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State Historical Society of Iowa Press Release

For immediate release January 02, 2013

Contact: Jeff Morgan, Jeff.Morgan@iowa.gov, (515) 281-3858

DCA announces historic preservation grant awards

More than $91,000 awarded to 12 Iowa cities and counties

DES MOINES –The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs has awarded $91,051 to 12 Iowa cities and counties to support historic preservation programs across the state.

The grant awards are from DCA’s Certified Local Government program, a partnership between local, state and national governments focused on promoting historic preservation at the local level. Iowa has the largest CLG program in the nation, and it is administered by DCA’s State Historic Preservation Office in conjunction with the National Park Service.

Participation in the CLG program offers local governments access to a wide range of resources, including expert technical advice from the National Park Service and state staff, participation in a robust preservation network, and access to federal funding.

The list of 2013 CLG grants award recipients follows:

(Grant Recipient)
(Grant Amount)
(Project Title)
(Project Description)
(Quote from Local Contact)
(Local Contact Information)

Allamakee County
$5,000
National Register Nomination of Lansing’s Commercial District
The Allamakee County Historic Preservation Commission and Main Street Matters, Inc., will prepare a nomination to the National Register of Historic Places for Lansing’s historic Main Street. Lansing, nestled between two bluffs on the western shore of the Mississippi River, was settled in 1849 and construction of the commercial area began in the 1850s. Today, the historic downtown core is composed of buildings built of brick and limestone, the latter because of the proximity of quarries with abundant and high quality stone. As part of this project, research will also be conducted on the stonemasons who were responsible for constructing much of Lansing’s business district.

“This is an exciting next step for Lansing. It is a deliberate part of our strategy to build community and attract more tourists and residents.” – Bruce Palmborg, Allamakee County Historic Preservation Commission Project Manager.

Contact Bruce Palmborg at 563-538-4658 or fullmoonorange@hotmail.com

Burlington
$4,000
2013 Preserve Iowa Summit in Burlington
Burlington was recently selected to host the 2013 Preserve Iowa Summit August 22-24, 2013. A partnership between the State Historic Preservation Office, the Burlington Historic Preservation Commission, Main Street Iowa, and Preservation Iowa, this educational summit is the only statewide gathering for professionals and volunteers involved in historic preservation in Iowa. The grant will be used to support educational expenses associated with the summit. The summit will include sessions on various aspects of historic preservation and downtown revitalization as well as educational tours.

“Downtown Burlington has an abundance of architectural gems that we are looking forward to sharing at the 2013 Preserve Iowa Summit. We are excited to have the opportunity to show off our commitment to preservation. The CLG grant will be very helpful in building a strong foundation to educate both local and statewide leaders about the importance of preservation.” – Beth Nickel, Burlington CLG grant project manager.

Contact Beth Nickel at 319-208-0045 or bnickel@greaterburlington.com

Charles City
$6,490
National Register Nomination of the Sherman Nursery Company Historic District
The Charles City Historic Preservation Commission will use this grant to prepare a National Register nomination for the Sherman Nursery Company Historic District. This property is approximately 20 acres and includes a limestone office building, three stone bridges, potting shed, and planting grounds. The Sherman Nursery Company was established in 1884 and grew rapidly in the 1910s and 1920s, becoming well known for its evergreens, fruit trees and cut roses. This project will formally recognize the Sherman family’s contributions to the Charles City community and the state’s nursery industry.

“Sherman Nursery and the Sherman family played a significant role in the cultural history and economic life of Charles City and the nursery industry. This property and its uniquely beautiful features incorporate elements distinctive to the late 19th century and not known to exist elsewhere in Iowa. These elements include a native limestone office building, three stone bridges, packing shed, carpenter shop, tool shed and planting grounds.” – Veronica Litterer, Charles City Director of Community Development.

Contact Veronica Litterer at 641-228-4234 or veronica@charlescitychamber.com

Fort Dodge
$2,451
Empowering the Local Community in Historic Window Rehabilitation
The Fort Dodge Historic Preservation Commission developed this educational program to educate the public, historic property owners and contractors about the rehabilitation of historic windows. This grant will fund a four-part educational series that will address energy trends, the myths associated with historic windows, energy efficiency and cost-effectiveness. A “hands-on” seminar with a window rehabilitation professional will also take place at historic McQuilkin Building in downtown Fort Dodge. The final session will showcase several completed window rehabilitation projects and discuss how to use various preservation financial incentives to undertake this work.

