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39 Nominated for NY State-National Historic Register
The New York State Board for Historic Preservation has recommended the addition of 39 properties to the State and National Registers of Historic Places. Property owners, municipalities and organizations from communities throughout the state sponsored the nominations.
Well-known landmarks and districts recommended for listing, including:
Garment Center Historic District – which includes 215 structures in a 25-block section of Midtown Manhattan, an area shaped by the city’s economic history, immigrant history, zoning and planning developments, and reforms following the 1911 Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire.
Woodlawn Cemetery – a vast 400-acre cemetery in the Bronx, where many of New York City’s arts, business and civic leaders are buried, including jazz trumpeter Miles Davis, Mayor Fiorello LaGuardia, author Herman Melville, newspaper publisher Joseph Pulitzer, women’s rights movement leader Elizabeth Cady Stanton, and department store magnate Frank Woolworth. The cemetery is composed of an unprecedented collection of artistically important memorials set in the Landscape-Lawn style.
The Niagara Hotel – A product of Niagara Falls’ history of tourism, industry and commerce, the 1925 structure is the last and only surviving major hotel of those that once dominated the city’s downtown.
Washington Square Historic District – Oswego’s historic civic and religious center that developed around a village green established in 1797.
Lustron Houses of Jermain Street Historic District – a remarkably intact Albany district of mid-20th century prefabricated steel homes manufactured by the Lustron Corporation to respond to the post-World War II housing demand.
New York Central Passenger and Freight Station – an outstanding example of an Art Deco train station built in 1936 – a style representative of the last gasp of major railroad station construction in the United States – in Syracuse, a major transportation hub in New York State.
Listing these properties on the state and national registers can assist their owners in revitalizing the structures. Listing will make them eligible for various public preservation programs and services, such as matching state grants and federal historic rehabilitation tax credits.
The New York State Board for Historic Preservation is an independent panel of experts appointed by the governor. The Board also consists of representatives from the following state organizations: Council of Parks; Council on the Arts; Department of Education; Department of State and Department of Environmental Conservation. The function of the Board is to advise and provide recommendations on state and federal preservation programs, including the State and National Registers of Historic Places, to the State Historic Preservation Officer, who in New York is the State Parks Commissioner.
The State and National Registers are the official lists of buildings, structures, districts, landscapes, objects and sites significant in the history, architecture, archeology and culture of New York State and the nation. There are nearly 90,000 historic buildings, structures and sites throughout the state listed on the National Register of Historic Places, individually or as components of historic districts.
During the nomination process, the State Board submits recommendations to the State Historic Preservation Officer. The properties may be listed on the New York State Register of Historic Places and then nominated to the National Register of Historic Places where they are reviewed and, once approved, entered on the National Register by the Keeper of the National Register in Washington, D.C.
The recommended properties listed by county are as follows:
STATE REVIEW BOARD RECOMMENDATIONS
1. Lustron Houses at Jermain Street Historic District – Albany
2. Centerville Town Hall – Centerville
3. Lancaster District School No. 6 – Lancaster
4. Annunciation School – Buffalo
5. Buffalo Tennis and Squash Club – Buffalo
6. Harlow C. Curtis Building – Buffalo
7. Sardinia Old Town Hall – Sardinia
8. The Baptist Church of Springville – Springville
9. Richmond Avenue Methodist-Episcopal Church – Buffalo
10. James Wilder Farmstead – Burke
11. Methodist-Episcopal Church of Windham Centre – Windham
12. Woodward Road Stone Arch Bridge – East Durham
13. Tannersville Main Street Historic District – Tannersville
14. Emmanuel Episcopal Church – Little Falls
15. Hiram Hubbard House – Champion
16. Lowville G.A.R. Soldier’s Monument – Lowville
17. Engleside – Dansville
18. Kilts Farmstead – Palatine Bridge
New York City
19. Garment Center Historic District – Manhattan
20. General Society of Mechanics and Tradesmen – Manhattan
21. New York Congregational Home for the Aged – Brooklyn
22. The Woodlawn Cemetery – Bronx
23. Tremont Baptist Church – Bronx
24. The Niagara – Niagara Falls
25. Sylvan Beach Union Chapel – Sylvan Beach
26. New York Central Passenger and Freight Station – Syracuse
27. St. Andrew’s Cemetery – Walden
28. Milliken-Smith Farm – Montgomery
29. Benjamin Franklin Gates House – Albion
30. John Shelp Cobblestone House – Middleport
31. Historic and architectural resources in Oswego, including the Washington Square Historic District – Oswego
32. Oswego Yacht Club – Oswego
33. Johannes Isaac Blauvelt House – Blauvelt
34. Contempora House – New City
35. Saugerties Public Library – Saugerties
36. Forward wreck site – Lake George
37. Stoops Hotel – Battenville
38. Presbyterian Rest for Convalescents – White Plains
39. Soundview Manor – White Plains
Missle Silo Open House in Lewis, NY Sunday
The Australian Architect and Designer Alexander Michael is conducting tours of his restored Atlas Missile Silo (video) in Lewis, Essex County, NY this Sunday October 26th from 11:00AM to 2:00 PM. This is the first (and perhaps the only) time the silo will be open to the public. The Lewis site is the only known restored missile silo in the United States (and perhaps the world). After over 11 years of restoration the restored command control center is an amazing sight.
