Candacy Taylor is an award-winning author, photographer and cultural documentarian working on a multidisciplinary project based on the Green Book. In Overground Railroad: The Green Book and the Roots of Black Travel in America, Taylor has masterfully pulled together this story of resilience and segregation in a way that elevates and memorializes this history – a history still rooted in countless towns and cities across America.
What we preserve tells as much about us as it does about the history itself. Preservation is a movement with a history unto itself – but all too often that story is overlooked in favor of the history of the sites that are preserved. Whitney Martinko, an associate professor of History at Villanova University, is tackling that story and recently published Historic Real Estate: Market Morality and the Politics of Preservation in the Early United States, an in-depth look at why and what we preserve and how interconnected our preservation landscape is to our market driven economy. On this week’s PreserveCast we’re talking about the impulse to preserve and what it says about us, the preservers.
Change can be difficult. Building momentum, engaging diverse audiences, and bringing history to life is the tough stuff of preservation and community engagement.
Today’s guest, Dana Saylor, has made it her mission to help fellow preservationists, artists, community leaders, and interested citizens in developing strategies that turn ideas into action. Dana is a creative community connector and mentor to fellow changemakers. Her work is about building emotional connection to place. She is based in Buffalo, New York, and is an Advisor to the National Trust for Historic Preservation. On this week’s PreserveCast, we’re talking the nuts and bolts of making change happen with a leading voice for this critical and timely work.
Hey, Nick here, and before we get started – just a quick reminder to please consider making a donation – even $5 would go a long way – and you can do it at preservecast.org; also would you be willing to give us a five-star rating and maybe a quick review. We haven’t had a new review in way too long and I need your help! And, finally, today’s episode is made possible thanks to the support of The 1772 Foundation. Now, let’s make some change happen!
As America confronts, commemorates, and questions its history – preservationists like Catherine Fleming Bruce are helping to frame those conversations and providing powerful examples of how historic places can help us in these challenging times.
Bruce is the author of an award-winning book on sustaining the sacred spaces of civil rights, human rights, and social movements and how this work can support the march towards greater social justice. With her book, "The Sustainers: Being, Building and Doing Good through Activism in the Sacred Spaces of Civil Rights, Human Rights and Social Movements," she became the first African American winner of the annual Historic Preservation Book Prize, presented by the University of Mary Washington Center for Historic Preservation.
It’s a weighty topic – but one we must explore – and with someone who knows it well on this week’s PreserveCast.
PreserveCast Ep133: Creating Places for Nature in Urban Communities with Alden Stoner of Nature Sacred
In challenging times, nature brings us peace. From time immemorial, humans have taken to nature to soothe their anxious and tired souls. In today’s busy and built world, opportunities to experience and commune with nature are limited – but today’s guest is doing something about that.
Alden Stoner is the CEO of Nature Sacred, an organization dedicated to bringing natural sanctuaries to urban communities to reduce stress, improve health and strengthen communities. It is work that was important before and is becoming increasingly more important every day the nation confronts its current challenges.
Take a deep breath and find your favorite tree – we’re talking nature in urban spaces on this week’s PreserveCast.
PreserveCast Ep131: Clara Barton to Coronavirus: American Public Health History with Dr. Marian Moser Jones
As the nation confronts a crippling pandemic – we find ourselves drawn to history for parallels. History provides context for the confusion.
Today’s guest has dedicated her career to exploring those connections. Dr. Marian Moser Jones is a social historian and ethicist of public health who studies the way in which Americans care for other Americans – and how that shapes our response in emergencies like the current pandemic.
Stay calm – we’ll get through this – and we’ll learn how on this week’s PreserveCast.
PreserveCast Ep121: (Re)Developing the “Why” of Preservation with Tom Moriarity of Retail Development Strategies
Why do we do what we do and why don’t others understand why it’s so important?
Those are the driving questions that prompted long-time preservationist and real estate expert Tom Moriarity to dive into a discourse on what preservation needs in the years ahead. It’s a big task – but one that we need to constantly revisit if we hope to save places that truly matter.
