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The Antiquities Act of 1906 is the nation’s oldest law intended to protect historic features on federal public lands. Passed to address the problem of looting of archaeological sites and artifacts on public lands , it grants authority to the president to designate federally owned “historic landmarks, historic and prehistoric structures, and other objects of historic or scientific interest” as national monuments. It was signed into law by President Theodore Roosevelt, who used its authority to designate ...
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By Heather L. Bailey  and Amy Loewenstein Scanlon The preservation program in Madison, Wisconsin, began in 1971 after a failed grassroots effort to save an 1853 mansion on the west side of the city. The galvanized new Landmarks Commission set out designating the most iconic architecture and began an effort to survey the city for properties that were architecturally, historically, and culturally significant. The city and the Landmarks Commission expanded its historic preservation program and ...
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In late July 2020, preservationists from across the country gathered for the Dismantle Preservation Virtual Unconference. Organized and sponsored by Sarah Marsom a heritage resource consultant, this conference directly addressed some of the problematic areas of the preservation profession to encourage practitioners to confront and acknowledge  systems that hamper equity within the field. With panels that ranged from racial bias to mental health (and a quick project share at the end of the night ...
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Originally published in Cultured Magazine (September 2018) This post is part of an examination  of the role intangible heritage plays in preservation and storytelling. You can learn more in the latest issue of Forum Journal .  A curatorial project from the start, the Glass House of architect Philip Johnson and curator David Whitney was a place to experiment with architecture and landscape, display a rapidly evolving art collection (most of which was donated to MoMA), and act as a ...
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How are preservation organizations that hold easements conducting monitoring visits while we are in the midst of a pandemic? We reached out to five different staff members from preservation organizations across the United States to hear how they’ve updated their practices to continue their easement stewardship obligations. These organizations have developed site visit protocols designed with the safety and health of their staff, consultants, and property owners as a priority. Hough Building, ...
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All year long organizations across the country have been marking the centennial of the 19th Amendment. Along with that commemoration comes increased time and attention to the telling of women’s stories at historic places. This past spring Rowman & Littlefield (as part of their series with the American Association of State and Local History ) published " Doing Women’s History in Public: A Handbook for Interpretation at Museums and Historic Sites ." Written by Heather Huyck, this handbook, ...
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Cross posted from MainStreet.com  Whether making a specific policy ask or maintaining sustained support, community revitalization professionals and historic preservationists need to develop and hone advocacy skills. View recordings of this online course offered in July/August 2020 through the  Main Street America Institute  and presented by the  Preservation Leadership Forum  for an in-depth overview of five key advocacy areas. This 5-part series features expert speakers and practitioners ...
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Forty years ago a group of like minded individuals came together to start the National Main Street Center, a program of the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Over the years, the program supported communities by building tools, a network, and a strategy for protecting the economic vitality of older and historic downtown and commercial district corridors against the threats of sprawl.  Today, Main Street America continues to serve those same communities, supporting small businesses and ...
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By Priya Chhaya and Pam Bowman The Great American Outdoors Act is now law. For many years, the National Trust for Historic Preservation in collaboration with our local, state, and national partners have successfully made the case that establishing a dedicated fund for National Park Service (NPS) deferred maintenance needs and fully funding the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) will will provide essential support to preserve America’s historic places for generations to come. This work ...
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We are thrilled to announce the 2020 recipients of the Johanna Favrot Fund for Historic Preservation and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Fund for Historic Interiors. Grants from these two funds will help preserve a diverse range of historic sites across the country. Between the two funds, the National Trust has granted a total of $211,000 to 26 organizations in 18 states and the District of Columbia. The Johanna Favrot Fund for Historic Preservation and the Cynthia Woods Mitchell Fund for Historic ...