The silo is Boquett 556-5, an Atlas-F ICBM silo designated by the US Air Force in 1960 (local report) and also known as Lewis Missile Base.
NY Council for the Humanities 400th Programs
The New York Council for the Humanities has announced a host of special programs and initiatives in conjunction with the upcoming Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial including:
Mini Grants of up to $2500 for the planning and execution of public programs related to the 400th.
Reading Between the Lines reading and discussion series focused on 400th-related themes.
Speakers in the Humanities 400th lectures available to New York State groups for a nominal fee.
Speakers in the Schools 400th lectures available free of charge to any New York State high school.
To learn more about the 400th and the Council’s key role in its celebration visit the 400th website.
A New Book on Seneca Falls and Women’s Rights
Tim Stafford over at Books and Culture, has reviewed Sally McMillen’s new book Seneca Falls and the Origins of the Women’s Rights Movement. He kicks it off with a revealing story about the place of women’s history among leading historians:
“Chatting casually with historian James McPherson, Davidson professor Sally McMillen learned that he was co-editing a series called Pivotal Moments in American History. “Surprised by what I did not hear, I responded, ‘But you have nothing on women!’ He looked at me and asked, ‘Do you have any ideas?’ ‘Well, as a start,’ I answered, ‘Seneca Falls.'” [Read more…] about A New Book on Seneca Falls and Women’s Rights
Rochester, Buffalo Preservationists Join Forces
The directors of two Buffalo area preservation groups voted to merge their organizations late last week. Both the Landmark Society of the Niagara Frontier and the Preservation Coalition of Erie County will now be merged into one organization – Preservation Buffalo Niagara.
According to Buffalo Business First, the decision comes after nine months of negotiations. Preservation Buffalo Niagara will be governed by a 21-member board; 10 of the seats will be filled from existing directors and the remaining spots will be filled anew. [Read more…] about Rochester, Buffalo Preservationists Join Forces
This Week’s Top New York History News
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8 Killer Digitial Libraries and Archives
The Online Education Database has posted a nice list of 250+ Killer Digital Libraries and Archives – I’ve pulled out those from New York here:
Digital Metro New York: A collaborative effort to support digitization projects involving significant collections held by METRO member libraries in New York City and Westchester County. Scroll down the page to find the list of collections, which range from Brooklyn Democratic Party and WWII scrapbooks to fashion design history databases and more.
Hamilton College Digital Collections: This site provides access to thousands of pages of unique and rare materials held by the Hamilton College Library. Choose from the Civil War collection, the Shaker collection, or the illustrations gallery, which displays a selection of images and illustrations found on documents in the previous two collections.
Hudson River Valley Heritage: This site contains collections from New York’s state libraries, colleges, historical societies and more. You’ll discover images, texts, maps and other documents that chronicle New York’s Hudson River Valley’s history.
New York State Documents: For many recent State documents, the catalog record contains a link to an electronic version of the document. Many of these online publications are scanned documents, which were created by the library and made available online as PDF (portable document format) files.
Rediscovering New York History and Culture: RNYH&C is a program of the New York State Archives provides a single point of entry to a vast array of resources. You can discover digital collections such as the “Franklin Automobile Photograph Collection,” and online exhibits such as the “Women& Social Movements in the United States, 1830 – 1930.”
State University History Archives: The Department of History at the University at Albany is one of the pioneers in wedding historical scholarship and teaching with digital technologies. Current projects are listed in the left column, with information about the collections shown on this page as you scroll down.
Syracuse University Digital Library: The Syracuse University Library Digital Collections site provides digital collections from Syracuse University Library (SUL), including the Special Collections Research Center and others that have participated in collaborative projects with SUL.
