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Remembering Bob Silman

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Many of the preservationists in this county consulted with Bob Silman, recognizing how unusual it was to find an engineer that said “we can do this”: we can save original fabric and insert sensitive structural upgrades that result in countless historic buildings being not razed but put back to use. It sounds so simple, but his sensitivity to historic structures revolutionized the field.   Bob Silman inspecting the substrate at Chesterwood during stucco replacement project in 2015 | Credit: ...
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The White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) recently published an  advance notice of proposed rulemaking  in the Federal Register, requesting public comments  through August 20 about plans to update the implementing regulations of the  National Environmental Policy Act  (NEPA). The goal of the update would be to ensure a “more efficient, timely, and effective NEPA process.” This review has been prompted by  Executive Order 13807 , issued in August 2017, and is part of the Trump administration’s ...
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Filmed and produced by Shannon Lawrence In 2014 David Young, then the executive director of Cliveden , wrote about a new play that explored the life of the enslaved and free people that had once lived at this Germantown Avenue home in Philadelphia. Developed by the staff of the Philadelphia Young Playwrights , “ Liberty To Go To See ” presented Cliveden—a National Historic Landmark site and one of the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s historic sites—with a unique opportunity to ...
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By Emma Gencarelli Lyndhurst, a National Trust for Historic Preservation historic site and a National Historic Landmark, in Tarrytown, New York, is primarily known for its 1838 Gothic Revival mansion. In fact, the mansion draws so much focus that it often overshadows the rich history of the picturesque landscape surrounding it—the specimen trees; sweeping lawns; romantic gardens; and a massive greenhouse structure that was once filled with orchids, palm trees, and many other exotic ...
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Local businesses are more than the hub of America’s economic engine. Everywhere from small towns to big cities, they create spaces to gather and connect, support local sports leagues, and provide teenagers their first jobs. They define the identity and values of neighborhoods and are just as much assets of our cultural heritage as the buildings they inhabit. The preservation movement has traditionally been rather passive when it comes to the immaterial, or intangible, values of institutions. We ...
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By Government Relations Staff To receive regular updates from the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s government relations team, sign up  for our new monthly newsletter. Credit: Architect of the Capitol   House Passes Interior Appropriations Bill On July 19 the House of Representatives approved its version of the FY19 Interior appropriations bill ( H.R. 6147 ) after considering more than 75 amendments. During House floor deliberations, members passed several amendments ...
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The National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Research & Policy Lab is launching a major new study about the connections between preservation, affordability, and risk of displacement in historically African American neighborhoods in 10 cities across the United States. Supported through the African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund (AACHAF), this study will examine how the physical character of neighborhoods, buildings, and blocks may influence changes to the social character of neighborhoods. ...
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Last week Preservation Leadership Forum hosted a webinar about national marine sanctuaries. Jeff Gray, the superintendent of the Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary on Lake Huron in Michigan, and Sammy Orlando, the Chesapeake Bay regional coordinator for the Office of National Marine Sanctuaries—both of which are a part of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA)—discussed garnering support for the national marine sanctuaries at Thunder Bay and Mallows Bay, a resource on the ...
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Learn More about the Route 66 Road Trip .  The most enduring highway in our public consciousness,  Route 66  represents a chapter in our history that continues to define the nation’s identity: the rise of the automobile and its implications for freedom, mobility, and the quintessential American story. To celebrate the legacy of the “Mother Road,” the National Trust for Historic Preservation and our talented road team are taking to the streets—literally. From July 2 to August 3, ...
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By Thomas B. Creager Jr. Every old building has a significant value, whether that lies in its architectural style, its age, its unique construction process, or its significance to the community. Playing a small role in safeguarding the existence of historical buildings is the passion of Historic Appraisal Services. Founded in 2002, Historic Appraisal Services specializes in insurance replacement cost appraisals of historic structures and is the exclusive appraisal company for National Trust ...
