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Eavesdropping newsletter

May 2020 Issue

George and Margaret Wolcott House, LaGrange County

George and Margaret Wolcott House, LaGrange County.

Happy Historic Preservation Month!

Every May the DHPA helps plan events to celebrate Indiana’s architectural heritage. Here are some of the things we’ve got planned.

Photo Contest: The DHPA held its first ever all-digital photo contest this year. There were a few bumps, but overall it turned out great. Lots of lovely photos to look at, a new at-home judging process, and five gorgeous winners. View winners’ photos. Thank you to everyone who submitted photos and to our judges for their flexibility. Congratulations to:

  • Thomas Sprunger of Monroe, who won the Altered category with his photo of an old schoolhouse in Hartford Township, Adams County.
  • Greg Sommer of Ridgeville, who won the Artistic category with his photo of the Ward Township District #5 School in Deerfield.
  • Kim Stone of Independence, Kentucky, who won the Black and White category with her photo of the Soldiers and Sailors Monument at Christmas in downtown Indianapolis.
  • Melissa Robertson of Lafayette, who won the Color category with her photo of the Fowler Theater in Fowler.
  • Makinsey Murphy of Pennville, who won the Kids category with her photo of a log cabin in Balbec.

Poster: Many may have already seen this year’s poster at their local library or history/preservation organization. In case you haven’t, DHPA is featuring some of Indiana’s Coca Cola bottling plants. Many thanks to the DNR photographers for taking photos for us. If you would like a complimentary copy of the poster, email us.

Building of the Day: Continuing our Coca Cola theme, DHPA will be highlighting different Coca Cola bottling plants on Facebook with a Building of the Day feature. Some plants are still standing and others are gone. We’ll be posting a variety of historic photos, old DHPA survey photos, and current photos. Follow us on Facebook.

Cast/Pressed Metal Survey: Later in May DHPA is going to be asking for your help. We are looking to find any cast/pressed metal buildings in your local community. Please let us know if one (or several) of these buildings are in your town. Please heed any travel advisories and maintain social distancing, but take a picture and email the address of the building to aborland@dnr.IN.gov. More information will be coming on what exactly cast/pressed metal facades are, why Indiana has a bunch of them, and how to identify them.

Recent Listings on the National Register

From November 2019 through December 2019, Indiana added five listings to the National Register of Historic Places. These listings—houses, residential historic districts, and an industrial building—have added approximately 186 historic resources to the National and State registers. For information on Indiana properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places and the Indiana Register of Historic Sites and Structures, access the SHAARD database. View a PDF of recent listings.

Cancellation of Preserving Historic Places 2020


Because of the pandemic, stay at home orders, and budget restraints, the Preserving Historic Places event will be canceled for 2020. Organizers are already looking to 2021 (we’ll be staying in South Bend) and planning for the next conference. Everyone stay safe and we’ll see you next year.

Archaeology Month

If your organization is planning on hosting an Indiana Archaeology Month event this year, please complete and submit the event host form. Hosting an event during Indiana Archaeology Month can be a creative and exciting activity. Past activities have included: archaeology lectures, exhibits with specifically developed handouts, mock excavations, archaeology laboratory open houses, archaeology children’s activities, artifact identifications and more.

The benefits of participating in Indiana Archaeology Month and promoting archaeology can include, but are not limited to:

  • Archaeological resources facilitate heritage tourism and contribute to economic development in various ways in Indiana communities.
  • Archaeology promotes community involvement and provides information on our individual and collective histories, assisting in enhancing and planning our futures.
  • The information gained from archaeological sites gives Hoosiers an enhanced appreciation, interpretation and awareness of the importance of archaeological resources and their role in understanding past cultures and historic events in our state, as well as promoting knowledge of the contributions of cultural diversity to our state’s development and heritage.
  • Archaeology can contribute to young people’s understanding of the past and its importance.

We look forward to interesting and fun events during this September’s 25th annual statewide celebration of Indiana archaeology.

Historic Preservation Grant Application Packets Available

In early August, the Division of Historic Preservation & Archaeology will have Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) grant application packets available for FY2021 on this web page.

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

Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) Archaeology Category Announcement

The DHPA has decided to make a change to applicant eligibility for the Archaeology category only. In order to facilitate more potential archaeology projects through the HPF program, private, for-profit entities will be eligible to apply for and receive grant funds. However, federal regulations prohibit grant recipients from making a financial profit as a direct result of the grant-assisted project. Only direct costs associated with the project will be eligible for reimbursement. Note also that state and federal auditing and income tax regulations prevent the DHPA from making a grant award to an organization that is not incorporated, or that does not otherwise exist as a legal entity.

Proposed Fiscal Year 2021 evaluation criteria and priorities for the Archaeology category can be found at this web page. Please note that the priorities are only one component of a grant proposal. Application packets from last year’s grant cycle can be found here, which may provide insight into the process. Application packets will be updated for FY2021 and posted online by Aug. 1, 2020. The deadline for proposals is Friday, Oct. 2, 2020 (this is a received deadline, not a postmark deadline).

The maximum grant amount for Archaeology is $50,000. Archaeology grants are funded at a 70/30 ratio, with HPF providing 70% of the project cost (up to $50,000), and the applicant providing a minimum match of 30%.

If you have questions about applying to the HPF Archaeology category, please contact Steve Kennedy (317-232-6981) or Malia Vanaman (317-232-1648).

Internships at DHPA

The deadline for applications for summer internships is March 15th, while fall internships is July 15th.  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.

DHPA Staff Programs

Staff from the DHPA offer free programs around the state on a variety of topics including archaeology, Underground Railroad, cemeteries, and preservation. If you would like to learn more about these topics, check out the Calendar of Events and find the talk closest to you. Or, if your organization is looking for a speaker; contact the DHPA for potential speakers and topics. 

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.