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Indiana Department of Natural Resources

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“Vevay (Switzerland County) Historic District”
"Vevay (Switzerland County) Historic District”

Historic Preservation Grant Application Packets Available

The Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology now has Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) grant application packets available for FY2016 at the DHPA website:

There are three categories of projects: Architectural & Historical, Archaeological, and Acquisition & Development (rehabilitation). buildingPlease download the appropriate application packet and read all instructions carefully. The deadline for proposals is Friday, October 2, 2015 at 5:00 p.m. This is not a postmark deadline; all proposals must be received at the DHPA by the deadline.

If you have questions about the application packets or potential projects, please contact Steve Kennedy at / 317-232-6981 or Malia Vanaman at / 317-232-1648. Applicants are encouraged to contact the DHPA Grant Staff about their proposal.

If you plan to hand-deliver your proposal, please be advised that all visitors to the Indiana Government Center-South must enter via the Public Entrance at 302 West Washington Street and pass through a metal detector. In addition, security at the Department of Natural Resources now requires visitors to check in at the reception desk near the escalators and the 2nd floor DNR main office. The reception desk is staffed from 8:15 a.m. to 4:45 p.m. Visitors may be asked to leave deliveries with the reception desk. Please plan accordingly and allow plenty of extra time to clear these security check points.

Religious Properties and HPF Grants

churchThe National Park Service also recently announced a major change to the HPF Grant Program. The change makes some historic religious properties eligible for preservation grant assistance. Previously, historic buildings owned by religious organizations or used for religious purposes were not eligible to participate in the HPF program. To be eligible for the program, a historic religious property must already be listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Buildings can be listed in the National Register individually or as contributing resources within listed historic districts. Rehabilitation activities must meet federal preservation standards. Typical grant projects include roof and gutter repair or replacement, masonry rehabilitation, window repair, and other exterior measures to secure the building from water and weather. General remodeling, construction of additions, landscaping, signage, and purchase of furniture or equipment are not eligible activities under this program.

Reminder for Grant Applicants Proposing National Register Nominations

Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) grant proposals in the Architectural & Historical (A&H) category that seek to prepare nominations for National Register Historic Districts may require pre-verification of eligibility. 

Learn more. 

DHPA Welcomes New Colleague

HeidiDr. Henry and the DHPA are excited to welcome Dr. Henry’s sister, Dr. Heidi (Preservation Architect), to the office. Dr. Heidi was busy traveling the state during May to promote Historic Preservation Month. After all that activity she was feeling a little deflated so she took some time to rest. But now she’s recharged and ready to make some preservation progress.

Watch for her adventures (and Dr. Henry’s, too) on Facebook (#drheididhpa). If your organization/school wants her to come visit you, please let us know at

Staff Announcements

Division director Mitch Zoll recently announced the promotion of two DHPA staff members. Amy L. Johnson has been promoted to state archaeologist, and Rachel Sharkey is now archaeologist and records check coordinator.

Johnson has been with the division since 1991. She graduated with a B.S. and a M.A., both in anthropology, from Ball State University. Her main research interests are prehistoric archaeology (specifically the Adena and Hopewell periods), historic cemeteries, and public education regarding archaeological resources and cultural resources laws. She is Indiana’s state network coordinator for the Public Education Committee of the Society for American Archaeology. She has written/co-written numerous documents (e.g., “Early Peoples of Indiana”) regarding archaeology and archaeological outreach in Indiana, and she enjoys sharing information with the public regarding our irreplaceable cultural resources. She is Indiana’s first female state archaeologist.

Sharkey has been with the division since 2011. She graduated with a B.S. in archaeology and anthropology and a M.S. in human biology from the University of Indianapolis. Her research interests include prehistoric trophy-taking practices and paleopathology, and has a general love for all things related to Indiana archaeology. She has co-authored chapters in four books, including “The Analysis of Burned Human Remains” (2008), “Age Estimation of the Human Skeleton” (2010), “The Ethics of Anthropology and Amerindian Research” (2012), and “Human Variation in the Americas” (2010). At DHPA, She actively works on SHAARD progress, archaeology outreach (including Dr. Henry), and records checks.

Grants awarded to preserve local history across state

grants for preservationIn May, annual grants to strengthen and preserve Indiana’s history have been awarded for 11 projects. The grants total $363,341 in federal funds allotted by the DHPA. They will be matched by $465,456 in local and private funds, for a total investment of $828,797. The funds come from the National Park Service, a part of the U.S. Department of the Interior, which distributes federal funds to the states through the Historic Preservation Fund Program. Since 1974, the State has awarded more than $18 million to Indiana communities through the program.