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Editor's note:  Twenty years ago the U.S. Green Building Council helped take the concept of “green building” mainstream with the launch of the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) rating system. Today, LEED is written into building codes across the country, guiding not only the construction of new buildings but also renovations—and even entire neighborhoods and cities. But with an increasingly urgent need to quickly and dramatically reduce carbon emissions associated with the construction ...
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The Farnsworth House, which Ludwig Mies van der Rohe designed in 1945 and built in 1951, sits in the floodplain of the Fox River in Plano, Illinois, about 55 miles west of Chicago. The house is a steel structure with concrete floors and travertine pavers, and its interior space is enclosed with large panes of glass held in place by simple steel frames. The Farnsworth House | Credit: National Trust for Historic Preservation In fall 2017 staff at the Farnsworth House noticed a crack in ...
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Introduction by Ariane Hofstedt and Videography by Mark Hildebrand Since December 2017 master stone mason Ray Cannetti has been working with Historic Annapolis at the James Brice House in Annapolis, Maryland. His primary focus has been completing forensic work and restoring architectural elements to their original 1774 appearance. The James Brice House account book provides no direct evidence about who did the original pointing work. Whether they were a free journeyman, a master mason, ...
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By Morgan Vickers During summer 2018 the National Trust for Historic Preservation, together with the Route 66 Road Ahead Partnership and other Route 66 organizations, is conducting a major marketing campaign to support the permanent federal designation of Route 66 as a National Historic Trail (NHT). The campaign will also be a national celebration of Route 66—the places, the people, and the stories that make it an irreplaceable part of the American landscape. Route 66 was named to the ...
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In recognition of its expanded scope and role, the Preservation Green Lab is now the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s Research & Policy Lab . The Research & Policy Lab will continue to provide cutting-edge research and policy innovation to support the conservation and reuse of older and historic buildings across the country. The National Trust founded the Preservation Green Lab in 2009 to strengthen the connections between environmental sustainability and historic preservation. ...
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Since 1988 the National Trust for Historic Preservation has used the list of America's 11 Most Endangered Historic Places to raise awareness about the threats facing some of the nation's greatest treasures. This year’s list is no different. The decision to save a historic place is not something you make just once; it’s a choice you must make over and over again. Every time it needs a new roof, new electrical and mechanical systems, or structural repairs—the kind of investments that extend ...
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By Priya Chhaya and Reina Murray A little more than a year ago, the two of us were tasked with surveying the role technology plays in historic preservation. Over the course of many subsequent hours of planning—and cups of coffee—we tackled this broad subject. We ultimately decided to focus on two distinct applications of technology in preservation. The first is the documentation of historic places and the management of the resulting historic resource data. The second is telling the stories ...
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During last week’s Forum Webinar, representatives from three National Treasure projects discussed centering their preservation work on people. Ana Edwards reflected on her role at Shockoe Bottom , Gabriela Rosada talked about her experience in Little Havana , and Seri Worden gave insight into the Historic Neighborhoods of Philadelphia . Watch the full recording , and then read “ Preservation for People: A Vision for the Future ,” which inspired this webinar. March 2018 opening of the  ...
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By Robert Klein Scofield Mansion is one of only 10 known remaining buildings designed by architect and sculptor Levi Scofield, who is best known for the Soldier’s and Sailor’s Monument that stands in Cleveland’s Public Square. Scofield designed and built his family home on Cleveland’s East Side in 1898. “It was designed in a very picturesque setting to overlook the city,” said Kathleen Crowther, president of the Cleveland Restoration Society . “He built it in a bucolic area to have magnificent ...
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Despite the highly polarized political environment, Congress is making progress on funding bills and legislation relevant to the historic preservation community. Read on for a roundup of current bills and advocacy efforts. To receive regular updates from the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s government relations team, click here to sign up for our new monthly newsletter. Credit: Architect of the Capitol House and Senate Appropriations Bills On June 6 the House Appropriations ...
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