Historic Preservation Projects

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This archive contains a collection of projects generated by students in the Graduate Program in Historic Preservation within the School of Architecture, Planning, and Preservation. These research papers represent a wide variety of topics within the field of historic preservation incorporating subjects as diverse as heritage trails, sustainability practices and industrial and archaeological sites preservation.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 20 of 116
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    The World in an Oyster: The Architectural and Cultural Landscape of Canton's Canning Industry
    (2024-05-21) Hutter, Christopher; Kern, Susan; Sprinkle, John
    Canton, a neighborhood in southeast Baltimore listed on the National Register of Historic Places, is the former center of the food-canning industry that once dominated the economy in the city and in the state of Maryland. Canning was developed in France in the early 19th century and spread to America shortly thereafter, but it did not achieve widespread commercial success until the decades after the Civil War, when technical advancements made canning on an industrial scale possible. Baltimore canneries combined several natural features, including the Chesapeake Bay’s large oyster population and rich surrounding farmlands, with an influx of new immigrants from central and eastern Europe to create an industrial district that was the leading producer of canned foods in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Much as the canneries were designed architecturally to optimize their natural and commercial settings, the entire neighborhood of Canton came to be oriented, physically and socially, around the canneries, as a working-class neighborhood bound by ethnicity, language, religion, and occupation. Canning’s physical impact extended even beyond Baltimore to the Eastern Shore communities impacted by the increased demand for oysters, as sudden profits led to profound changes in the oystering industry that had long been the domain of rural watermen. Advances in technology like refrigeration and trucking largely obviated the need for Canton’s canneries in their designed form, and all of the firms along Boston Street closed down in the mid-20th century. Following a period of economic stagnation, redevelopment starting in the 1980s transformed Canton into a trendy, gentrified residential neighborhood by the turn of the century. Historic preservation had some success in retaining the area’s architectural fabric, but all of the former canneries have been demolished and largely replaced with apartment complexes and condominiums. The ways in which preservation handled, or perhaps failed to handle, this transition to modernity raise profound questions about the limits of preservation, especially in a maritime industrial context where the structures in question no longer support the prevailing economic impetus. Ultimately, new residents are drawn to Canton for both waterfront access and its historic associations, but when the forces that shaped the neighborhood have changed so dramatically, it is unclear what, exactly, has been preserved.
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    First Baptist Church, Lakeland, Architectural and Historical Survey.
    (2024) Adesina, Janet Ti-Oluwaleyi; Kern, Susan; Magalong, Michelle
    Religion and education are key foundational elements in the establishment of the built environment of Lakeland, a historic African American community, located adjacent to the University of Maryland in College Park, Maryland and in close proximity to the nation's capital, Washington DC. They make up paramount and essential elements to the history and culture of African American communities. This paper aims at providing a comprehensive architectural and historic survey report on the First Baptist Church of Lakeland, with the goal of preserving the remaining built environment’s cultural resources of the Lakeland community, facilitating efforts of restorative justice, and in developing a National Register of Historic Places nomination or a multiple property nomination, adding to the effort and great work already done by the Lakeland Community Heritage project. This study will use research and methodology from primary and secondary resources as well as 3D digital documentation to create a 3D model of the church. Digital documentation has proven vital in historically African American neighborhoods and the impact of urban renewal and segregation on the creation (and threat of demolition and neglect) of the built environment.
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    National Register Nomination for Captain William Henry Burtis House, Annapolis, Maryland
    (2024) Turner, II, Vincent P.; Kern, Susan; Magalong, Michelle
    The Burtis House, at 69 Prince George Street Annapolis, Maryland, is located within the Annapolis Historic District and is the last waterman’s house directly on the city waterfront. Burtis House was constructed circa 1882 and its period of significance spans from ca. 1882 to 1910, the years William Burtis, the house’s original owner, resided there. The property has a Maryland Inventory of Historic Properties (MIHP) number, AA-1152, although the nomination form, which was written in 1983, contains only cursory information about the house. The form has no information about who William Burtis was, why Burtis or the house is significant, or even context about its location. Recent research illuminates the history of the Burtis family, Burtis House, and the working-class Annapolis neighborhood it was once a part of, known as Hell Point. This study examines the historical context of Burtis House to create a new understanding of the property, which will emphasize the importance of William Burtis in Annapolis’s history, tell the story of the Burtis family, reveal the largely forgotten history of Hell Point and nineteenth century Annapolis, and illustrate the significance of Burtis House’s survival to the present day.
