Blog of the Pennsylvania State Historic Preservation Office

Category: National Trust for Historic Preservation

Preserving the Henry Ossawa Tanner House

Earlier this year, the National Trust for Historic Preservation included the Henry Ossawa Tanner House in North Philadelphia on their 11 Most Endangered List.  With the help of the Preservation Alliance for Greater Philadelphia, I was able to connect with Chris Rogers of the Friends of the Tanner House to talk about what is happening at this National Historic Landmark.

Read on if you’re looking for some good news…

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Telling a Fuller Story about African American History in Pennsylvania’s Chesapeake Bay Watershed

Earlier this month, the National Trust for Historic Preservation (NTHP) announced a new pilot project with PHMC, PA DCNR, the states of Maryland and Virginia, and National Park Service Chesapeake Bay to identify, document, and map sites and landscapes in the Chesapeake Bay watershed region significant to African American history and culture.

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Supporting Pennsylvania’s Main Streets

As one of PA SHPO’s Community Preservation Coordinators, one of the more heartening things I’ve observed (and participated in) the past few weeks has been the response of many Main Street communities and their partners to the COVID 19 crisis.

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Preservationists are flocking to Chambersburg in June

Each year we meet to share and learn at the Statewide Conference on Heritage and to be inspired at the Pennsylvania Historic Preservation Awards. This year, those two inspiring events combine offering preservation festivities from June 19-21 in Chambersburg. For the first time, we’ll host an all-day Pennsylvania Barn & Farm Symposium.

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Spotlight Series: National Alliance of Preservation Commissions

The Spotlight Series is an occassional series that highlights interesting people, places, programs, and partner organizations working on historic preservation issues.

PrintWhen it comes to protecting historic places and maintaining the character of our neighborhoods, villages, and landscapes, we all know that the real action is at the local level.  Cities like Charleston and New Orleans paved the way for municipal historic preservation programs in the 1920s and 30s when they adopted ordinances designating portions of those cities as historic districts and enacting design review programs for managing changes to buildings in those districts.  Since then, thousands of communities across the country, including hundreds in Pennsylvania, have adopted preservation ordinances of their own.  A major resource for these communities is the National Alliance of Preservation Commissions, the only national –level organization dedicated to serving the needs of local government preservation boards and commissions through education, advocacy, and training. Continue reading

Preserving the Oley Valley Rural Historic District in Pennsylvania

by Brenda Barrett

Editor’s Note: This post was originally published in the Living Landscape Observer and appears here with the permission of the author and founder of that publication, Brenda Barrett.  We appreciate Brenda’s contributions and reporting on this subject.

Oley Valley gristmill.  Credit: Zachary Pyle.

Oley Valley gristmill. Credit: Zachary Pyle.

Even in a state famous for its agricultural landscapes, the Oley Valley in southeast Pennsylvania is an exceptional place. Located in a in a bowl-shaped valley flanked by the forested hills of the Reading Prong and underlain by limestone, the region is drained by two small creeks, the Manataway and the smaller Monocacy. English Quakers, French Huguenots, and Palatine farmers from Switzerland and Germany settled in the valley as early as 1725 in search of religious freedom and good farmland. They found both, producing an 18th-century pattern of farmsteads, fields, and villages that has marked the landscape ever since. Continue reading

Day on the Hill: Taking the Preservation Message to Pennsylvania’s Congressional Delegation

Tuesday, February 26, was the day the rubber literally hit the road!  In fact, using a pedometer, one of the participants in “Day on the Hill” in Washington, D.C. determined that Pennsylvania’s two teams each walked about 5 miles in their efforts to deliver Pennsylvania’s preservation message to members of our Congressional delegation! Continue reading

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