So, prepare yourself for some real talk from one of America’s most trusted voices in preservation on this week’s PreserveCast!
PreserveCast Ep119: [Healthy, Hip & Historic] “Reset to Default: Making Preservation the New Normal” by Jim Lindberg, National Trust for Historic Preservation
In the penultimate episode of PreserveCast's special series during the COVID-19 pandemic, we will hear from Jim Lindberg, Senior Policy Director for the National Trust for Historic Preservation who will discuss the ways the goals of preservation are interconnected with those of advocates for issues like the environment, community health, and equitable development.
Collaboration and partnership are a key part of any successful preservation effort and this presentation by Jim Lindberg will explore the importance of this broad coalition to build systems that encourage building reuse. Research across these various fields demonstrates the need to build new rules and unwind entrenched thinking on building communities. The aim to create places that are greener, healthier, and more equitable applies to urban and rural communities alike.
James Lindberg has more than 25 years of experience in historic preservation, planning, and sustainable development. Through his leadership of the National Trust’s Research & Policy Lab and the ReUrbanism initiative for cities, he seeks innovative ways to encourage building reuse and create more inclusive, healthy, and resilient communities.
PreserveCast Ep118 [Healthy, Hip & Historic] “Preserving History, Promoting Health” by Dr. Debarati Majumdar “Mimi” Narayan
In this third episode of PreserveCast's special series during the international coronavirus pandemic, we will hear from Dr. Debarati Majumdar "Mimi" Narayan of the Health Impact Project about the impact of historic preservation on the health of our communities and ourselves. As preservation addresses the physical material of our built environment – and those materials’ potential positive or negative health impacts – so too, does preservation address an emotional connection to a time and place in history.
Dr. Narayan's unique research specialty will help us place our preservation work in a broader context, identify challenges, and illuminate solutions for linking historic preservation and healthy communities.
Dr. Mimi Narayan is a Principal Associate at the Health Impact Project, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts. The goal of the national Health Impact Project is to reduce health inequities and improve the health of all people by ensuring that health is a valued consideration in public policy. Dr. Narayan is directing the Project’s strategic initiative that assesses the relationship of climate change and health, and specifically tribal health. The relevant nature of her work and its potential impact on communities has attracted national and international interest and recognition.
PreserveCast Ep. 117 [Healthy, Hip & Historic] People, Old Places & Health with Dr. Jeremy C. Wells of the University of Maryland
As COVID-19 has changed the everyday ways that we interact with each other and our communities, it’s clear that our environment has important physical and psychological effects on us all.
This podcast is part 2 of a five-part special series presented by PreserveCast and powered by Preservation Maryland and includes the audio recording of Dr. Jeremy C. Wells' presentation of this subject at a Preservation Maryland conference in 2016.
Dr. Jeremy C. Wells is an Assistant Professor at the University of Maryland's School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation, with a research focus on the ways that people interact with their environment and the ways historic places – their decay and patina – influence their psychological and social health.
Dr. Wells’ research utilizes applied social science methods and presents new approaches for heritage rules, laws, and regulations. In this context of health and behavior, there is additional importance placed on the work of community planning, historic preservation, and evaluating what it is to live a healthy life in a healthy place.
Start your engines – because on this week’s PreserveCast we’re talking historic cars and the history of the American Automobile with Diane Parker, Vice President of the Historic Vehicle Association. Buckle up and hit the clutch, because you’re listening to a revved-up edition of PreserveCast.
Diane Parker is Vice President of the Historic Vehicle Association (HVA). Surrounded by gear heads from a young age, Diane developed a love and appreciation for vehicles. Since joining the Historic Vehicle Association in 2013, she has combined her love of vehicles with her expertise in operations management. Focusing on the organization’s overall vision, values, beliefs, and strategic goals, Diane is extremely passionate about the organization’s mission to share the cultural past associated with America’s automotive heritage; and to ensure it is never lost nor forgotten.