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By Christine Grubbs and Tom Cassidy In early July, the National Park Service (NPS) announced the FY 2019 grants for the Underrepresented Community Grant Program, a competitive grant program that helps to protect and interpret the sites that tell the stories of all Americans. This small, but significant program was created to better recognize places of  African American, Asian American, American Indian, American Latino, Native Alaskan, Native Hawaiian, LGBTQ, and women’s history.  The Underrepresented ...
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Today, the National Trust for Historic Preservation and a coalition of partners filed a lawsuit challenging new National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) regulations issued earlier this month. Signed into law on January 1, 1970, Congress established NEPA to ensure that federal agencies consider the impacts of their actions on the human environment, including both cultural and natural resources. Like the National Historic Preservation Act, NEPA is a procedural statute intended to foster well-informed ...
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Editor’s Note: The House of Representatives passed H.R. 7608—a package of four appropriations bills including the FY21 Interior Appropriations bill—by a vote of 224 to 189 on Friday, July 24, 2020. This week, the House is considering legislation that would provide a new record high of $136.425 million for the Historic Preservation Fund (HPF), a nearly $18 million (15%) increase from last year’s already record funding. The “minibus” package of appropriations bills that includes the FY21 Interior ...
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Last week Preservation Leadership Forum published a piece by Brown University professor Marisa Angell Brown that addressed “Preservation’s Existential Crisis.” In that piece Brown examined some of the standard practices of preservation and described how some of these methods are used to create a culture of inequity. That piece is just the beginning of a conversation that the field will need to grapple with in the months and years to come, and we at Preservation Leadership Forum are committed ...
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On June 17, 2020, Preservation Leadership Forum held a webinar examining the economic and longer-term impacts of the pandemic across a variety of communities. The recording for the webinar is now available in the Forum Library . Credit: Neal Santos Description: Cultural institutions, historic sites, Main Street commercial districts and the small businesses they support, have all experienced severe economic impacts from the pandemic through job losses and business closures. In ...
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On June 24, Preservation Leadership Forum, in partnership with the Texas Historical Commission presented the Forum Webinar "Creating a Successful Case Statement." The webinar recording is now available along with some responses to follow up questions.  Description :  Fundraising is about building a compelling case for support for your organization—its mission, the programs you offer, and the projects that you implement to serve your constituency. This case is equal parts storytelling and facts ...
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Psychology Today defines resilience as “the psychological quality that allows some people to be knocked down by the adversities of life and come back at least as strong as before. Rather than letting difficulties, traumatic events, or failure overcome them and drain their resolve, highly resilient people find a way to change course, emotionally heal, and continue moving toward their goals.”  As I reached a decade in the historic preservation field, I recognized my professional development ...
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January 23, 2020, was an unseasonably warm night for New England. I almost left the house in a short-sleeved sweater—but I was glad when I arrived at Grace Church in downtown Providence that I had worn an extra layer. When I get nervous, I get cold, and it was good to be over-dressed as people started to arrive for Providence Preservation Society’s annual meeting. As the keynote speaker, I wasn’t sure that they would like what I had to say, in short, that preservation is facing an existential crisis. ...
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Editor's Note:    After Senate passage of the Great American Outdoors Act on June 17, 2020, the National Trust turned our attention to the House where we worked closely with key stakeholders in preparation for a House vote. In a few short weeks, the House companion bill (H.R. 7092) garnered 250 cosponsors and a vote on the Great American Outdoors Act was scheduled for the House floor. On July 22, 2020, the House overwhelmingly passed the bill by a strong bipartisan vote of 310-107 , sending ...
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By: Kerri A. Inglis and Molly Baker In March 2020, fourteen students from the University of Hawaiʻi at Hilo gathered at Kalaupapa National Historical Park for a HOPE (Hands-on Preservation Experience) Crew preservation workshop and cultural immersion program, offered by the National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP) in partnership with the National Park Service (NPS). From 1866-1969, the Kalaupapa peninsula was used as a place of separation for those who had contracted Hansen’s disease ...
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