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Tiya Miles is the author of two books, a monograph called The House on Diamond Hill and a novel called The Cherokee Rose.

“Whenever I visit antebellum homes in the South, with their spacious rooms, their grand staircases, their shaded back windows that, without the thickly planted trees, would look out onto the now vanished slave quarters in the back, this is invariably my thought. I stand in the backyard gazing up at the windows, then stand at the windows inside looking down into the backyard, and between the me that is on the ground and the me that is at the windows, History is caught.” -- Alice Walker, quoted in The House on Diamond Hill

In 2011, Tiya Miles was awarded a MacArthur Genius Grant for her work connecting the histories of African and Cherokee people in Colonial America. I heard Miles speak this past spring at the National Council on Public History annual meeting in Nashville where she described the challenges of translating her historical monograph (a book that is based on a single subject) on the Chief Vann House into a fictional novel.

The monograph, The House on Diamond Hill, examines the racial and social complexities of Cherokee Chief James Vann’s plantation in Diamond Hill, Georgia, from its construction in the 19th century, through Cherokee removal in the 1830s, and  up to its transformation into a historic site in the 1950s. The second book, The Cherokee Rose, is a fictional account of a similar house.

The novel uses the home and its history to make connections between individual’s different interpretations of the past. Both books serve as a means to emphasize that history is not linear or finite. That multiple perspectives shift the way race, gender, and politics interact with one another on the ground.

In both books, “history is caught” and translated deftly by Miles in a way that is at times both recognizable and strange -- but also important to telling the whole story of this period in American history. I recently interviewed her to learn more about her work and her process in writing The Cherokee Rose.... 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.

Priya Chhaya

Priya Chhaya

Priya Chhaya is Associate Manager for Online Content, Preservation Resources at the National Trust for Historic Preservation. A public historian at heart, she sees history wherever she goes and believes that it is an important part of the American identity.

 

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Wildwood’s iconic and photogenic Caribbean Motel was the perfect location to host a gathering of vintage-loving guests.

Retro Roadmap hosted the first of what is hoped to be more Vintage Weekends, showcasing the mid-century motels and more of the shore town of Wildwood, New Jersey with a sold-out crowd attending from up and down the East Coast.

From the base camp at the iconic Caribbean Motel (built in 1957 by Lou Morey and listed on the National Register of Historic Places), the tiki-themed event combined vintage-inspired activities with modern social media sharing to increase awareness of and interest in the many facets of 1950s and ‘60s culture that still exist in this popular beach town.... 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.

Beth Lennon

Beth Lennon is the creator of the website RetroRoadmap.com. As "Mod Betty," she delights as the retro travel "hostess with the mostess," scouting out cool vintage places and sharing them with the world.

After Remarkable Relocation, Historic Gay Head Lighthouse Shines Again

Posted on: August 12th, 2015 by National Trust for Historic Preservation 1 Comment

 

By Jenna Sauber

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The Gay Head Lighthouse was triumphantly reopened on August 11, 2015.

After 160 years of sea cliff erosion, the Gay Head Lighthouse in the town of Aquinnah on Martha’s Vineyard was literally a few dozen feet away from being lost forever to the Atlantic Ocean.

Two years of planning, paperwork, heavy labor, and $3.5 million later, island residents and visitors alike can sleep easily again under the sweep of the familiar Gay Head light. After an extensive relocation campaign this spring, the lighthouse reopened on August 11, a safe 130 feet farther inland where its red and white beacon is shining brightly once again.

A journey of 130 feet, however, required the help of an entire community. Here are just a few of the local preservationists who made this vision a reality.... 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.

[Preservation Glossary] Today’s Word: Architectural Conservation

Posted on: August 12th, 2015 by Jamesha Gibson 1 Comment

 

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Architect of the Capitol masons repair the balustrade of the Cannon House Office Building.

“Conservation” is a term that we most associate with protecting the natural environment. However, “conservation” -- or more technically, “architectural conservation” -- can also be used to refer to the protection of the built environment.

The Georgia Department of Natural Resources Historic Preservation Division Glossary of Preservation Services and Terminology defines it as:... 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.

Jamesha Gibson

Jamesha Gibson

Jamesha Gibson is an Editorial Intern at the National Trust. She is passionate about using historic preservation as an avenue for underrepresented communities to share their unique stories. Jamesha also enjoys learning about other cultures through reading, art, language, dancing, and especially cuisine.

 

Written by Anya Grahn

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Single-wall structures can be found throughout the Pacific Northwest, West, and the South. Some communities, such as Park City, Utah, have found ingenious ways to restore these structures.

Chances are that if you live in a community that sprung up because of sawmills, railroads, oilfields, or even mining, your historic structure may be comprised of single-wall, plank wall, or box house construction.

Rapid population growth during times of economic boom required the immediate construction of buildings, and single-wall construction or “wood tents” allowed communities to meet mounting demands. These rudimentary wood structures were meant to provide temporary shelter; however, many have been successfully preserved and continue to be used today.... 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.

Climate Change and Preservation: Where Do They Intersect?

Posted on: August 11th, 2015 by Stephanie Meeks 3 Comments

 

In her President's Note in the Summer Issue of Preservation magazine, National Trust for Historic Preservation President, Stephanie Meeks discusses preservationists' responsibility to protect historic places in the face of climate change. Her thoughts have been republished in full below.

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National Trust for Historic Preservation President, Stephanie Meeks.

Summertime brings picnics, baseball games, family vacations, and, increasingly, record-busting temperatures. Each of the 10 hottest years on record has happened since 1998, including the hottest of all, 2014. As a preservation community, we are starting to grapple with the effects of this changing climate in very concrete ways.... 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.

Stephanie Meeks

Stephanie K. Meeks

Stephanie K. Meeks is president and CEO of the National Trust for Historic Preservation.