Goucher College MA in Historic Preservation

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The breadth of historic preservation is reflected in the Master of Arts in Historic Preservation program at Goucher College. Founded in 1995 as the nation's first limited-residency graduate program in the field, students have included long-time preservationists who wish to add to their knowledge, professionals in related fields who seek to specialize in historic preservation, as well as those who wish to change careers. This collection contains abstracts only due to copyright concerns. If you wish to view the entire thesis please contact the director of the MAHP Program Richard Wagner at: richard.wagner@goucher.edu.


Recent Submissions

Now showing 1 - 20 of 173
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    (2024-05-15) Mahan, Drew; Betsy H. Bradley, Ph.D.; MA in Historic Preservation
    In 2022, the Nashville Chamber of Commerce announced that the city was growing by 98 individuals per day. This explosive growth has put an unprecedented strain upon the city’s historic resources, predominantly affecting historic neighborhoods occupied by people of color. As historic preservation professionals, it is our mission to tell the fuller American story, and in this case the fuller story of Nashville. The portion of the Edgehill neighborhood that this study focuses on has been the site of erasure, followed by a period of community-based activism to prevent a large-scale housing project, and concluding with hyper-gentrification in the past decade. In the late 1960s, the Nashville Housing Authority documented the area, resulting in a collection of 35-millimeter slides that show the Edgehill neighborhood on the cusp of demolition. The images were captured to justify the buildings impending demolition. This collection exists as the only photographic evidence of the buildings that once existed there. This thesis project explores these themes from 1940 to the present day, using Nashville’s Edgehill neighborhood as a model. To combat erasure and the loss of the memory of a neighborhood, the project utilizes an archival collection to tell the story of a place that no longer exists. Using social media as a medium, the project seeks to keep Edgehill’s memory alive, inspire a new generation of preservationists, create a forum for conversations surrounding Nashville’s growth and gentrification, provide access to a previously unseen photo collection, and tell the fuller Nashville story. This study produced two products: this framework paper and a social media project. From August to December 2023, I posted archival images from Metro Housing and Development Agency’s photo collections housed at Metro Nashville Archives to Facebook and Instagram. The images and stories in those posts went on to inform the content in this paper and vice versa.
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    Navigating Heritage: Charting a Course to Narrative Equity
    (2023-12-11) Evans, Tristram; Lytle, Melanie; MA in Historic Preservation
    Like other modern heritage conservationists in the United States, I seek a more holistic understanding of heritage places and a broader framework within which to operate – one that shifts the focus away from the built environment and that centers on people’s lives and attachments to heritage places. In response, this study presents a recalibrated heritage framework: one that centers individual narratives and elevates the importance of a landscape approach to heritage; that considers the built environment as a component element thereof, rather than the be-all and end-all of our work; and which demands that we constantly question existing interpretations of places within the context of their contemporary needs. The focus of my study is the need for a more expansive approach to curating the experiences of those who claim heritage landscapes, with the goal of cultivating more inclusive, representative and equitable narratives. I argue that prevailing narratives in heritage places all too often fall short of telling the full American story and perpetuate a limited, hegemonic perspective on how a particular heritage landscape has evolved. Our efforts to fully understand and interpret heritage places are severely limited by the failure to incorporate the full spectrum of perspectives and experiences through the curation of inclusive narratives. I propose an approach that centers storytelling in the context of the unfinished nature of cultural landscapes, and which incorporates principles of Critical Race Theory, as adoptable steps to achieve these new goals. I distill my recommendations into a series of guidelines to assist the heritage practitioner in the cultivation of narrative equity.
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    (2023-12) Christopher Jensen; Melanie Lytle; Cynthia Olnick; Thompson M. Mayes; MA in Historic Preservation
    This thesis argues that love of place and wellbeing are fundamental aspects of historic preservation, and that historic preservationists should engage with the public to emphasize how preservation can enhance emotional wellbeing for individuals and communities. In this treatise, I review evidence of love of place and wellbeing presented in prior research, including resources such as Topophilia: A Study of Environmental Perceptions, Attitudes, and Values by Yi-Fu Tuan, Why Old Places Matter by Thompson Mayes, and studies such as The Melbourne Lovability Index Industry Report. Through this research, I demonstrated that historic places have a direct link to people's emotional attachment to place, such as love of place. Additionally, I review sources for wellbeing in heritage, such as The Impact of Historic Places and Assets on Community Wellbeing, People-Centred Methodologies for Heritage Conservation, and Heritage, Health, and Wellbeing, which reveal that historic places have a direct impact on human emotional wellbeing. The purpose and scope of this thesis is to help preservationists address love of place, its intersection with wellbeing, and how to communicate with people that historic preservation is valuable and contributes to human wellbeing. This thesis is intended to contribute to an ongoing conversation in historic preservation, with the expectation that future discussions will address regulatory measures and criteria changes related to wellbeing and love of place.