USMA Digital Collections: At the United States Military Academy Library’s Digital Collections you can gain access to Alexander Hamilton’s papers, to Civil War maps, to class yearbooks, and more from this West Point academy.
Stolen 1612 Map of Canada to be Auctioned?
Thanks to The Map Room we learn that a rare copy of Samuel de Champlain’s 1612 map of Canada set to be auctioned at Sotheby’s next month, may be the same map discovered missing from Harvard University in 2005.
The Calgary Herald has the whole story:
The Harvard map was found missing in 2005 during an FBI investigation into a string of thefts from major libraries in the U.S. and Britain that saw about 100 cartographic treasures – worth an estimated $3 million US in total – sliced from centuries-old atlases and exploration journals.
Massachusetts antiquarian E. Forbes Smiley, a well-known collector and dealer of rare maps, eventually admitted to the thefts and is serving three years in a U.S. prison for the crime.
He helped authorities recover many of the stolen maps as part of a plea bargain, but the 1612 Champlain map removed from Harvard’s Houghton Library was not among those he admitted taking.
The Champlain map is one of top-priced items at Sotheby’s Nov. 13 Natural History, Travel, Atlases and Maps sale. According to the Calgary Herald the map was the first to be published to show Montreal, Lake Champlain and the Great Lakes as a chain of connected waterways.
Presidential Historian Wins Archives and History Award
Best selling author and historian Michael Beschloss, a scholar named by Newsweek magazine as “the nation’s leading Presidential historian,” will be in Albany, Wednesday, Oct. 22 to receive the New York State Archives Partnership Trust’s 2008 Empire State Archives and History Award. The hour-long conversation on the upcoming Presidential election and awards ceremony will be held at The Egg, Center for the Performing Arts at the Empire State Plaza at 7:30 p.m.
According to New York State Archivist and Trust CEO Christine W. Ward, Mr. Beschlosswas selected to receive the award based upon his rich and distinguished career as one of this nation’s leading interpreters of the American Presidency. “We are honored to, once again, have Mr. Beschloss return to Albany as we honor him for his decades of extraordinary scholarship on many of the nation’s most recent presidents, as well as the components of Presidential character,” she said.
A native of Chicago, Mr. Beschloss has an extraordinary academic pedigree, having attended Andover, Williams (where he studied under the legendary Williams’ College professorJames McGregor Burns) and Harvard. In recognition of his accomplishments to the world of academe, he has received three honorary doctorates.
A prolific contributor to the national dialogue on the American Presidency, Mr. Beschloss has written nine books on American Presidents. His most recent two books, Presidential Courage (2007) and The Conquerors (2002), were each on the New York Times bestseller list for months. Presidential Courage was #1 on the Washington Post bestseller list. The Conquerors was Amazon.com’s top bestselling history book of the year.
Mr. Beschloss’s previous books include two volumes on Lyndon Johnson’s secret tapes, which a New York Times editorial called “an important event,” and The Crisis Years, which the New Yorker called the “definitive” history of John Kennedy and the Cold War.
A regular commentator of national prestige, Mr. Beschloss serves as the NBC NewsPresidential Historian, the first time a major television network created such a position. He appears on all NBC News programs, hosting a regular segment on NBC’s Today show called “American Minute with Michael Beschloss.” He is also a commentator on PBS’s “The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer” and writes a regular column for Newsweek called “Traveling through History with Michael Beschloss.”
The Empire State Archives and History Award was inaugurated in 2005 to honor national figures who, through their achievements, have advanced the understanding and uses of history within our society. Previous winners have included: C-SPAN founder and CEO Brian Lamb, actor Sam Waterston for his efforts to bring Abraham Lincoln and other characters from U.S. history to life on stage and screen, and Pulitzer Prize winning writer and historian Doris Kearns Goodwin.
Title sponsors for the New York State Archives Partnership Trust’s signature event are Time Warner Cable and History. Premier sponsors include: Einhorn Yaffee Prescott Architecture and Engineering P.C., Greenberg Traurig, Key Private Bank, New York State United Teachers, Times Union, and New York Council for the Humanities. Supporting sponsors include: 2K Design; 74 State; Berkshire Bank; Chateau LaFayette Reneau; Edward Ryan; Janney Montgomery Scott LLC; McCadam Cheese; WAMC Northeast Public Radio; Whiteman Osterman & Hanna LLP, Attorneys at Law; and Wojeski & Co., CPAs, P.C.
Tickets for the Empire State Archives and History Award are $10 and are available at The Egg Box Office. Invitations to a private fund-raising reception with Mr. Beschloss may be obtained by calling (518) 474-1228.