Main Content


Eavesdropping newsletter

Banner photo

Hillsdale United Methodist Church, Howard County


Annual Historic Preservation AwardsAwards

Standouts in preserving cultural resources were presented with 2019 Indiana Historic Preservation Awards at Preserving Historic Places: Indiana’s Statewide Preservation Conference in Evansville this past April.



*Cultural Resource Analysts, Inc.

The staff of the Indiana office of Cultural Resource Analysts, Inc. will be receiving the 2019 Indiana Archaeology Award for their recent work in Evansville.  In the past few years, they have undertaken several large-scale archaeological projects in the Evansville area that were both well executed and contributed to understanding of the history of the city.  In 2017, Aaron Harth, Lisa Kelley, Tanya Faberson and Andrew Martin investigated Evansville Bee Slough Dump, which provided valuable information on land use, consumption, and lifeways of Evansville residents in the early 1900’s. That same year, Lisa Kelley and Andrew Martin oversaw a project that investigated an area of the city known as Baptisttown, which was the center of the African American community in post-bellum Evansville. The archaeological investigations completed by CRA provided insight on the kind of goods were available to Baptisttown families as they adjusted to post-war life in Evansville. Both of these projects were well researched, and provide important reference materials for historical archaeology and archaeology in an urban setting. 

*Friends of Historic Allen Chapel AME Church (Terre Haute)

The Friends of Historic Allen Chapel, Inc. will receive the award for “Outstanding Grant-Assisted Rehabilitation” for their work on the 1913 Allen Chapel AME Church in Terre Haute.  In 2017, the DNR Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology awarded this organization with a competitive matching grant of $33,650 from the federal Historic Preservation Fund.  The Friends matched this amount dollar-for-dollar in their rehabilitation project that was completed last year.  Work included replacing crumbled plaster inside the two stair towers, rehabilitating one badly deteriorated staircase that was unsafe for use, and cleaning and refinishing some interior woodwork features.  All work conformed to established historic preservation standards.  The group was eligible for this federal pass-thru grant from the National Park Service because they are a 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization, and the building is listed in the National Register of Historic Places.

*Denton Floyd Real Estate Group/M. Fine and Sons Building (New Albany)

The Indiana Historic Preservation Award for “Outstanding Rehabilitation Tax Credit Project” will be presented to Denton Floyd Real Estate Group for their work on the M. Fine and Sons Building in New Albany, Indiana.  The M. Fine and Sons Building was constructed in 1922 and designed by the noted Louisville architectural firm of Joseph and Joseph.  The rehabilitation involved the conversion of the approximately 115,000 square foot industrial building into 108 units of senior housing.  Of particular note was the restoration of all of the original steel industrial windows, which totaled approximately 5,500 square feet and 7,310 individual panes.

*Pleasant Ridge Neighborhood Association (Charlestown)
The National Register staff will present an Indiana Historic Preservation Award to the Charlestown Pleasant Ridge Neighborhood Association in recognition of their outstanding grassroots efforts to preserve the Pleasant Ridge Historic District. In 1941, the U.S. Government built the Indiana Army Ammunition Plant near Charlestown, creating an influx of 27,000 workers who needed housing. The Gunnison Homes Company built hundreds of prefabricated houses and by 1943, ammunition plant workers and their families were moving into the modest houses. The Charlestown Pleasant Ridge Neighborhood Association was founded five years ago and has rehabilitated houses, sponsored neighborhood events, and nominated Pleasant Ridge to the National Register, making it the first area of WW II worker housing in Indiana to achieve this status.

Historic Preservation Month Photo Contest Winners

The DHPA’s 2019 Historic Preservation Month photo contest is complete! There were a total of four winners in the following categories: Best Overall Photo (Edited), Best Overall Photo (Unedited), Most Artistic, and Best Overall Resource. A sincere thank you to everyone you participated and congratulations to the winners.
The 2019 Historic Preservation Month photo contest had four winners this year.

They are:

West Baden HotelBest Overall Photo (Edited)
Terry Steiner, Greentown
Ceiling of West Baden Springs Hotel




Hillsdale United Methodist Church

Best Overall Photo (Unedited)
Lynne Kurtz, Kokomo
Hillsdale United Methodist Church, Howard County




Most ArtisticCrown Hill Cemetery
Frank Sauer, Indianapolis
Crown Hill Cemetery Entry Gates and Waiting Station, Indianapolis




Indiana Repertory Theater

Best Overall Resource
Eric Wood, Indianapolis
Indiana Repertory Theater, Indianapolis





A sincere thank you to everyone you participated and congratulations to the winners.

Recent Listings on the National Register

National RegisterFrom January, 2019, through March, 2019, Indiana added 15 listings to the National Register of Historic Places.  These listings—a farm; a commercial building; commercial, residential, and industrial  historic districts; a school; a state park; covered and stone bridges; a library; and an industrial building—have added approximately 416 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 go to https://secure.in.gov/apps/dnr/shaard/welcome.html.   