“This grant helps us begin much needed education on window maintenance and rehabilitation. Several recent renovation projects have replaced all the windows, citing energy efficiency. There are simple and effective techniques to address energy efficiency with historic windows. We want our community to know the options, to understand how rehabilitation is eligible for historic tax credits.” – Stephanie Houk Sheetz, Fort Dodge Senior City Planner.

Contact Stephanie Houk Sheetz at 515-576-8191 or ssheetz@fortdodgeiowa.org.

Greenfield
$10,200
National Register Nomination of the Adair County Courthouse Square Historic District
The Greenfield Historic Preservation Commission will use this grant to hire a consultant who will be responsible for preparing a National Register nomination for Greenfield’s courthouse square. Ringed with century-old brick commercial buildings, this commercial district is anchored by the National Register-listed Adair County Courthouse (1888). The Commission will use this project to maintain the momentum created by the recently rehabilitated Warren Opera House and Hotel Greenfield with the goal of encouraging additional rehabilitation downtown.

“During 2011-2012, a total of $7.5 million in restoration projects were completed for Hotel Greenfield, the Adair County Free Press, E.E. Warren Opera House and Hetherington buildings, all listed on the National Register of Historic Places and located within one block of the Greenfield town square. The CLG funding builds on the momentum existing among business, economic development, historic preservation and tourism partners in creating a destination site for lodging, shopping, dining, entertainment and education.” – Catherine Howe, Greenfield project manager.

Contact Catherine Howe at 641-745-0336 or cohowe@yahoo.com

Harrison County
$6,065
Murray Hall Rehabilitation Planning
Murray Hall, located in Little Sioux, is an excellent and well-preserved example of a late 19th century wood commercial building and is one of the few such extant buildings in Harrison County. This project, undertaken by the Harrison County Historic Preservation Commission, will entail an assessment of the building by a structural engineer who has experience with historic properties. The structural engineer will prepare structural drawings as well as a report that will analyze the building’s bowing walls and make recommendations for repair.

“Receiving this grant is key to our community’s being able to save its 1877 Murray Hall, a building on the National Register that played an important role in the early days of the community and still does. Without this grant, we would have been unable to secure the services of a structural engineer with expertise in historic preservation to advise us how to stabilize and save this building that is an example of early mercantile development in Iowa’s settlements, a local museum displaying artifacts and family photo documentaries that reflect the community connections of the people prominent in the city’s growth over the years, and a community center that is alive and vital in the community. We recognize that, without grants like this, many historic buildings would have been lost; with grants like this, they can be preserved and continue to play vital roles in their towns. Our historic preservation commission and our community are very grateful for grants that provide this crucial difference in preserving the past for the present and for the future.” – Madylon Perley, Harrison County Historic Preservation Commission member.

Contact Madylon Perley at 712-649-2991 at jperley@windstream.net

Johnson County
$7,668
National Register Nomination of the Johnson County Poor Farm
The Johnson County Historic Preservation Commission will use this grant to prepare a National Register nomination for the Johnson County Poor Farm. This historic property is a rare survival of the type of institution established in every Iowa county in the 19th century. Johnson County’s Poor Farm opened in 1855 and today is an important site documenting 19th century approaches to poverty and mental illness. This nomination will serve as a foundation for the future as Johnson County develops plans for the complex, secures funding for its preservation and creates educational opportunities for the public.

“Johnson County’s poor farm is one of the only remaining intact examples of its kind. This historic site provides an unusual educational and interpretive potential for the residents of Johnson County to learn more about their county’s past and the history of indigent and mental health care in the 19th and 20th centuries. The nomination of the Poor Farm to the National Register will recognize that Johnson County possesses such a wonderful historical resource and the buildings can be rehabilitated. Also, plans to develop the site as a historical display will move forward and the site will be preserved for future generations.” – Sara Sedlacek, Johnson County Grant Specialist.

Contact Jennifer Price at 319-594-9513 or jenniferprice1311@icloud.com

Jones County
$7,350
National Register nomination of Wapsipinicon State Park
This project involves a National Register nomination of the Wapsipinicon State Park Historic District. The nomination will include the park as it was in 1921, additions to the park through 1947 as well as a bridge, dam and waterworks east of the park. The Jones County Historic Preservation Commission will hire a consultant, who will complete historic contexts, evaluate the resources in the Park including archaeological sites within the boundary. Local volunteers will assist the consultant with research, fieldwork and photography.

“This project would not have been possible without the CLG grant. The Anamosa community utilizes this park on a daily basis 365 days a year. There is so much history in the park we felt it was important to do a nomination to the National Register so the park could be maintained for years to come. This park also draws in thousands of tourists each year; it is a destination not just a park.” – Rose Rohr, Jones County Historic Preservation Commission Chair.

