richmond Mayor Dwight C. Jones is proposing in his “Revitalize RVA” plan.

This threat prompted us to list Shockoe Bottom to 2014’s list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places and also to name it to our portfolio of National Treasures. We are now working with Preservation Virginia, local leaders, and national experts to shape an alternative development plan that would excavate the archeological remains that lie beneath the ballpark site and uplift Shockoe Bottom as a place for reflection, healing, and learning. (Read more about the project in this previous post.)

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Our work caught the attention of actress Lupita Nyong’o, who won an Academy Award for her portrayal of Patsey in the film “12 Years a Slave,” based on the memoir of free man-turned-slave Solomon Northrup. She was moved to write a passionate hand-written letter to the mayor, expressing her desire to see Shockoe Bottom preserved as a site of conscience. Here’s what she had to say.... 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.

Elkhorn Ranch’s Star Turn on CBS Sunday Morning

Posted on: January 5th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

 

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National Trust president Stephanie Meeks prepares to ride around Elkhorn Ranch with correspondent Mo Rocca in July 2014.

CBS Sunday Morning came to Theodore Roosevelt's Elkhorn Ranch! Last July, the show traveled to Medora, North Dakota, to shoot a segment on this beautiful natural spot, where Teddy Roosevelt hunted, ran cattle, and formulated his influential conservation ethic in the late 1800s. Watch the clip here.
... 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.

10 Preservation Wins & Losses in 2014

Posted on: December 31st, 2014 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 6 Comments

 

By Sarah Berger, Public Affairs Intern

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The year 2014 marked momentous milestones for preservation -- local communities fought for their landmarks, corporations embraced adaptive reuse, and a huge National Parks bill was passed by Congress. At the same time, more significant buildings and places were lost to neglect, demolition, and the test of time.

Since we are an optimistic group here at the National Trust, we want to focus on the positive preservation achievements, of which, there were many. And we will use the losses to propel us forward in our work to save America’s historic places.

As we celebrate our first year at the Watergate building, we are thankful for the growing support of our organization, and of the preservation movement as a whole. Transitioning into 2015, take a look back at preservation’s year in review; we hope it inspires you to make a difference in the New Year!... 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.

 

There’s no better spot to peep Warby Parker’s newest spectacle collection or score those budget-breaking, limited edition Jimmy Choos than in a trendy pop-up shop. The concept is simple: Insert yourself into a temporary space that puts new eyes on your brand and new minds on your mission, and see what you can accomplish.

So if a pop-up can sell merchandise, why can’t it sell an idea or a campaign?

That’s exactly what the National Trust’s project team thought when they created a preservation-themed pop-up shop in Cincinnati’s Fountain Square this past fall. The goal was to promote the Yes on 8 campaign, aimed at convincing Hamilton County voters to approve a sales tax issue to save the city’s Union Terminal (one of our National Treasures). The campaign ultimately succeeded -- the measure passed with 61% of the vote.

The experience showed us the value of having a physical presence around an issue -- and also taught us a few tips and techniques for making a pop-up work. Here are seven factors to consider as you plan your own successful preservation pop-up.... 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.

David Weible

David Weible

David Weible is a content specialist for the National Trust, previously with Preservation magazine. He came to D.C. from Cleveland, Ohio, where he wrote for Sailing World and Outside magazines.

Big Win: Manhattan Project National Historical Park Established!

Posted on: December 15th, 2014 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 11 Comments

 

Written by Nancy Tinker, Senior Field Officer, and Denise Ryan, Director of Public Lands Policy

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Big news on the National Treasure front -- the Manhattan Project National Historical Park Act was passed in the National Defense Authorization Act of 2015 on Friday, December 12, 2014.

With this action, Congress has authorized the establishment of a new National Park commemorating the history of the Manhattan Project. Comprised of the three laboratories whose work was dedicated to accomplishing the Manhattan Project’s mission, the new national park will include historic resources located in Los Alamos, New Mexico; Oak Ridge, Tennessee; and Hanford, Washington. As laboratories located in each site furthered Manhattan Project goals, each location will spotlight specific resources that were critical to this era in American history. ... 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.