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    Creating A Historic Context Study For The Old Ellicott City Jail
    (2023-12-18) Adesina, Janet Ti-Oluwaleyi; Bissett, Rachel E.; Hutter, Chris; Mohammadi, Justin Seyed; Tannir, Joseph A.; Magalong, Michelle G.
    HISP 650 (Historic Preservation Studio Workshop)students worked with Dr. Michelle Magalong (course instructor) and Preservation Maryland (studio client) on a historic context study on the old Ellicott City Jail. The students responded to Preservation Maryland’s Request for Proposals and spent the fall semester conducting archival research on the social and architectural history of the historic jail with topics on its association with the Underground Railroad and African American history and its lynching history. Lastly, students conducted research on the potential impacts of flooding and climate change.This Report is in response to Preservation Maryland’s Request For Proposals (RFP) to create a Historic Context Study for The Old Ellicott City Jail, also known as the Howard County Jail. It documents the history of the jail including important events and people involved with the various aspects of the jail. The project team developed a technical approach and timeline to create a context study that encompasses the history and role of the jail in Howard County, Maryland, and the people (slaves, inmates, wardens, and others) associated with the jail from its beginning in 1851 to its closing in the 1980s.
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    Connecting Students and Communities: A Case Study in Historic School Rehabilitation Vaux Big Picture High School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
    (2023-10-12) Cargill, Christina Winnie; Linebaugh, Donald; Bierbaum, Ariel
    This project takes a multidisciplinary pronged approach to community development, schools, and historic preservation using a case study of Vaux Big Picture High School, a successfully rehabilitated historic Philadelphia school that was closed and later returned to use as a neighborhood school. Through partner involvement and the incentives of a HUD choice neighborhood grant, the new school has the funds and resources to create essential social, health, and employment support resources for the students and outside community. This case study demonstrates that the school building is an important neighborhood asset and has significance beyond its architectural style or design. In addition, a greater understanding of local history can be appreciated and understood through a broader inquiry into social and cultural community history. The goal of this paper is to encourage preservationists to consider designing spaces with possible community-serving purposes in institutional buildings such as neighborhood schools.
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    (2023) Farrish, Kelsey; Linebaugh, Donald; Sprinkle, John
    This project develops a preliminary Cultural Landscape Inventory (CLI) for the area around the National Park Service (NPS) Mission 66 visitor center at Great Falls Park in Virginia. The project area includes the visitor center and courtyard, entrance station and road, parking area, overlook trails, remnants of the Patowmack Canal, picnic area, comfort station, Mather plaque, and surrounding woodlands. This CLI provides NPS with baseline data about park resources in an easily accessible and comprehensive document that can be used to make decisions regarding management, maintenance, and preservation of those resources. This report documents and evaluates the historic significance and integrity of landscape features through site maps, National Register information, chronology and physical history background, analysis and evaluation of integrity, and a condition assessment.
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    Reconsidering the Roulette Barn
    (2023-05-20) Gold, Tabitha; Linebaugh, Don; Sprinkle, John
    The Roulette Farm’s iconic bank barn is currently underutilized and endangered. The National Park Service has assigned a narrow period of significance to the property and barn, tying its significance solely to the American Civil War and overlooking its broader history as a center of agricultural production. The structure had fallen into disrepair before being repaired with modern building materials, and is missing key features of its original construction. The barn’s untapped potential warrants structural repairs, a full restoration to its original condition, and a rethinking of its interpretive uses. This analysis develops a preservation plan to assess the history, significance, and condition of the Roulette Barn. The plan also considers the barn’s construction methods, addresses its historic integrity and how the barn’s narrow period of significance and interpretation methods have impacted historic integrity, suggests new interpretive possibilities, and recommends necessary repairs and maintenance requirements that would lead to the restoration of the structure. Expanding consideration of the barn’s significance to include its place in the agricultural history of the region provides an opportunity to realize a more complete interpretation and increase its value as a historic resource.