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    Focusing on the Present While Honoring the Past: LGBTQ Preservation as a Model for Revised Historic Preservation Practice
    (2023-05-21) Maguire, Molly; MA in Historic Preservation
    As the field of historic preservation seeks to tell more complete stories, there is a disconnect between efforts to engage with diverse histories and many of the tools available to historic preservation practitioners. Traditional historic preservation tools are designed to preserve historic fabric and are, therefore, not always in alignment with community-based preservation in these underrepresented and historically ignored communities. Many marginalized groups have not historically had access to the stability of property ownership or have lived transient lives shaped by discrimination and displacement that have permanently affected the way they relate to and form attachment to place. This treatise explores these ideas through an analysis of Chicago’s LGBTQ community from the early twentieth century through the formation of its most visible gay neighborhood in Northalsted in the 1970s. In response to this disconnect with traditional preservation tools, this treatise proposes suggestions for how preservationists can support current LGBTQ communities by incorporating sense of place into preservation work and deferring to community values. Two community-based development projects in Northalsted provide one potential model for a more flexible approach to historic preservation that doesn’t rely on the strict preservation of historic fabric.
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    (2023-05) Caudle, Jessica; Melanie, Lytle; Jim, Houran; Michele, Hanks; Historic Preservation Department; MA in Historic Preservation
    This thesis examines paranormal tourism as a hybrid subsector of cultural heritage and dark tourism to demonstrate the current issues regarding the acceptance and utility of site interpretation practice and its potential as a revenue source for historic communities and sites. Three underlying criticisms are analyzed—authenticity, destabilization of historical narrative, and exploitation of disenfranchised peoples—with solutions in interpretation practice to demonstrate the possibility that paranormal tourism can provide a primary or secondary source of revenue generation for historic communities and historic sites. Freeman Tilden’s Principles for Interpretation heavily influence the recommended interpretation practice suggested within the inclusion of paranormal tourism. Tilden demonstrates in his book Interpreting Our Heritage that interpretation provides the necessary historical facts within these stories for a complete historical narrative that addresses critical criticism topics. This thesis argues that paranormal stories offer additional context to historical narratives that can provoke the audience into an emotional response necessary to maintain interest in the historic site. I use a critical topics approach with case studies to analyze small communities, including Tarrytown, New York, Mansfield, Ohio, and Alton, Illinois, examining the economic impact of rebranding their communities as paranormal tourist destinations. I analyze three selected historic properties with a reputation for reported paranormal activity: the Crescent Hotel in Eureka Springs, Arkansas; Peoria State Hospital in Bartonville, Illinois; and Beattie Mansion in St. Joseph, Missouri. Using the solutions extracted from examining the issues in acceptance of paranormal tourism, economic data from the small communities and historic properties, and responses from the personal interviews I conducted with managers of each selected historic property, I have developed a toolkit for historic properties and communities to utilize when adapting traditional site interpretation for inclusion of paranormal tourism. This toolkit addresses the criticisms of paranormal tourism, including authenticity, destabilization of historical narrative, and exploitation, and provides real-world examples of solutions to combat these criticisms. In addition, practical information is provided, including marketing, tour pricing, and employment needs.