Two major components of that include Cars at the Capital, their annual exhibition on the National Mall in Washington, DC and, the continued growth of their program that documents historically significant vehicles. That program is the National Historic Vehicle Register. Similar to the Register of Historic Places, and in partnership with the U.S. Department of Interior, the Register program ensures that culturally and historically significant automobiles are fully documented and reside within the Library of Congress in perpetuity.
PreserveCast Ep. 102: Landmarks Illinois’ Statewide Approach to Preservation & Development with Bonnie McDonald
For many PreserveCast listeners, Illinois may only mean Chicago and the hustle and bustle of the second city – but Illinois is a massive state with a rich and stunning diversity of heritage. It’s a big job to advocate for and preserve that heritage and Landmarks Illinois, founded in 1971, is in a race against time to help the people of Illinois save places that matter. Landmarks Illinois’ President and CEO Bonnie McDonald is today’s guest – a leader in the field who is blending economic and real estate development with historic preservation in new and intriguing ways. It’s time to talk preservation prairie style on this episode of PreserveCast.
This is also our 101st episode – and we’re changing the format slightly today to offer a brief retrospective on what we’ve learned about ourselves and preservation over the past 100 episodes – and to talk about where we’re headed moving forward...
If you’ve enjoyed these past 100 episodes, we hope you’ll consider making a year-end gift to offset our significant expenses in bringing you this content. Think of us as your Preservation Netflix – even a one-time $20 gift would go a long way! You can make a simple online donation to Preservation Maryland at presmd.org and hit the DONATE button in the upper right corner.
PreserveCast Ep. 95: The Intersection of Historic Preservation and Smart Growth With Kimberly Golden Brandt
Historic Preservation and Smart Growth are cut from the same cloth – and a interconnected in a variety of important ways. When we grow smart, we revitalize historic communities and keep from sprawling outward.
It’s a message that Preservation Maryland has been making for years – but in the past several months the organization has become much more serious about this issue following its merger with 1000 Friends of Maryland, the statewide smart growth organization.
Kimberly Golden Brandt, the former Executive Director of 1000 Friends now heads up Smart Growth Maryland, a campaign of Preservation Maryland.
On this week’s PreserveCast we’ll learn why the organizations merged and what it could mean for the future of Maryland.
Savannah, Georgia, often conjures up visions of elegant mansions shrouded by graceful Spanish moss clinging to the branches of towering live oaks. But that vision isn't always a given. It is a daily fight to protect the city’s historic character from the ravages of time and being loved to death by throngs of tourists every year. Fortunately, Daniel Carey is leading the effort at the Historic Savannah Foundation to maintain an authentic experience for tourists of the city as well as keeping it affordable and maintaining its charm for its native residents. Learn how Daniel is promoting slow rise revitalization efforts as well as developing a sustainable approach to tourism management in this week's episode of PreserveCast!
In Berea, Kentucky, the local government has taken stock of the town's historic artistry and crafting traditions, decided to invest, and the craziest part? It seems to be working. Mayor Steven Connelly joined Nick to share some of the unique history of his town, for instance how they pushed back against segregationist policies of the Jim Crow South, and he shared news of what will hopefully be a bright future driven by tourism based on the local folk art heritage.
Also, just so you know, this is episode is brought to you in partnership with the Rural Maryland Council, as we explore historic rural communities on this week's PreserveCast!
You’ve probably heard of Andrew Carnegie or the Rockefeller family, but have you heard of Julius Rosenwald? Today’s guest may be able to help with that. Aviva Kempner is a Peabody award winning documentary filmmaker, whose work focuses on unsung heroes from Jewish history. I spoke with Aviva about her most recent work which details the life of Julius Rosenwald, who during the turn of the century both revolutionized the business of Sears and Roebuck, and vastly influenced black education in the Jim Crow South with his philanthropy.