AGrable Cemeteryncestor reclaim family cemetery 

While doing ancestry in July of 2016, two friends (Pam Prathaftakis and Sandy Lawson) went to visit the Grable Cemetery in Adams Township, because her 2X Great grandmother was buried there. The first visit told them they needed to do something about the cemetery.  It was almost forgotten and lost. After contacting the DNR-DHPA, they corresponded with the Adams Township Trustee on the condition of the cemetery, who eventually gave them permission to start the cleanup of the cemetery. With the help of farmers of the area, some famiy members, and other dedicated volunteers, they removed over 100 plus dead trees from the cemetery, brush and briars to open the area up. The group was able to locate, clean, and reset 36 headstones to date.  They have found other bases, but yet to locate the headstones for these bases. They also created a memorial area with bricks engraved with the deceased names whose headstones could not be located.  Lastly, a flag pole and flag has been set to honor the veterans that rest here. Well done Pam and Sandy. Your work helped save this cemetery to time and nature.

We like to champion the work of individuals doing great work in the preservation field.  If you know someone we should honor in our preservation e-newsletter, contact us at DHPA@dnr.IN.gov.







New Resources

The Indiana State Library has a new resource, Fire Insurance Maps Online (FIMo).  It contains Sanborn, Baist, and other insurance maps for over 300 Indiana cities and towns covering the mid-1880s to mid-1960s.  The best feature is that you can put in a modern address or geographic coordinates and it will show you what maps are available for that location and allow you to overlay the historic map over modern Google imagery.  You can then download images to a flash drive or print them.  This resource is only available on location, but the trip to the Indiana State Library in Indianapolis is worth the trip!

The Indiana Historic Buildings, Bridges, and Cemeteries Map

mapThe Indiana Historic Buildings, Bridges, and Cemeteries map (IHBBC) is a great resource! This new map, which replaces our former SHAARD GIS map, is run by Esri and can be accessed online within the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology via the SHAARD Online Database link. Once you get to the SHAARD Database page, click on the Indiana Historic Buildings, Bridges, and Cemeteries Map link. This will allow you to launch the app and the user can begin to explore the map.

For returning users, this map has many new features and improvements to the old SHAARD GIS map. A User Guide is available and will be updated as new features and updates are added to the map.

Contact Megan Copenhaver (mcopenhaver@dnr.IN.gov) for specific questions or suggestions concerning the map. Thanks and happy searching!

Discover Indiana is back in action!

Discover Indiana is a smart phone app and website that helps you visit Indiana’s history with easy access to the great stories and locations of the 19th state. The project is a joint venture of DHPA, the Indiana University-Purdue University at Indianapolis’s Public History Program, and the Indiana Historical Society.  Other partners have included Indiana Landmarks and Indiana Humanities.  More tours and sites are being planned and will be added this summer.  Download the app at your app store or visit at https://indyhist.iupui.edu/

Historic Preservation Grant Application Packets Available

In early August, the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology will have Historic Preservation Fund (HPF) grant application packets available for FY2020 at the DHPA website: http://www.in.gov/dnr/historic/3671.htm#hpf.

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

In Memoria

Indiana lost some powerful preservationists recently.   Here is a list of just a few we know about.  If you know of others we should highlight, please let us know at DHPAConnect@dnr.IN.gov.

  • Stan Cox:  He was born in Brazil, Indiana.  Standiford had a thirty-two plus year career with Eli Lilly and Company.  Standiford funded projects involving the restoration and preservation of African-American historical sites. He supported the restoration of Beech Church (Rush County), the last remaining structure associated with the oldest free black settlement.  Additionally, he was instrumental in obtaining 501©(3) federal tax exempt status for The Lost Creek Grove Restoration and Preservation Foundation, Inc.
  • Joy Sacopulos, a tireless community advocate and key preservationist in Terre Haute.  Joy is a founder and continuing volunteer of TREES, Inc., the Friends of Historic Allen Chapel, the Indiana Urban Forest Council, the Organ Donation Awareness Council of the Wabash Valley and the Terre Haute Crow Committee, Inc. She was a founder of Planned Parenthood of the Wabash Valley and Sacred Landmarks of Downtown Terre Haute.
  • Sarah Margaret “Sally” Waldkoetter graduated from Scottsburg High School in 1955. She spent most of her career in nursing, but returned to south central Indiana and when the town of Vallonia considered demolishing the two-story brick former hotel building in the 1990s, a group of local residents, including Sally, rallied to save and restore the 1914 landmark. Sally led the Joe Jackson Hotel Restoration Committee for the next 20 years, successfully applying for and overseeing two HPF grants to stabilize the roof and masonry, and rehabilitate the storefront. She was determined to see the project continue, organizing fundraisers like summer fish frys. All 25 windows were rehabilitated by offering the cost of each one as a donation that would include an acknowledgment of the gift. Sally’s tenacity was an integral part of the Joe Jackson Hotel rehabilitation, and the ongoing grassroots effort was a major consideration in a recent $225,000 grant awarded to the project by OCRA. Although Sally may not have been able to see the project complete, it wouldn’t have gotten this far without her, and she will be missed.

Internships at DHPA

The deadline for applications for fall internships with DHPA is July 15. These unpaid positions are an excellent opportunity for students to learn about real world history, archaeology and preservation jobs; acquire new 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 at DHPAConnect@dnr.IN.gov.