Contact Rose Rohr at 319-480-0221 or rcrohr64@gmail.com

Madison County
$11,900
Winterset Courthouse Square Survey
With this grant, Madison County’s Historic Preservation Commission will conduct an intensive survey and evaluation of the historic and architectural resources of the Winterset Courthouse Square. This project includes a 9-block commercial area that is one of the state’s best-preserved courthouse squares. At the center of the downtown is the imposing stone courthouse of 1878. From its settlement and into the 19th century, the presence of skilled stonemasons, quality local stone and brick factories contributed to the establishment of this significant Iowa downtown.

“Winterset has one of the loveliest and best preserved courthouse square commercial districts in the state. The project will encourage rehabilitation of buildings to enhance the historic district. Another benefit of the project is the cooperation that will occur among nine local organizations whose members will learn new research skills.” – Brenda Hollingsworth, Madison County Historic Preservation Commission member.

Contact Brenda Hollingsworth at 515-462-4092 or hollingsworthb51@gmail.com

McGregor
$10,000
Predevelopment Project for the Historic First National Bank of McGregor
The McGregor Historic Preservation Commission will use this grant to develop preliminary designs for the rehabilitation of the 1863 First National Bank Building designed by McGregor architect E.C.W. Jacobs. A preservation architect will be hired to develop programming and concept planning documents, which will guide stakeholders in the building’s rehabilitation and establish fundraising goals for the work. When completed, this three-story building will become the permanent home for the McGregor-Marquette Center for the Arts.

“The CLG pre-development project will provide conceptual designs of the First National Bank Building and its adaptive reuse for the McGregor-Marquette Center for the Arts. These designs will be included in the marketing material for the capital campaign that is getting set to kick off. Located at the heart of the downtown commercial district, its rehab could serve as a demonstration of the process and the benefits of rehabilitation to other historic property owners who may follow suit. This grant also gives our CLG more experience with preservation activities so they are ready to tackle more preservation projects to protect the historic resources of McGregor.” – Lynette Sander, McGregor City Manager.

Contact Lynette L. Sander at 563-873-3795 or citymcgr@mchsi.com

Newton
$8,225
National Register Nomination of Newton’s Downtown Historic District
This National Register nomination project follows an intensive survey of Newton’s downtown completed by the city’s historic preservation commission last year. The nomination will address three historic contexts: the growth and development of downtown from 1846-1964, the rise of industry and the Maytag Company, and the architecture of downtown from 1866 to 1964. Approximately 60 buildings surrounding the Beaux-arts style county courthouse (1911) will be nominated to the National Register through this project.

“Our community is very excited to be given the opportunity to continue progress on preserving the Newton Downtown. The CLG Grant for our District Nomination Project means a great deal to the community and allows Newton to build on past CLG projects and the increasing momentum for the revitalization of the Newton Downtown.” – Erin Chambers, Newton city planner.

Contact Erin R. Chambers at 641-792-6622, Ext. 25 or erinc@newtongov.org

Osceola
$11,702
Intensive Survey and Evaluation of Downtown Osceola
The Osceola Historic Preservation Commission will undertake an intensive survey of its downtown, documenting the historical and architectural significance of buildings. The project will also determine whether Osceola’s downtown commercial area is eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. The buildings ringing the square are from the 1870s to the 20th century. Since its founding, Osceola has been an important agricultural market center for Clarke County. The historic preservation commission sees this project as a way to encourage the preservation and revitalization of its downtown.

“This grant will give us the funding to carefully research the buildings that surround our historic courthouse square. Most importantly, through public education, this project will reinforce recent momentum for revitalization and instill community pride in our historic downtown. We look forward to developing a deeper public awareness and appreciation of the history of our town and the importance of preserving it.” – Ann Diehl, Osceola Historic Preservation Commission chair.

Contact Ann Diehl at 641-342-4852 or abdiehl@mchsi.com

 

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The Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs is responsible for developing the state’s interest in the areas of the arts, history and other cultural matters with the advice and assistance from its two divisions: the State Historical Society of Iowa and the Iowa Arts Council. DCA preserves, researches, interprets and promotes an awareness and understanding of local, state and regional history and stimulates and encourages the study and presentation of the performing and fine arts and public interest and participation in them. It implements tourism-related art and history projects as directed by the General Assembly and designs a comprehensive, statewide, long-range plan with the assistance of the Iowa Arts Council to develop the arts in Iowa. More information about DCA is available at www.culturalaffairs.org.

 

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