Top Three Charity Questions Answered for Supporting Preservation Maryland

12/06/2016
By Nicholas A. Redding

We know how many letters you get asking for support, and that you may rightfully ask several questions of any charity requesting your hard-earned dollars. We at Preservation Maryland want to answer those questions for you: Yes, our work is urgent. Yes, we make a real impact. Yes, we have a plan for the future. Please read on to learn more and make a donation to our annual fund:

Preservation Maryland and Burkittsville Preservation Association at Shafer Farm, November 2016.

Nick, and staff, on a recent workday at Shafer Farm, Burkittsville, Frederick County.

A Letter from Executive Director, Nicholas A. Redding

I am writing today to ask you to make a gift to Preservation Maryland’s Annual Fund – a fund that makes possible our work to save Maryland’s history and heritage.

In 2016, this organization came to the aid of a flood damaged Ellicott City, fought for threatened historic homes in Cumberland, negotiated with developers to help protect the boyhood home of Johns Hopkins, advocated for landmark preservation legislation in Annapolis and worked with local preservation groups on six big projects across the state.

In 2017, we plan to do much more.

In making my own charitable giving decisions, I ask three questions of any charity requesting my hard-earned dollars:

  1. Is the work they are doing urgent?
  2. Are they making real impacts?
  3. Do they have a plan for the future and specific goals?
As the Executive Director of Preservation Maryland, I am pleased to say that we can answer in the affirmative to every one of those questions:
  1. Urgency: Our work is urgent. We are in a race against time. Mother Nature, demolition, growth, and neglect are unceasing in their assaults on our historic places. No historic site is immune.
  1. Impacts: In the past year, we provided technical assistance to 50,000 sq. ft. of flood-damaged historic buildings in Ellicott City alone. We earned Johns Hopkins boyhood home a reprieve from demolition. We worked with legislators to pass a tax credit program that will incentivize saving historic buildings. We made nearly $90,000 in direct grants to deserving projects. Our Six-to-Fix program tackled projects all across the state, and together with local organizations, we pushed these difficult projects forward.
  1. Future Plans: Our plan moving forward is strategic and bold. Through our Six-to-Fix program, we’ve selected six new exciting projects around the state to focus our efforts on. We have big plans in Annapolis to work with state legislators to make more preservation funding available. We also plan on continuing our grants, technical assistance and work to save the architectural masterpieces that define our state’s history.

Here are some real-world examples of what you support when you give to Preservation Maryland:

American Brewery

You’ll help save architectural masterpieces from needless demolition. The American Brewery (ca. 1887) is a Baltimore City rehabilitation project made possible thanks to the state rehabilitation tax credit – a program Preservation Maryland worked to re-authorize in 2016.

Mount Aventine

You can help fund the rehabilitation of stunning historic properties. Mount Aventine (ca. 1860), one of Charles County’s most important antebellum homes, received a grant from the Preservation Maryland Heritage Fund to support its rehabilitation as a visitor facility in Chapman State Park.

Senator Eckart

You will give Maryland history a voice in the Maryland General Assembly. Preservation Maryland led advocates from across the state at the 2016 Preservation Advocacy Day. Pictured here are local advocates with Senator Eckardt of Dorchester County.

You will help historic Ellicott City recover from a devastating flood. Preservation Maryland swung into action after the Ellicott City flood – and brought preservation engineers from Keast & Hood and the Structural Group, pictured here, to the city. These efforts resulted in saving every structure initially slated for demolition!

Our work is far from over in Ellicott City, and I could really use your help on the following Six-to-Fix projects:

ellicott-city-preservation-resource-center-preservation-maryland
The Ellicott City Flood Recovery – $20,000 still needed to support field office

Preservation Maryland has established a Preservation Resource Center on Main Street to help address immediate and long-term historic preservation needs following the devastating flood. Donate now.

presmd-valvehouse-2016
Valve House at Clifton Park – $10,500 required to support critical project planning

Clifton Park’s Valve House is deteriorating and needs immediate attention. Preservation Maryland will work to strengthen community support for the revitalization of the Valve House and assist CivicWorks with a sustainable reuse strategy. Donate now.

kent-county-landscape
Cultural Landscapes of the Eastern Shore – $12,000 needed to support outreach efforts

New kinds of farms – wind and solar farms – could drastically alter the rural Kent County landscape. The necessity of clean energy is not in question, but we believe it should not come at the cost of our heritage. Preservation Maryland will work with our partners to identify the threats and find alternative locations to produce clean energy. Donate now.

preservation-maryland-shafer-farm-november-2016
The Hamilton Willard Shafer Farm – $15,000 urgently needed for roof repair and stabilization

Located in Burkittsville, Maryland, the house, barn, and outbuildings at the Shafer Farm have been vacant for years awaiting a new use. The site of a Union general’s headquarters in 1862; Preservation Maryland will provide technical assistance to help stabilize the structure and plan for future use. Donate now.

preservation-maryland-newtowne-manor

Newtowne Manor Religious Complex – $14,000 needed for planning and stabilization

Long associated with the St. Francis Xavier Church and the Jesuit communities that once settled the area, Preservation Maryland will support our partners by providing technical assistance and helping to address the physical needs of the 18th century building. Donate now.

Meagan and Michelle from Preservation Maryland.

Meagan and Michelle from Preservation Maryland.

Historic Cemeteries of Maryland – $7,000 needed for clean-up supplies and grave restoration

Working closely with the Coalition to Protect Maryland Burial Sites, Preservation Maryland will help call attention to the many cemeteries that are in disrepair and organize volunteer clean-up days to make immediate, lasting impacts. Donate now.

Each of these six projects needs your help.

In total, it costs us nearly $100,000 a year in direct services and technical assistance to run this program and help save these historic places.

And, every day I learn about one more historic place that needs our help. I’m sure you’ve seen them on your travels and thought, “I wish someone would do something about that.” Now you can be that someone.

I know how many letters you get asking for support. Here’s why I hope you will support our work:
  1. Preservation Maryland delivers on its promises. When history is threatened, we react. We also work proactively to save places that matter to our supporters.
  1. In the end, we are doing work that will outlast all of us. We are saving places for untold future generations and we are in a race against time.
  1. A gift to this Annual Fund Campaign is a gift to create a legacy for yourself and our state. Your gift ensures our heritage will have a future.

I’m writing my own check now to support this important work. I hope you’ll join me – it’s the simplest way to make a difference today and all year long.

Donate Now to Protect Maryland History

With pride in our past and faith in our future,

Nicholas A. Redding, Executive Director

 

Nicholas A. Redding · Executive Director

Nicholas A. Redding is Preservation Maryland’s Executive Director and between announcing major organizational updates, he often blogs about Maryland and Civil War history.

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