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    Heritage Species for Historic Preservation
    (2023-05) Cohan, Elizabeth; Lytle, Melanie; Gonzales, Jackie; Lookingbill, Todd; MA in Historic Preservation
    The United States has no standardized concept to recognize nonhuman species of cultural significance. This thesis argues that the field of historic preservation should play a role in cultural species documentation to fill this gap. To achieve this, preservation practice must expand the documentation process to include culturally significant nonhuman species to fully understand the complex historical relationship between species, people, and places and manage cultural landscapes holistically as dynamic systems. This thesis provides an overview of policy and practice, explains cultural landscape documentation and programs, discusses a brief legislative and regulatory history of the nature-culture divide, and provides examples of how nonhuman species are typically captured through current documentation methods, focusing on the National Park Service’s (NPS) National Register of Historic Places (National Register), Cultural Landscape Inventories (CLI), and Cultural Landscape Reports (CLR). I introduce a new concept to identify culturally significant nonhuman species: heritage species. The heritage species definition and criteria are grounded in existing frameworks such as ethnobiology’s Cultural Keystone Species (CKS) and World Heritage Species. I apply the proposed heritage species concept and evaluate example heritage species, including Mexican free-tailed bats along Congress Avenue Bridge in Austin, Texas and old-growth trees within Glencarlyn Park in Arlington, Virginia, against the National Register. This study finds that heritage species can fit into existing documentation methods within our preservation framework and presents a set of five actionable options geared toward historic preservation professionals which act as possible steps forward to integrate heritage species into documentation. Out of these proposed actionable options, this study suggests preservation professionals document heritage species and their habitat, heritage species habitat, when appropriate rather than the living species itself; this approach fits more easily into the existing place-based framework. Beyond proposed actionable options, additional recommendations to update preservation practice include updates to the current cultural landscape guidance published by the NPS. The proposed heritage species concept is intended to serve as a catalyst for preservationists to update preservation practice from a peoples-first to a living-species-first approach. This paradigm shift has many implications for communities and resource managers regarding the Section 106 process and integrated resource management. This study aims to initiate conversations about integrating species, people, and places within historic preservation theory and practice to reconcile how to preserve living landscapes.
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    (2023-05-15) Bater, Ross; MA in Historic Preservation
    Climate change is an urgent, human-made global phenomenon that has resulted in significant, long-term changes in weather patterns in the early 21st century (1). Consequently, communities that are historically, culturally, or through other means attached to coastal or island locations are beginning to feel and see the effects of climate change as it alters the places they deem important. These communities will be confronted with finding ways forward for preserving a place-attached culture and heritage that is in danger of losing the place it is attached to. The time for preservationists to situate agency within these communities by altering our preservation practices is now. This study recognizes that current historic preservation practices focus more on the conservation or preservation of land and existing buildings through mitigation rather than accepting the fact that climate change and sea level rise will one day overtake where we live because land is impermanent in some places. Hence, this treatise proposes that preservationists need to explore the idea that the historic preservation practice toolkit needs to expand. I argue that it should include community-based preservation frameworks that extend beyond site-specific places. This inclusion will prevent a future in which it would be too little, too late for a community that is either expecting partial or full loss of land. For that reason, this treatise demonstrates the need for more approaches and provides an important component of moving our field towards a future where the impermanence of land will not mean a community’s culture and heritage will cease to be. This study employs the concepts of place attachment theory, futures mapping, and the community-based approach as the foundations for how we re-think how we plan for and preserve culture and heritage in a proactive manner. These three concepts are the basis for community- based preservation —which situates agency in threatened communities to make decisions on their futures rather than outsiders or experts — and are imperative to shifting the preservationists’ toolkit. [Likewise,] the community aspect of this study is examined through the voices of the Chesapeake Bay watermen. This group serves as a case study for ways to understand others’ narratives of what is happening and what is threatened and analyze past and present attachments thorough out the Bay area. Lastly, this study provides several community-based frameworks rather than concrete recommendations for preservationists and communities to consider. Preservationists are accountable to situate agency within communities that are affected by climate change, so these recommendations are frameworks that can be adapted by communities in order to plan for their futures. For this reason, the proposed frameworks are theoretical because I, nor any preservationist, should claim authority to tell communities how to preserve themselves and plan for the future. Therefore, the greatest lesson that this study has for the communities that are threatened by climate change and sea level rise is that formal and informal or less organized community groups can use one, all, or a combination of these suggested frameworks to work towards preserving their culture and heritage. (1). United States Environmental Protection Agency, “Causes of Climate Change” (August 19, 2022), https://www.epa.gov/climatechange-science/causes-climate-change.
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    Re-claiming Lost Landscapes Through Collaborative Ethnography: A Preservation Case Study Centered on Intangible Heritage
    (2022-12-08) Waters, Nikki A.; Lytle, Melanie M.A.H.P., Director; Lassiter, Luke Eric Ph.D.; Sommers, Laurie Kay Ph.D.; Historic Preservation; MA in Historic Preservation
    This thesis shows how collaborative ethnography—as defined by open and deliberate ongoing collaboration between researchers and research participants—can help re-identify lost landscapes through the collection of memory and story and could help former residents strengthen and maintain their place attachment. Memory and story evoke place in ways that more conventional preservation practice often misses. A collaborative ethnography approach to preservation practice can bring places with little to no tangible heritage back into the broader historical narrative and provide richer social, historical, and geographic contexts for places that retain robust tangible heritage. The case study for this project is the pre-1990 landscape of the Limestone Pony Club (LPC) which is primarily centered around Fayetteville and Manlius, New York. While some portions of this landscape are extant, others have been lost to development or no longer retain recognizable physical signs they were once associated with the LPC. A collaborative approach to collecting memory and story brought these lost portions of the landscape back into the historic LPC narrative. This study produced two products—first, a framework document for preservation professionals outlining how to apply collaborative ethnography to preservation practice, and second, a three-part LPC History and Memory Toolkit. The toolkit consists of a story map, a Facebook group dedicated to LPC history and memories, and a narrative LPC history from 1963 to 1989, all developed through this collaborative ethnography approach to traditional preservation research. The Facebook group page also served as a digital ethnographic field site and aided in collecting and reviewing LPC memories and stories. This thesis shows how and why a collaborative ethnography approach is beneficial to preservationists seeking a more people-centered focus.
