PreserveCast Ep. 48: Jim Lighthizer and the Civil War Trust

December 4, 2017

How are battlefields preserved? Why are battlefields preserved? What should we do with a battlefield site once it is protected? These are all important questions, and we are fortunate to be joined by someone who can possibly provide the answers. Jim Lighthizer is the President of the Civil War Trust and an expert in battlefield preservation. Join Nick as Jim shares insight into how he maintains momentum at the head of the nations leading Civil War Battlefield Preservation Organization on this week's PreserveCast.

You can find the website for the Civil War Trust here: (


This episode is part of focus series on the history of the Antietam Battlefield.


PreserveCast Ep. 47: The History of Women’s Suffrage in Maryland and Beyond

November 27, 2017

Often with history and historic preservation it can be all too easy for the places associated with a particular piece of our history to fall through the cracks. To a degree, that has been the case the case with the history of Maryland's women's suffrage movement, but today we're joined by historian Kacy Rohn, a native Marylander and the author of a recent historic context report focused on the stories of these women and the places that were important to their stories. Join us for a discussion on the fight for women's right to vote in the United States, and the power of place to help us remember that fight. This is PreserveCast.

For more information on Preservation Maryland's involvement in preserving the history of the Women's Suffrage movement, and on how you can support it, check out this link: (


PreserveCast Ep. 46: True Treats Candy and the Age-Old Sweet Tooth

November 20, 2017

It doesn't matter if it's your molar, your canine, or what, everybody has some kind of sweet tooth. Something that you may not be thinking about is how that sweet tooth has played a role in history. Susan Benjamin is the founder of True Treats Candy in Harpers Ferry, West Virginia, and author of the book Sweet as Sin: The Unwrapped Story of How Candy Became America’s Favorite Pleasure. Susan has appeared on platforms from NPR to NBC, and she joined us on PreserveCast to share the rich history of candy in American culture, from pre-Colombian Native Americans to the working poor of the Industrial Revolution. Go ahead and spoil your dinner with this week’s PreserveCast.


Here is a link to Susan's website, where you can find out more about their candy and Susan's book: (

And thanks to the Storm Boyz Lenne Lenape Drum, whose music was used in the Preservation Explanation Segment.


UPDATED PreserveCast Ep. 45: Mary Anthony and the 1772 Foundation

November 13, 2017

Hello all, we've recently made some software changes and as a result the file did not upload correctly and some of you may have had trouble accessing the episode. It's been updated and you should now be able to stream and download just like usual. Thanks for your patience, and keep on preserving!

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.


PreserveCast Ep. 44: Primitive Technology and the Food of the Future

November 6, 2017

As historic preservationists, we often can fall into only thinking about history through the framework of buildings and sites, or even get caught up on buildings from just one era. That is not the case for our guest today, Dr. Bill Schindler. Bill is one of the world’s leading experimental archaeologists and an expert on primitive technologies and historic foodways. Join us as Bill explains how food has driven technological development throughout human history, how we are uniquely positioned in that history, and why we may want to look at ancient foodways to inform how we eat in the future. Hopefully we won’t make you too hungry, this is PreserveCast.

You can go here to check out Bill's work with the Eastern Shore Food Lab.


PreserveCast Ep. 43: PlaceEconomics and the Threat to the Federal Historic Tax Credit Program

October 30, 2017

Understanding why preserving historic places makes good economic sense can sometimes seem complex and hard to explain. But fortunately our guest today is Donovan Rypkema, the Principal of PlaceEconomics and the President of Heritage Strategies Internationa, and a man who has made a career out of explaining the interplay of economics, real estate, and preservation. Donovan is one of the world thought leaders on preservation economics, and he and Nick talked about the research that Donovan and others have done into the economic benefits of preservation, both short and long term, as well as the uncertain future of the Federal Historic Tax Credit program. This is PreserveCast.

Here is a link to the most recent blog post from Preservation Maryland on the Federal Historic Tax Credit. Here you can find a video from Nick explaining the threat to the program, as well as a link to contact your representative in congress and links that go in to more detail on what the program does: (

Also, here is a link to PlaceEcnomics' "38 Reasons to Keep the Federal Historic Tax Credit": (


PreserveCast Ep. 42: Montgomery Modern: What’s the Future for Mid-Century Modern Architecture?

October 23, 2017

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. This is PreserveCast.

Here's a link to learn more about Clare's work with Montgomery County, MD, plus information on how to buy her book: (

And in case you missed it, you may want to check out our previous episode with Atul Sharma of the Montgomery Planning Department on Self Driving Cars.

CORRECTION: 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.


PreserveCast Ep. 41: Paint Chip Analysis with Dr. Susan Buck

October 16, 2017

From buildings to furniture to fine art, there are few historic objects or items that Dr. Susan Buck would be unable to analyze through the microscopic examination of paint samples. Join us for a conversation about Susan’s work on projects from Monticello in Charlottesville, Virginia to the Forbidden City in Beijing, China, and on items from 19th century Shaker furniture to Egyptian coffins from the 5th century B.C. What can we learn from a paint chip the size of a pin head? Find out on this week’s PreserveCast.

You can follow Susan's instagram by going here: ( and if you're going to be around Richmond in the rest of October, you can learn more about her exhibition here: (

And while we're at it, here's a link to learn more about Architectural Paint Research, or APR: (


PreserveCast Ep. 40: Colin Dickey’s Ghostland and the PreserveCast Spooktacular

October 9, 2017

As preservationists, we here at PreserveCast are usually concerned with the physical history; what we can know from the cold hard facts. But seeing as how it’s October and Halloween is around the corner, we thought we’d talk a little about haunted history. Author Colin Dickey joined me to talk about the history of ghost stories and share what we can learn from the places that scare us. The conversation ranges all the way from Silicon Valley to Richmond Virginia on this, the first ever PreserveCast Spooktacular!

For more information on Colin's book (which has just been released on paperback) check out:


PreserveCast Ep. 39: Joe McGill and the Slave Dwelling Project

October 2, 2017

Few historic moments continue to reverberate through our nation quite like the Civil War and the abolition of slavery. But despite the way the history lives on, there are some parts that will always be challenging for us to face as a nation. Joe McGill, the founder of the Slave Dwelling Project, joined me to discuss the work he does to shed light on some of the most painful, yet powerful, places in America. Join us for a discussion on the value of remember all aspects of our past, from slave dwellings to Confederate monuments, on this week’s PreserveCast.

Check out Joe's work with the Slave Dwelling project here: ( He's staying overnight in Maryland October 13th-15th and you can still join him!

This episode is part of our focus series on the history of the Antietam Battlefield.