It's easy to be surprised by the history in your own backyard, even if you're a historic preservationist. Nathan Dennies, the chairperson and founder of the Greater Hampden Heritage Alliance, joined Nick to trace the history of Baltimore's iconic Hampden-Woodberry neighborhood, including the many recently repurposed historic mills, Baltimore's famous "Avenue," and the Jones Falls river. The area isn't just home to Baltimore's famous Hon-Fest, it's Preservation Maryland's home as well. After all, this is PreserveCast.
Ever walk into a historic building or place and find yourself imagining new ways to use it? Like an art project or public event? Well, it’s one thing to have the idea, but a historic changemaker, like today’s guest Dana Saylor, is someone who actually follows through. Dana is a prominent voice in placemaking, public art, and preservation, and she spoke with Nick from her home in Buffalo, New York about creative ways that people can use historic places.
When is a building worth saving? This can be a controversial question, even among preservationists. Greg Galer, the Executive Director of the Boston Preservation Alliance, joined us on PreserveCast to share his perspective. Greg has worked to preserve many examples of mid-century modern ‘brutalist’ architecture, like Boston City Hall and the Boston Christian Science Center. Should exposed concrete structures be preserved the same as 19th century estates? A brutal question (and hard to answer too), but let’s talk about it on this week’s PreserveCast.
Based in Newport, Rhode Island, the 1772 Foundation’s mission is to ensure the safe passage of historic buildings and farmland to future generations, in the Northeast and around the country. Under the direction of today’s guest, Mary Anthony, one of the key tools the Foundation uses to accomplish this mission is their nationwide historic property redevelopment, or revolving funds, program. Mary explained to us details of how her organization can help save buildings from Colorado to Florida to Maine, and also why it’s important to emphasize the human element of philanthropy, on this week’s PreserveCast.
Producer's note: We apologize for any issues you might have had while accessing this episode. We've recently made some software changes and the original file did not upload correctly. It's been updated and you should now be able to stream and download as usual. Thanks for your patience, and keep on preserving!
When does history end? For some, like today’s guest Clare Lise Kelly, it might be closer to the present than you think. Clare is an architectural historian here in Maryland whose focus is the preservation of mid-century modern architecture from the 1950s and 60s. She literally wrote the book Montgomery Modern, focused on the architecture of Montgomery County, northwest of Washington D.C. From the future of office parks to Frank Lloyd Wright, there’s a lot to cover before we have to say so long on this episode of PreserveCast.
Producer's note: At around the 24:00 minute mark, Clare mentions an example of a building with a successfully, fully-restored facade. She said the Seagram Building, but was actually intending to reference the Lever House.
Historic Preservation is not always accomplished through the same methods, and it's certainly not the same everywhere you go. That's why Nick sat down with Lauren Oswalt McHale, President of the L'Enfant Trust in Washington, D.C., to compare notes on some of the trust's biggest programs. This includes their massive conservation easement program, as well as the trust's work using a revolving fund to redevelop historic properties in the Anacostia neighborhood in Southeast D.C., an area whose history has too often been ignored.
The spread of clean energy technologies is the wave of the future, but where exactly should wind and solar plants go? Nick sat down with Elizabeth Watson and Janet Christensen-Lewis, of the Kent Conservation and Preservation Alliance in Kent County, Maryland, to discuss their experience working to find alternative locations for wind turbines away from Kent County's scenic and historic farmland. Janet and Elizabeth are tackling a difficult problem, but they believe that the necessary move to create sustainable energy does not have to mean erasing our past.
PreserveCast Ep. 24: Diners, Dueling Grounds, and Dives: Roadside Architecture and the Anacostia Trails Heritage Area
Route One was once America's thoroughfare, built over the older Quebec-Miami International Highway and the Atlantic Highway. A decent stretch of this old road falls under the purview of Aaron Marcavitch, the Executive Director of Maryland's Anacostia Trails Heritage Area, and this week's guest. Aaron is an advocate for the preservation of roadside architecture, ranging from diners that predate the highway system to an old Woolworth's. This is all in addition to his work preserving communities and buildings throughout his area, including an old dueling ground just north of Washington D.C. Roll down the window and put your feet on the dash. This is PreserveCast.