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    (2022-05) King, Meghan; MA in Historic Preservation
    This treatise examines the housing shortage, addressing the underlying social issues of sense of self and place attachment in our communities. Analysis is undertaken from the perspective of basic human psychological needs as well as physical needs, and the concepts of sense of self and sense of place, and their relationship to potential adaptive reuse projects. The treatise uses Causal Layered Analysis, and a focus on the possible biases and assumptions that have prevented more effective housing solutions. It is argued that housing issues are a symptom of a much larger problem, community disintegration, and the loss of psychological sense of self. Historic preservation practices of adaptive reuse of the already existing built environment are proposed as an element of the solution to resolve humans’ loss of the sense of self and sense of place which are necessary for community stability. These intangible issues provide the necessary raw material to address the physical housing issue. In addition to a discussion of various relevant theories across sociology, psychology, architecture, urban studies, and economics, examples will be given to illustrate how new solutions to current problems can come from thorough analysis. A final example applying treatise principles to an existing abandoned nineteenth century manufacturing building demonstrates how changes in the built environment and in our thinking that place over time. These changes in turn influence our ideas of sense of place, and sense of self, which can be seen in how we regard our communities. The Causal Layered Analysis method allows the consideration of multiple perspectives, and how these perspectives influence each other if one is shifted, even slightly. I advocate for the expanded adoption of an approach to the housing crisis that is already used, but in a fragmentary manner. Historic preservation embraces adaptive reuse, as do other projects presented in this study. The call to action of this treatise seeks to demonstrate the feasibility of adaptive reuse as a practical solution in a wide range of settings as part of a sustained future for individual and community development. I hope to see adaptive reuse as a tool to ease our housing crisis, as well as stop the degradation of sense of self on a personal and community level.
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    (2022-05) Weber, Amy; MA in Historic Preservation
    Historic places that serve as the setting for legends that claim the potential for extraordinary experiences can be impacted by visitors who seek to have similar experiences for themselves. This practice, known as legend tripping, is a recreational activity in which the visitors, known as legend trippers, engage in certain actions and rituals at the site in order to reenact the legend and stimulate the uncanny or supernatural events that others claim to have experienced. While the specific performances required by the legend are often benign, legend trippers sometimes engage in other activities and behaviors that may ultimately be harmful to the site. I employ a Critical Topic Approach to explore the fundamental elements of legend tripping as associated with historic places through analysis of four example locations. I explore how stories, specifically legends, can create sense of place and place attachment which, accompanied by the purported potential to experience the extraordinary, motivate some people to visit a site to see if they have a similar experience. I discuss how, once at the site, legend trippers endeavor to enter into the legend themselves by performing certain actions that are said to illicit the uncanny response and how these actions, and others in which legend trippers engage, such as “tagging,” littering, and other actions that harm site structures and buildings, have the potential for real, and in some cases lasting, damage. I examine the potential effects of legend tripping and how some sites attempt to address them. Using an interdisciplinary approach, combining folklore, historic preservation, and cultural geography theories and practices, I show in this thesis that stewards of historic places experiencing impacts from legend trippers can benefit from understanding the motivations and intentions behind the practice and use this understanding to develop a pragmatic plan for management and mitigation of such impacts. I offer analysis of common legend trip consequences and mitigation approaches, followed by suggestions and recommendations for additional potential strategies to address legend trip impacts. I also discuss how it may be possible to find ways to leverage the legend tripping in a way that may ultimately benefit the historic place.
