Preserve America News from the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation

In this Issue

Looking for Preserve America Grant Experiences
Call for Ideas, 50th Anniversary of the NHPA
Hurricane Sandy Effects and Recovery
New National Landmarks Connected to Preserve America Communities
New Solar Installation Resources Available
Historic Communities Make Good Recreational Spots
National Trust Session Features Historic Communities and Economics


About Preserve America
Contact Us
Forward this newsletter

Preserve America News |November  2012

Looking for Preserve America Grant Experiences

In honor of the upcoming 10th anniversary of the Preserve America program, we encourage you to consider making a presentation at the Journey Through Hallowed Ground (JTHG) Partnership’s 
annual conference on May 21- 22, 2013, in Gettysburg, Pa. As part of the conference, the Partnership, the ACHP and the National Park Service are organizing a symposium entitled, “Getting More Bang for the Buck: Tools for Sustainable Growth and Heritage Tourism.” Session proposals are due by Nov. 30.

This gathering will provide a great opportunity for you, as activists and professionals involved in heritage preservation, planning, economic development and tourism, to share your experiences and successful strategies with your peers. A call for proposals is being circulated which outlines topical areas of interest and provides details about participating in the conference as a presenter. This will be a valuable learning opportunity.

Even if you do not submit a proposal for a conference session, we hope you will consider registering for the conference and learning from experts and representatives of communities throughout the JTHG area and the larger surrounding region. Participants will also include representatives of Certified Local Governments, Main Street communities and communities that are gateways to National Parks. Read more information about the Journey Through Hallowed Ground Partnership, which is a National Heritage Area corridor in Virginia, West Virginia, Maryland and Pennsylvania that is home to a number of Preserve America Communities and many other historic places.

Gettysburg Shriver House Museum

Call for Ideas, 50th Anniversary of the NHPA

October 15, 2016, will mark the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA) being signed into law. The NHPA supported and built on the Antiquities Act of 1906, the Historic Sites Act of 1935, the National Trust for Historic Preservation Act of 1949 and other preservation policies and programs. Through the 1966 statute and later amendments, it has established a national preservation program that today includes the National Register of Historic Places and National Historic Landmarks, Section 106 project review, the ACHP itself, the Historic Preservation Fund, the Federal Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits, State and Tribal Historic Preservation Officers, Certified Local Governments, Federal Preservation Officers and the Historic American Buildings Survey/Historic American Engineering Record/Historic American Landscape Survey. It also gave birth to other related programs, such as National Heritage Areas, National Historic Trails, Save America’s Treasures and Preserve America.

The NHPA and its resulting benefits have been vital to instituting a preservation ethic across the nation. This has resulted in saving and revitalizing thousands of historic places that otherwise would have been lost forever.

Periodically, there have been reviews of the NHPA and suggestions for improving or enhancing its components. For the 40th anniversary in 2006, the ACHP and its partners created a youth-oriented publication (a Newspapers in Education special newspaper insert) and sponsored the Preserve America Summit that took place in New Orleans.

The time from now until October 2016 offers an opportunity to reinvigorate and widen support for preservation. The preservation community and its partners should articulate and demonstrate the direct benefits and indirect influence of the last 50 years of historic preservation activity in the United States through a creative, collaborative project with broad public appeal. A strong connection to the economy, including job creation, is certainly essential, but also critical are the role of preservation activity in U.S. infrastructure, environmental and energy sustainability, public education and community livability. At the same time, the anniversary and pending program reauthorization offer an opportunity to review and critically examine the law and its implementation, and to seek improvements and enhancements to public policy and program administration over the next decade.

The ACHP Alumni Foundation has supported a project to develop a series of Section 106 Success Stories. To date, 10 of these case studies have been developed of the 106 stories envisioned. What else could be planned? Other activities might include joint events and related promotional activities, such as an “open doors” national effort at historic sites or coordinated events sponsored by states or public-private collaborations. Send your suggestions about how we might recognize the 50th anniversary to Ron Anzalone by Dec. 7.  

Hurricane Sandy Effects and Recovery

We want to extend our wishes for a speedy recovery to all those communities, organizations and individuals who suffered damage and losses as a result of Hurricane Sandy. The storm made landfall between Atlantic City and historic Cape May, N.J., on Oct. 29. In diameter (1,100 miles/1,800 km), Hurricane Sandy was the largest Atlantic hurricane on record. Strong winds, tidal surge, rain and snow caused significant damage to communities, historic sites, national parks and infrastructure in many states in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast and well inland. 