  • Benton County: Ball State University’s anthropology department received a $49,929 grant to conduct an archaeological survey on 900 acres in Benton County. Three identified sites, including historic house sites listed on General Land Office maps, are targeted for additional study to determine their integrity and cultural significance.
  • Fishers: Conner Prairie received a $37,460 grant to repair and restore interior features of the 1823 Conner House at the Conner Prairie Museum. The house is used to interpret the residency of William Conner, a wealthy man in early Indiana history. Water infiltration and decades of public tours have damaged the walls, plaster, woodwork, wallpaper, interior finishes and the stair handrail.
  • Floyd County: The University of Indianapolis received a $50,000 grant to survey approximately 1,000 acres with high vulnerability for urban development or erosion. This includes areas in or along the Ohio River floodplain or areas that are under development pressure. The university also will survey on public or county park land to offer the public an opportunity to get involved.
  • Fort Wayne: The City of Fort Wayne received a $3,873 grant to produce brochures for the West End Neighborhood and The Landing historic districts in Fort Wayne. West End was listed in the National Register of Historic Places in 1984. The Landing was listed in the National Register in 1993. It’s next to the route of the Wabash & Erie Canal and derives its name from a docking and maneuvering bay on the canal. It is the largest concentration of early commercial buildings with high integrity in Fort Wayne.
  • Georgetown: The Town of Georgetown received a $10,000 grant for repairs and restoration to Georgetown State Bank, which was built in 1909. In 1981 the town purchased it for a town hall, and it served that purpose until 2009.
  • Indianapolis: The Indiana Medical History Museum received a $50,000 grant to rehabilitate the exterior of the Old Pathology Building at the Central State Hospital complex, which now houses the Indiana Medical History Museum. Built in 1896, it was a state of the art medical research and teaching facility until 1968. The building has been suffering from extended years of water infiltration problems.
  • Monrovia: The Hall Civic Association received a $10,150 grant for masonry repairs on the Hall School. The schoolhouse was built in 1911. Additions were constructed in the 1950s, 1970s and 1980s. The grant project is limited to the 1911 portion. The school was decommissioned in 2005, and in 2010 the building was transferred to the Hall Civic Association, which seeks to rehabilitate it for community purposes.
  • Muncie: The City of Muncie received a $50,000 grant to assist with rehabilitation of the Muncie Masonic Temple, now the Cornerstone Center for the Arts. The building is a six-story Collegiate Gothic style. When built in 1920, it was the largest Masonic Lodge in Indiana. The grant project will assist with exterior masonry repair, roof repair, and window-and-door repair and rehabilitation.
  • Newton County: Ball State University’s anthropology department received a $49,929 grant to conduct an archaeological survey of 800 acres in Newton County.
  • Shoals: The Town of Shoals received $2,000 to help prepare a nomination to the National Register of Historic Places for the Shoals Historic District. This district includes the commercial core of the community and a surrounding residential area. There are approximately 63 historic resources, including the 1857 Star Mill and the 1965 Post Office/Federal Building.
  • Washington: The Daviess County Commissioners received a $50,000 grant to stabilize and rehabilitate the stained glass skylight in the Daviess County Courthouse. The current courthouse was built in 1928 in the neoclassical revival style.

IMA gives mid-century Modernist masterpiece 21st-century treatment Miller House and Garden

The Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) has unveiled a new online archival collection for Miller House and Garden, one of the state’s— and nation’s— most highly regarded midcentury Modernist residences. Located in Columbus, and open for scheduled tours, the site is one of two National Historic Landmarks owned by the IMA. The robust digital collection contains 17,699 downloadable images, including architectural drawings, material samples, photographs and administrative documents related to the history of the property. The archive spans more than 50 years, from the initial planning and construction of the house to later renovations and interior design projects.

Miller House and Garden was commissioned in 1953 by industrialist and philanthropist J. Irwin Miller and his wife, Xenia Simons Miller. The property showcases the work of three of the world’s leading 20th-century architects, designers and landscape architects: Eero Saarinen, Alexander Girard and Dan Kiley. In 2000, the property was designated a National Historic Landmark while still being occupied by its original owners. In 2009, members of the Miller family donated the house and gardens, along with many of its original furnishings and the archives collection, to the IMA. The site opened to the public in May 2011, with tours made possible through the Columbus Area Visitors Center.

Visit the new digital collection online at

20th anniversary logoArchaeology Month in September

Each year, Indiana Archaeology Month features a “theme” or focus, and in 2015, it’s the 20th anniversary of Indiana Archaeology Month. Go to to learn more about Indiana Archaeology Month, access the calendar of official events, and learn how to obtain posters, purchase shirts, and more.

Genealogy and Local History Fair
The Indiana State Library offers a free Genealogy Fair every year.  This year it will be at the Indiana State Library on Saturday, Oct. 24, 2015 from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Admission is free and the fair is open to the general public.

To learn more,

Save the date For Preserving Historic PlacesStatewide Preservation Conference

Preserving Historic Places, Indiana’s annual conference on saving and revitalizing vintage buildings and neighborhoods, comes to Vincennes, April 27-29, 2016. The conference includes educational sessions, workshops, field sessions and tours, in addition to lectures by state and national preservation leaders.

Historical Topographic Maps - Preserving the Past

In 2009, USGS began the release of a new generation of topographic maps in electronic form, and is now complementing them with the release of high-resolution scans of more than 178,000 historical topographic maps of the United States.  Historic maps are snapshots of the nation's physical and cultural features at a particular time. Maps of the same area can show how an area looked before development and provide a detailed view of changes over time. The goal of The National Map's Historical Topographic Map Collection (HTMC) is to scan all the USGS historic topographic maps published by the USGS since the inception of the topographic mapping program in 1884. The Historical Topographic Map Collection (HTMC) exists online as a digital collection at and as a physical paper collection of maps in the USGS Clarence King Library in Reston, Virginia.

Internships at DHPA
Throughout the year, the DHPA frequently hosts interns from universities across the state (sometimes even from outside of Indiana).  These unpaid positions are an excellent opportunity for the students to learn about real world history, archaeology, and preservation jobs, acquire news skills, and deliver important products for the office.If you or someone you know is interested in interning at the DHPA, contact our office at 317/234-1268 or

Tell us what you think
We are always interested in your ideas. If there is a topic you would like to see in an upcoming issue of Eavesdropping, send us an e-mail at 

The Indiana Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology is now on Facebook. Please like our page and check back frequently for information on upcoming events, trivia, and helpful hints. If you have suggestions for topics or questions for future discussion let us know at