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    Historic Preservation for All People: Reconceptualizing Accessibility in Historic Buildings
    (2022-05) Diehl, Megan; MA in Historic Preservation
    Increasing physical access to everyday historic buildings is a concept often in conflict with the practice of historic preservation. Making these places more accessible frequently requires physical changes, while many aspects of our current preservation model seek to protect and preserve historic materials against change. This tension can result in historic buildings that are either partially or completely inaccessible to people with physical disabilities, or that are accessible in ways that create inequitable experiences. In this treatise, I propose changes to our field’s mindset towards and practice of improving accessibility in historic buildings that instead encourage equitable experiences for everyone. In recent years, practitioners in our field have expressed interest in moving towards a people-oriented preservation movement that promotes preservation of the relationships people create and sustain with historic properties. Place attachment theory illuminates that these relationships grow through the experiences that people have with place. An analysis of Title III of the Americans with Disabilities Act and examples from our field’s federal preservation resources reveals that these documents encourage practitioners to use preservation of historic fabric as the bellwether for designing accessibility improvements. This approach, and our field’s emphasis on preserving historic façades and entrances, contributes to experiences of inequity when people with disabilities enter historic buildings. These inequitable experiences conflict with people-focused preservation because they diminish opportunities for people with disabilities to build relationships with historic places. In response to these findings, I propose changes to how our field understands and approaches improving access to historic buildings that align with a people-focused preservation model. These recommendations draw ideas from the social model of disability, critical disability theory, and Universal Design. I also argue that preservationists should reconsider historic façades and entrances as points of engagement between people and place. I support these assertions with suggested revisions to our federal accessibility resources that reflect this new perspective.
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    (2022-05) Fry, Julie M.; Bradley, Betsy; MA in Historic Preservation
    Urban areas need artists and cultural assets to thrive, and through adaptive reuse of historic buildings for artists, cities can both retain the histories and cultures of their people and provide solutions to gentrification, displacement, blight, and inequities in how cities develop. While arts and culture cannot mitigate all these issues, they can help to create a connective tissue among people, a connection that can make communities stronger and more inclusive. I found that it is imperative to meet the arts sector’s needs for safe, functional, affordable and stable spaces to live and work. Historic building stock (industrial, commercial, residential) can be adapted to meet those needs in an equitable way, while also helping to redevelop underutilized urban neighborhoods. This treatise examined the intersection of these components in two similar cities on the margins, Saint-Denis, France and Oakland, California, which provided a cross-cultural opportunity to consider new approaches and perspectives to the challenges both countries face at a time of particularly polarizing global unrest. The COVID-19 pandemic, the war in Ukraine, the climate crisis, and social justice issues are affecting how we live and how we relate to each other in a civil society, underlining the need to strengthen the places that people gather, a role that arts and culture fulfills. Progress in both countries requires joining financial resources, decision- making power, and the built environment in a sustainable way in partnership with artists and residents. A top-down, bureaucratic approach needs to be replaced by community collaboration. I made recommendations that address this critical urban need in a variety of ways through real estate and urban development models, funding models, historic preservation policies, and methods to better value the arts in public spaces. For example, cities can provide financial incentives to convert unused office space into artist studios, apartments, galleries, or performing arts venues. They can embed artists in municipal preservation offices so that local preservation policies can account for the needs of the cultural sector. Cities can create cultural/preservation zones to provide equitable capital and operating support for hyper-local arts engagements that revitalize marginalized communities through the built environment. By forging new links with each other while imagining in tandem new ways of equitable and creative city-building, both the French banlieues and diverse American cities will thrive.
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    (2022-05) Burt, Zachary; MA in Historic Preservation
    Using the Sun Belt city of Las Vegas, Nevada and its thoroughfares as a location of analysis, this study presents an evaluative framework – inspired by cultural geographers Peirce Lewis and Richard H. Schein – for observing and documenting the seen features and unseen aspects of commercial thoroughfares as cultural landscapes. Importantly, this framework incorporates physical features, as defined by the National Park Service and its National Register of Historic Places program, while also accounting for intangible culture and meanings. This comprehensive approach is brought about by embracing cultural landscape theory, which allows historic preservation practitioners to get beyond traditional discussions of historic integrity and significance, and move past building-by-building architecture surveys. By applying this framework to a single property, such as an indoor shopping mall, or multiple ones, such as an entire commercial strip, preservation practitioners can acknowledge and document these ubiquitous cultural landscapes. This framework is meant to be flexible, and is structured in a way that allows for preservationists to discover meanings that may be missed in a more traditional survey. After applying the framework, an actionable step can be taken. The step can be limited, such as adding a historic marker for interpretation, or extensive, like proceeding with historic landmark designation – as determined through community engagement. Commercial thoroughfares play an outsized role in the American built environment and are the key to understanding dynamic urban and suburban landscapes as cultural landscapes. This is especially true in the cities of the Sun Belt region, which experienced explosive growth in the Post-World War II years. In turn, these cities developed around automobiles, shopping centers, and parking lots. These wide thoroughfares, marked with free-standing signs and billboards, and their architecture of the “recent past” may give today’s historic preservationists pause, considering their perceived lack of “sense of place” and significant history. However, commercial thoroughfares’ strips and nodes have been serving local residents for decades, and play a meaningful role in residents’ lives. In the 1960s through 1980s, the local and national retailers found along commercial thoroughfares primarily served a White, middle-income clientele – as shown by marketing at the time. Since then, these cultural landscapes have been transformed by a social evolution, where longtime commercial spaces – including strip malls, shopping centers, and indoor shopping malls – have been repurposed, and now cater to diverse and multicultural communities. This change, which typically includes physical alterations to the exterior and interior of commercial spaces, has been accomplished in-part through the inherent flexibility of these buildings and structures. Former supermarkets and discount retailers have become swap meets and stores that sell products from around the world, and strip malls and one-time fast food restaurants now serve a variety of ethnic cuisines. By tracing this historic and social narrative, a multicultural palimpsest becomes apparent, composed of both tangible features and intangible aspects. Therefore, commercial thoroughfares and their corresponding commercial spaces are the perfect place for observation and analysis.