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    The Horse-Powered City: Washington, D.C.
    (2023-05-20) Medley, Lucy; Linebaugh, Donald; Sies, Mary
    This study focuses on the transition from horse-powered to automotive transit in Washington, DC and explores how the city’s cultural landscape was adapted to fit this new means of transportation. Three main sources are used to establish an inventory of horse- and automotive-related structures: Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps, Baist’s Real Estate Atlas of Surveys, and Boyd’s City Directories of the District of Columbia. Inventoried structures are documented in their form and function between 1888 and 1935 to further understand the transitional period between transportation methods and changes to the city’s infrastructure and livelihood. Documented changes are analyzed further in the context of the increasing prominence of the automobile in the 20th century. Trends in car manufacturing, specifically the Ford company, are included to support trends found in the analysis. Additionally, an inventory of extant structures is conducted to better understand the fate of these structures and their contemporary uses, if any.
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    Recovering Linden
    (2023-05-19) Mekonnen, Elizabeth; Linebaugh, Donald W.; Magalong, Michelle; Cameron, Hannah
    This project documents the history of Linden [Lyttonsville], an African American community founded in 1853 in Silver Spring, Maryland. One hundred years after its founding, Linden experienced the destructive effects of urban renewal policy. The impact of urban renewal had devastating political, social, and economic consequences for Black neighborhoods like Linden. Urban renewal led to the loss of not only the community’s historic infrastructure, but over 60% of its residential area. This project specifically focuses on documenting the history of the community prior to urban renewal through oral histories and by reconstructing its spatial and historical landscape through the mapping of significant spaces and places associated with the community. This project draws on multiple sources including archival research and the oral histories of current and former Linden residents to make visible the spaces, stories, and histories of the Linden community prior to the devastation of urban renewal.
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    John Tyler's Woodburn: A Preservation Plan
    (2023-05-19) White, W. Valentine; Linebaugh, Donald
    Woodburn is an early nineteenth-century property located in Charles City County, Virginia. Built between 1813 - 1815 for John Tyler (the tenth U.S. president), the property is now owned by a descendant of Tyler who is interested in its preservation and possible uses for the site. This paper provides an overview of the property, its history, its current condition, and makes recommendations for additional investigations and potential uses.
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    Preservation Plan: 261 North Barton Street
    (2023-05-18) Maisano, Francesca Claire; Linebaugh, Donald W.; Stachura, Frederick C.
    This project develops a preservation plan for 261 North Barton Street in Arlington County, Virginia, the home of Indigenous activist Zitkala-Ša and her husband and fellow Indigenous activist Raymond Talefase Bonnin from 1925 to 1942. Although the house and its garage are contributing structures to a National Register of Historic Places historic district for the Lyon Park neighborhood, the National Register is honorific and Arlington’s Historical Affairs and Landmark Review Board only protects locally designated historic districts. In addition, the current district nomination focuses on “community planning/development” (Criterion A) and “architecture” (Criterion C), lacking any mention of the significant contribution of these Indigenous activists. The proposed plan begins with an overview of the property’s historical and architectural context before establishing the property’s significance, prepared in accordance with National Register guidance, and a condition assessment and integrity chapter. The plan ends with recommendations, focusing on public outreach options, and conclusions, including next steps and further research.
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    National Historic Register Nomination for Antietam Farm, Sharpsburg, MD
    (2023-05-18) Candelaria, Brianna; Donald W., Linebaugh, PhD; Dennis J., Pogue, PhD
    Antietam Farm is a historic vernacular farmstead located south of Sharpsburg in Washington County, Maryland. The farm, set in an agricultural area of high historical interest, reflects the development and events in this part of Washington County. David Showman acquired 220 acres in 1842 and built the farmhouse ca. 1844. The house has Federal and Greek Revival elements, contrasting with the German vernacular farmhouses in the region. Sharpsburg and the surrounding area were the location of the 1862 Battle of Antietam. Following the Battle, the house was the headquarters for Union General Ambrose Burnside and the Union Army’s 9th Corps. President Abraham Lincoln visited the Antietam battlefield and met with Burnside at this house. Some 70,000 Union troops occupied the region for an extended time, devastating the region’s agriculture and farms. Over the last three decades, the owners have carefully restored the farm to its mid-19th-century appearance. The result is a property whose historical significance, integrity, and contributing resources make it eligible for the National Register of Historic Places under Criteria A and C.