During the storm, the National Park Service (NPS) closed or cordoned off 69 national park units. Damage assessments are ongoing. There are a number of Web sites for preservation work that may be helpful in the weeks and months ahead. These include information made available through the National Trust for Historic Preservation; the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training of the NPS; and Heritage Preservation and the Heritage Emergency National Task Force.

State Historic Preservation Offices in directly affected states, such as Maryland, have also posted information and requests for local community damage information. Please share information and photos of damage to historic resources in your community by sending the ACHP an e-mail.

Asbury Park, N.J.--a gazebo is wrested from its foundation by Hurrican Sandy. (© Photo by Sharon Karr/FEMA)

New National Landmarks Connected to Preserve America Communities

Secretary of the Interior Ken Salazar recently announced the designation of 26 new National Historic Landmarks (NHL)and one National Natural Landmark (NNL). Just 2,527 NHLs and 592 NNLs have this distinction. 

Read the full list of new landmarks. Six of these landmarks are located in Preserve America Communities, including the following:  Camp Evans, Wall Township, N.J. (also a designated Preserve America Steward, the InfoAge Science History Center at Camp Evans); Central Branch, National Home for Disabled Volunteer Soldiers/Dayton Veterans Administration Home, Dayton, Ohio; Denver Civic Center, Denver, Colo.; Historic Moravian Bethlehem Historic District, Bethlehem, Penn.United Congregational Church, Newport, R.I.; U.S. Post Office and Courthouse, San Francisco, Calif.

Wall Township is in Monmouth County on the New Jersey shore near Asbury Park, and the township and Camp Evans were directly affected by Hurricane Sandy; we are waiting to hear of damage to the historic facilities. Newport, R.I., had high water and some wind damage from the hurricane; Newport’s Ocean Drive was partially blocked and closed by boulders and other wave debris. Bethlehem, Penn., in the Lehigh River Valley, had a significant number of downed trees and extensive power outages from the storm.

Denver Civic Center view of the Greek amphitheater (photo coutresy Wikipedia)

New Solar Installation Resources Available

Two new resources concerning installation of solar panels on historic buildings are now online. The National Park Service has posted a new Web site on the topic, and the Department of Energy, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and the North Carolina Solar Center have collaborated to produce Installing Solar Panels on Historic Buildings: A Survey of the Regulatory Environment.

National Park Service Web site image

Historic Communities Make Good Recreational Spots

In October, Outside magazine listed America’s 10 Best Riverside Towns. Knowing the connection between water power and transportation and American settlement, it should come as no surprise to historic preservationists and historians that six of these 10 were also Preserve America Communities.

 In preparing the top 10 list, Outside partnered with American Rivers, the nation’s leading fresh water non-profit, to create a list of the 50 best riverside towns in the nation. They crunched the list to come up with the 10 that best fit their criteria. Outside placed the resulting list on its Web site and had readers vote on their favorite to obtain a ranking. More than 20,000 people responded and voted in the order noted parenthetically below.

 The Preserve America Communities of Boise, Idaho (3); Durango, Colo. (4); Missoula, Mont. (5); Nashville, Tenn. (6); Asheville, N.C. (8); and, Ithaca, N.Y. (10) were ranked. Read about them here.

The real surprise is that the remaining four were not already Preserve America Communities, as they likely could meet Preserve America standards with a bit of effort. They were Richmond, Va. (1); Nevada City, Calif. (2); Milwaukee, Wisc. (7); and, Hood River, Ore. (9). Read more.

The Clark Fork River in downtown Missoula, Mont.

National Trust Session Features Historic Communities and Economics

An affiliate session for Preserve America Communities and others was held in Spokane, Wash., on Oct. 31 at the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s National Preservation Conference. The special forum, titled “Historic Communities and Tourism Economics,” was part of a continuing series of affiliate sessions for communities and their partners that we have hosted for a number of years at the Trust conference.

Moderated by ACHP Executive Director John Fowler, speakers included Donovan Rypkema of PlaceEconomics, who later in the week was honored with the Louise DuPont Crowninshield Award for outstanding contributions to the field of historic preservation (see the press release); Allyson Brooks, the Washington State Historic Preservation Officer; Kim Bui-Burton of Monterey, Calif.; Ellen Sievert, Great Falls, Mont.; and, Tara Mastel, Whitehall/Jefferson County, Mont. ACHP Chairman Wayne Donaldson attended, along with about 50 others. Thanks to all the panelists and other participants for excellent presentations and a lively and timely discussion.  

Riverfront Park Train escorts visitors around the historic Great Northern Clock Tower. (photo courtesy Ron Niebrugge)

Advisory Council on
Historic Preservation
1100 Pennsylvania Ave Suite 803
Washington, DC 20004