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DNR to honor historic preservation standouts
Start Date: 4/16/2018
Event Description:

Standouts in preserving cultural resources will be presented with 2018 Indiana Historic Preservation Awards at the statewide historic preservation conference this week in Columbus.

The DNR Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology (DHPA) will present the awards during the “Preserving Historic Places” conference in Columbus on Wednesday, April 18. The DHPA will then present the Hoosier Preservationist Award, the highest award it bestows, on Thursday, April 19.

The DHPA presents awards annually to recognize outstanding efforts in historic preservation and archaeology. As the State Historic Preservation Office, the DHPA oversees the federally funded Historic Preservation Fund grant program, the federal Reinvestment Historic Tax Credit program, and the state’s Historic Homeowner Tax Credit program. The agency also functions as the central repository for historic structure and archaeological site records.

The awards to be presented are:

Hoosier Preservationist Award: This award is being present to David Baker, recently retired director of the Indianapolis Historic Preservation Commission (IHPC). Baker worked for 30 years championing historic preservation in Indianapolis. Baker arrived at IHPC in 1984 as an architectural reviewer and became administrator in 1987, a position he’s held for 30 of the commission’s 50 years of existence. Baker brought a level of knowledge and expertise to his role. When Baker arrived, IHPC oversaw five historic districts. Today, that number has grown to 12, in addition to five conservation districts and 13 individual properties, including Circle Theater and Old City Hall.

Indiana Archaeology Award: This award is being presented to the Tippecanoe County Historical Association, The Archaeological Conservancy, and the Roy Whistler Foundation for their creation and stewardship of the Ouiatenon Preserve in Tippecanoe County. The creation of the preserve has combined the protection of both cultural and natural resources, has been a positive collaborative effort, and has afforded protection of an extremely important archaeological site (the original 1700s era Fort Ouiatenon location) and others within the approximately 200 acres surrounding it.

Historic Preservation Award: The DHPA chose the Harrison County Cemetery Restoration Team to receive this award for its restoration of the Greenbrier and Cold Friday cemeteries. The team was formed in 2004 to conduct research on cemeteries, conduct repair work on those stones in need of repair or cleaning, and to serve as advocates for the cemeteries in the county. Since 2004, this all-volunteer group has worked on more than 30 cemeteries in the county since inception. In the fall of 2017, the team decided to work on two cemeteries (Greenbrier and Cold Friday) surrounded by Harrison-Crawford State Forest. But, before the groups organized to undertake the restoration, both cemeteries were vandalized. About 50 tombstones were pushed over or broken. Without hesitation, the Harrison County Cemetery Restoration Team fixed the damage in a timely manner. The work conducted by this team has helped save and preserve the history of Harrison County. Their work is professional, thoughtful, and respectful.

Outstanding Grant-Assisted Rehabilitation Award: The DHPA grant staff will present the award to the Heritage Preservation Society of Putnam County and the City of Greencastle for the rehabilitation of the Putnam County Civil War Soldier’s Monument. The monument was dedicated in 1870 to honor the 321 soldiers from Putnam County who died in the war. The memorial had deteriorated over the last 140 years. The Society received a $40,000 matching grant from the DHPA to repair and restore the monument, including replicating several missing pieces, installing new faces for 26 of the 40 massive sandstone blocks, and re-engraving the eroded names of soldiers to match the original appearance. This is a unique Civil War memorial, and the Society was dedicated to preserving it.

Outstanding Achievement in Identification of Post-World War II Resources: The DHPA’s registration & survey section is giving this award to Cultural Resource Analysts, Inc. (CRAI) for its work on “Residential Planning & Development in Indiana 1940-1973,” a statewide Multiple Property Document Form (MPDF) for the National Register of Historic Places. Alan Higgins, director of Architectural and Cultural History at CRAI in Evansville, was the project manager. He and his team spent 1 ½ years surveying, researching, and evaluating the almost 900,000 housing units constructed in Indiana between 1940 until 1973. The end result was a 337-page document submitted to and accepted by the National Register of Historic Places on Feb. 27, 2018.

Contact Information:
Name: Steve Kennedy
Phone: 317-232-6981
Email: SKennedy@dnr.IN.gov
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