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    National Register of Historic Places Nomination for the Old Korean Legation Building
    (2023-05-16) Lucier-Keller, Emma; Linebaugh, Donald; Magalong, Michelle
    The Korean Legation building at 1500 13th Street Northwest, Washington, D.C., once served as a nexus of early U.S. and Korean diplomacy. Nestled among buildings lining Logan Circle, the South Korean flag and a small entrance plaque are the only visible hints to the building’s complex heritage. The Korean Legation building is worthy of nomination to the National Register of Historic Places because of its significance regarding the early development of international relations between the U.S. and Korea. This edifice is a remarkable, tangible link to the early history of Koreans in the U.S., given that historical discrimination and xenophobia of individuals, systems, and the state resulted in the loss of historical landscapes associated with many marginalized communities. Only within the last few decades has the preservation field begun to recognize more sites historically relevant to marginalized communities and people of color and this nomination furthers that important work. A short essay will conclude the final project document to provide insight into the nomination research and writing process with specific emphasis on challenges and opportunities in producing National Register nominations for sites associated with underrepresented and marginalized communities. This can also serve as a guide or resource for future students undertaking a National Register nomination for the first time.
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    Historic Structure Investigation: The Goshen Farm House, Cape St. Claire, Maryland
    (2022-12) Cunningham, Grant Matthew; Linebaugh, Donald W.; Pogue, Dennis J.
    The Goshen Farm House, located in Cape St. Claire, Maryland, is a historic vernacular residence and important resource in the cultural landscape of Anne Arundel County. Built in the late eighteenth century and expanded in three distinct phases over approximately 187 years, the house is representative of regional historical and architectural developments; it is the centerpiece of a larger project underway to reimagine its rural property as a successful community resource. This report builds on previous investigations of the house and analyzes the residence’s material evolution and historic significance. Anticipating planned, near-term interventions to the building’s fabric, as well as longer-term questions surrounding the structure’s ultimate use, the report also assesses the farmhouse’s historic material and character-defining features and outlines recommendations for their preservation under any future scheme to alter the site. While this investigation finds that the house is not eligible for National Register listing in its current condition, the building remains a significant historic asset for the Cape St. Claire community and warrants continued consideration and study moving forward.
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    Historic Structure Investigation: The Collins House, Bloomfield, New Jersey
    (2022) Evans, Francesca; Pogue, Dennis J.; Linebaugh, Donald W.
    The Collins House in the Township of Bloomfield, New Jersey, is in the process of being rehabilitated with the intent for the building to become one of the visitor centers along the state-wide Morris Canal Greenway. Despite the building’s National Register Nomination form and a cultural resources survey carried out in 1982, there is a lack of detailed documentation of the Collins House to guide future interpretation of the site and ensure that character defining features are preserved and retained. Therefore, an investigation was conducted as part of this report to document the current condition of the Collins House, examine the evolution of interior spaces and layouts over time, and identify character defining features. This analysis concludes by offering recommendations that will guide the township in future rehabilitation efforts and will ensure the retention of the building’s integrity so that visitors will experience a historically accurate interpretation of the Collins House.
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    The Resilient Island - Revitalizing a Broken Home
    (2022-05) Pena, Alexander; Hu, Ming; Tilghman, James
    Disaster struck Puerto Rico on September 6th, 2017, when Hurricane Irma, a category 5 hurricane, breached the islands. Communities had no time to recover as Hurricane Maria, an even bigger threat, reached land not more than two weeks later. These two disasters happening in quick succession led to a devastating death toll of 2,975 people and caused a total of $90 billion in damages. This had been the most devastating disaster to hit in over 100 years. The people of Puerto Rico are still recovering to this day and are trying to find solutions to creating community resiliency. This thesis will focus primarily on what makes a community resilient and how to apply this to other Caribbean nations. Not all Caribbean islands face the same challenges and each one has its own identity. To assume that all islands are the same would be irrational. Additionally, this thesis will look at how a community can shift from being unconventional to very functional. Throughout the recent years, there has been a shift in design and function toward creating communities that are more sustainable, durable, and resilient. While this shift can occur easily in more modern societies, those that lack the resources to do so will continue to struggle unless proper support can be given.