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    For the Survival of Future Generations in the Face of Climate Change: Planning for Alaska Village Migration Using Cultural Heritage Based Principles
    (2020-12-11) Lewis, Maria; MA in Historic Preservation
    Climate-induced migration has become the last resort for communities in Alaska whose homes are threatened due to permafrost and shoreline erosion. As the indigenous youth and future leaders of Alaska’s Federation of Natives so powerfully state, the survival of their future generations, ways of life, traditional lands, intact ecosystems, emotional, spiritual, and mental well-being are threatened by climate change. Communities in Alaska and around the world are facing loss of places due to a rapidly changing earth climate system. When migration to a new village site becomes a reality, understanding and recognizing the loss of place caused by disrupted routines, disconnection with the natural environment and loss of identity are the impetus for developing successful migration strategies that transfer the intangible aspects of place to a new location. This study posits a new preservation focus, one that services a broader agenda than saving existing places and encompasses a more inclusive social purpose in community migration, preserving traditional lifeways and assisting communities to self-determine their futures. Preservationists can be advocates for communities within a proposed place-based migration planning framework presented in this study. This treatise presents the concepts of reflective nostalgia—internalizing and acknowledging attachment to past memories, encounters, and traditions that were experienced in one place, and restorative nostalgia—as a way to move with these attachments to a new site. This study recognizes that migration plans must be cultural heritage and-place-based using restorative and reflective nostalgia as tools. Reflective nostalgia can provide salve for remembering and help preserve the past in preparation for restorative nostalgia to drive the creation of a new home. Preserving place—as a way to save identity, traditions, and cultural heritage—is examined through the experiences of four groups in North America. These profiles derive narrative and analyze past displacements and current migrations of the following indigenous groups: Ugiuvangmiut of King Island, Alaska, the Oujé-Bougoumou Cree of Quebec, Canada, the Qaluyaarmiut of Newtok, Alaska, and the Isle de Jean Charles Band of the Biloxi-Chitimacha- Choctaw Tribe, Louisiana. Recommendations for how to support migration and the preservation of place are summarized in a set of principles for various phases of planning. The principles are influenced by the attention to culture and steps in Australia’s Burra Charter. The principles also draw upon climate relocation research in Alaska, as well as goals for migration developed by the Isle de Jean Charles Band of the Biloxi-Chitimacha-Choctaw Tribe, Louisiana. The framework I propose uses restorative nostalgia as a tool to help transfer attachment to place to a new site. This migration framework process also includes indigenous groups taking the lead role in the planning and implementation in major decision making.
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    The Utility of Value: Rectifying the Flaws of Significance and Integrity in American Public Housing
    (2020-06-29) Haarstad, Elsa; MA in Historic Preservation
    Public housing of the twentieth century is a significant historic and cultural resource in the United States. It represents the homes of tens of thousands of people, housing and social reform in America, the evolving practices of services for the poor, and histories of segregation and displacement. However, less than 0.2% of constructed public housing sites have been listed in the National Register of Historic Places. I assert that this lack of recognition in preservation is a result of the intersection of devaluing spaces associated with poor people of color and the erroneous conflation of architectural significance with physical integrity. While several public housing sites are discussed in this thesis, the primary focus is Barry Farm Dwellings’ evaluation of historic significance. Through community engagement and organizing, Barry Farm Dwellings, a site that was originally determined not eligible for historic designation, was successfully designated as a District of Columbia Historic Landmark. This thesis explores why historic preservation has undervalued public housing and the how the tools for evaluations are failing to address complex sites. Grappling with how historic preservationists evaluate historical significance and integrity with regard to public housing, this thesis demonstrates that a values-centered approach can bring more holistic and defensible methods to public housing evaluations. Ideally, this could result in the preservation of historic public housing, or at the very least, result in mitigation measures if the housing is demolished. Public housing is an exceptionally important historic and cultural resource, yet many preservationists and agency reviewers have failed to apply the criteria for evaluating significance and integrity in a good faith effort. This thesis argues that the integration of values-centered preservation methods will yield more robust, transparent, equitable, accessible, and legally defensible preservation practices. Ultimately, the integration of values-centered preservation into the determination of eligibility process will produce a preservation practice that fosters community empowerment, a critical component to equitable preservation of public housing.
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    (2020-05-18) DOOLEY, DON; Schiszik, Lauren; MA in Historic Preservation
    Mexican-Latinx historic resources are under-represented in local, state, and federal historic preservation programs. This treatise focuses on how municipal governments in Los Angeles County can utilize their land-use authority to implement preservation planning policies, tools, and activities to increase the inclusion of Mexican-Latinx resources resulting in better recognition and preservation of these assets. When land-use controls for historic preservation serve a legitimate government interest, public policies can be effectively incorporated into a city’s general plan and zoning code to the lay foundation for a comprehensive citywide historic preservation program to facilitate the recognition, designation, and protection of Mexican-Latinx resources. Diligent implementation of the California Environmental Quality Act also provides the ability for cities to preserve and protect these resources. There are several historic preservation planning tools and strategies available to local government to facilitate Mexican-Latinx resource recognition. They range from leveraging state and federal context statements to conducting local historic resource surveys to adopting a traditional cultural property ordinance like the city of Tarpon Springs, Florida. Collaboration with local preservation organizations and participation in state preservation programs like those offered by the California State Historic Preservation Office and the California Arts Council offer other opportunities for resource identification and designation. Public history is another preservation planning approach to recognize Mexican-Latinx resources. There are various public policy methodologies to make public history creation possible and sustainable. The city of Ann Arbor, Michigan’s Downtown Historical Street Exhibit Program is presented as a case study of a public history program that Los Angeles County cities can replicate.
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    (2020-03) Seay, Kathleen; MA in Historic Preservation
    Historic preservation has long ignored the needs of young people as stakeholders, which seems contrary to the field’s sustainable, intergenerational nature. Preservationists must invest in bringing children and youth to the table, which requires understanding them. It is wise to make a collective conscious effort as a field to spend time now evaluating and considering transgenerational equity and the needs of future generations. This requires continually spending time and effort in becoming aware and mindful of trends, needs and preferences through generational analysis. This treatise will consider why the preservation field must make itself appealing to younger generations, and how this effort will allow for continuous relevancy of preservation as generations age and eventually become future policy makers, investors and stewards. This work specifically looks at how we should engage with our current youngest generations, Gen Z (Born ~1997-2009) and Gen Alpha (born 2010-Present). This treatise offers tangible solutions for engaging with children and youth and proposes practical implementation. This treatise is organized in a case study format and makes use of interviews with representatives of organizations, both within the discipline of historic preservation and outside it, who offer an accurate depiction of our current landscape. The results of compiling such information offer solutions that can be effectively applied within the field through the proposed tool-kit.
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    Protecting Our History Underfoot: Filling in the Regulatory Gaps Through Local Archaeological Review
    (2020-02) LiPira, Nancy; Bradley, Betsy; Seiter, Jane; Stabler, Jennifer; MA in Historic Preservation
    This study identifies the regulatory gap created when federal and state cultural resource management laws do not apply to local or private development actions, resulting in the loss of significant archaeological resources in municipalities across the United States. Incorporating archaeological review into the local development process is the most efficient and practical way to ensure impacts to archaeological resources are considered prior to private development activities. Baltimore City, Maryland, is used as a test case to explore existing and potential solutions for protecting archaeological resources from the impacts of this regulatory gap. Effective local archaeological review practices are identified through an examination of a series of municipalities who have prioritized the protection of their archaeological resources through such a process. Based on this examination, a series of recommendations and next steps is presented for Baltimore City. Vital to the success of a local regulatory review program is support from public officials and citizens. This is only achievable through public engagement and archaeologists’ ability to convey the relevancy of archaeology – using municipal-level archaeology as a tool to connect citizens to their past and to each other and recognizing the power that personal and collective identity has to foster civic pride. As products of municipal government, local regulatory review practices allow for consideration and incorporation of the priorities and contemporary values of local citizens in the archaeological process. With proper and meaningful planning efforts from the city and preservation partners, local regulatory review can successfully fill data gaps in Baltimore’s archaeological record while also contributing to the collective identity of its citizens.