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    Preservation Planning in Asian and Pacific Islander American Communities: A Case Study of Washington D.C.’s Chinatown
    (2021-12) Yee, Karen; Wells, Jeremy; Magalong, Michelle
    This paper explores current preservation planning practice and how traditional methods of research and survey have underserved Asian and Pacific Islander American communities in preserving both their cultural and historic resources. This paper also provides recommendations to current preservation planning practice to better serve these communities which include addressing the disparity between preservation and urban planning processes and incorporating and changing the way historic context studies and surveys are conducted and applied. Washington D.C.’s Chinatown was utilized as a case study example to critically analyze how the separation of preservation and planning processes affects the preservation and health of D.C.’s Chinatown.
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    Historic Structure Investigation: The Piper House, Antietam National Battlefield, Sharpsburg, Maryland
    (2020) Davenport, Grace; Pogue, Dennis; Linebaugh, Donald
    The Piper House at Antietam National Battlefield in Sharpsburg, Maryland, is an important cultural resource in the battlefield landscape. Built in the second quarter of the nineteenth century, the house has undergone five phases of construction. The Piper Farm was in the center of the Battle of Antietam on September 17, 1862, but is also a good representative example of a vernacular farmhouse in Washington County, Maryland. This report assesses the significance of the house and farm outbuildings as a contributing resource to Antietam National Battlefield's National Register of Historic Places designation, investigates the building chronology and historic construction methods, and provides recommendations for the preservation of historic fabric. This analysis describes the integrity of historic fabric and character defining features.
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    Demolition by Neglect in West Virginia: A Policy Analysis of a Historic Preservation Scourge in The Mountain State
    (2021-05-21) Brammer, Jeff; Pogue, Dennis; Wells, Jeremy
    Preservationists in West Virginia consider demolition by neglect the leading threat facing historic structures in the state. Demolition by neglect is the gradual destruction of historic resources through abandonment or lack of maintenance. Demolition by neglect is particularly challenging for authorities in West Virginia, where as many as 1 in 16 properties are vacant or abandoned. Neglected properties deter economic development, increase crime, create safety hazards, lower property values, and reduce public tax rolls. This paper assesses the efficacy of laws and policies in West Virginia to mitigate loss of historic resources to demolition by neglect. This process of comparative analysis utilized a review of best practices as outlined in the professional and academic literature. This research also evaluated real world examples of laws and policies from other states and jurisdictions. The research finds West Virginia enabling legislation lacks the necessary prescriptive language to convey authority to municipalities to enact effective ordinances against demolition by neglect. The research also finds state law and local ordinances inadequately promote incentives to make expanded affirmative maintenance requirements more palatable. However, expansion of home rule authority in West Virginia may provide communities greater autonomy to address local preservation. In light of these findings, the author presents recommendations.
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    A Comparative Study of Cremona Farm's Antebellum Tobacco Barns and Outbuildings as Resources in Regional Context
    (2021) Bryan, Michael; Pogue, Dennis; Linebaugh, Donald
    A 2019 University of Maryland Historic Preservation Program study at Cremona in St. Mary’s County, Maryland, uncovered the potential historical significance of an assemblage of antebellum domestic and agricultural outbuildings. Other well-preserved layers of architectural and landscape history exist at Cremona, creating an exemplary confluence of continuity and change. After a detailed examination of Cremona’s antebellum resources to establish the integrity of these structures, this paper details the results of two related yet distinct lines of inquiry to ascertain the historic significance of Cremona’s outbuildings as contributing resources. Detailed architectural investigations of three, dated barns at Cremona serve as a starting point for comparisons with other period (1797-1833) Southern Maryland barns. The paper particularly focuses on the functional details related to sheds, doors, and transverse intermediate sills. Cremona’s place in Southern Maryland’s antebellum era outbuilding landscape is investigated. After establishing statistical outbuilding use via 1798 Federal Direct Tax records, this study identifies comparable, extant outbuilding assemblages in the region in order to determine the significance of Cremona’s outbuildings.