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    Hotels Check in to Historic Buildings: Quantitative and Qualitative Success Factors For Adaptive Reuse of Historic Buildings to Hotels
    (2019-06-18) Maruya, Harvey; MA in Historic Preservation
    Economics drive projects that rehabilitate historic buildings, but environmental and social factors are just as important in the balancing act of benefits that a successful project can provide. The premise of this study is that a project can be successful in achieving the goals of the owner and developer, as well as helping local governments and communities in which the projects are located manage change and maintain a sense of place. Moreover, this study demonstrates that the examination of quantitative and qualitative success factors for the adaptive reuse of historic buildings, as well as dedication to a Triple Bottom Line analysis, will achieve a balanced set of common goals for all parties involved. This study is intended to prepare all entities involved to understand and manage expectations through awareness of economic, environmental, and social aspects of adaptive reuse of historic buildings to hotels. A developer always completes an analysis of some form of quantitative and qualitative factors when considering adaptive reuse of historic buildings. This study explored the quantitative factors that are measurable and will influence the project economics, including the Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit (HRTC) program as a critical factor that attracts and incentivizes developers to undertake adaptive reuse projects. Research revealed that hotel operators can command a room rate premium by utilizing adaptive reuse of historic buildings to hotels due to their architectural character, history, and stories used in branding and marketing that contrasts non-historic and standardized offerings. This study highlights how adaptive reuse hotel projects provide social-economic benefits through long-term job creation, business opportunities, tax revenues, and promoting a sense of place and community. Given the location of their buildings, governments can also benefit from out leasing their historic buildings to private tenants, including hotel companies. Adaptive reuse of historic buildings to hotels provides qualitative values that reinforce a community’s character and sense of place. My study found hotel operators are good stewards of adapted buildings and are aware of the goodwill entailed in establishing relationships within the neighborhood. These projects help maintain the architectural character and history of the historic building and reinforce how the structure and its stories are embedded in the neighborhood. Hotels in historic buildings provide third place in a community where both locals and visitors can meet and socialize. This study found that attention to quantitative and qualitative factors in adaptive reuse of historic buildings to hotels works, and that using Triple Bottom Line analysis can be a good model for the consideration of and balancing the goals and expectations among the developer, hotel operator, local government, and community as consultation on the project takes place.
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    Sacred Preservation: Approaching Religious and Sacred Historic Properties with Appropriate Recognition as Cultural Heritage
    (2019-06-19) Johnson, Woodrow; Bradley, Betsy; Welch Center for Graduate and Professional Studies; MA in Historic Preservation
    This study examines current preservation criteria and treatment considerations specific to sacred and religious properties and identifies opportunities to increase understanding of religious importance as cultural heritage. Cultural heritage, the ability to worship, and teach a culture or belief to the next generation, is inherently living. It is future-oriented with deep roots in the past. It cannot be separated from the reason for the existence and history of a site, as is now common. The current interest in cultural heritage is an opportunity to recover the religious and sacred meanings of buildings and sites throughout the United States. This study presents examples across many cultures, and uses the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints as a case study for sacred preservation due to the organization’s many religious historic sites, preservation efforts, and application of treatments in varying ways. Much of the history in the United States of America is closely tied with religion. Yet, from Native American cultures to all aspects of Euro-American communities, religion is often underrepresented in the evaluation and interpretation of historic sites. Due to the National Register guidance, preservationists recognize churches for architecture, famous speeches or social movements, or even as a contribution to a larger district rather than its primary purpose. This study exposes the contradictions in how we evaluate sites with religious and sacred meanings and how preservation treatments focus only on tangible aspects of sites and often do not support cultural heritage. Specifically, for properties affiliated with religious and sacred value, a three-part categorization of meaning is introduced and applied to existing historic religious sites. The relationships between the meanings, sites, and preservation treatments are explained through examples at Nauvoo. The application of the categorization illustrates value with regards to belief, and correlates the preservation treatments that are most appropriate to those values. Additions and slight alterations to the current Criteria for Evaluation and Criteria Considerations with regards to cultural heritage sites, specifically those sites that are religious or sacred, are proposed to create appropriate recognition.