Preservation Maryland staff at our Phoenix Rising gala, October 2019.

Top 11 Preservation Victories of 2019

By Preservation Maryland

In 2019, Preservation Maryland achieved several important victories across our major programs, including advocacy, grantmaking, smart growth, historic trades, and all of our research and education efforts. At any one-time, our staff is working on many active and on-going projects and what follows is just a sample of our donor-supported work of which we are most proud.

Nicholas Redding surveying Ellicott City flood damage, 2016.

1. Ellicott City’s Safe and Sound Plan

Despite two disastrous floods in two years plus the very real threat of large-scale demolition, historic Ellicott City is being saved. It wasn’t easy and the work is still ongoing, but Ellicott City is now on a path to sustainable preservation because of Preservation Maryland’s quick response and continued commitment.

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SB741 signing in Annapolis, 2019.

2. Legislative & Funding Victories

Our boots-on-the-ground approach to advocacy in Annapolis gets results! A decade-long elimination of state funding for preservation was reversed resulting in the addition of $2.6 million since 2018. This is in addition to legislation improving the state historic tax credit to work better with affordable housing incentives and a new opportunity zone program.

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Restored WWII crane supported by our Six-to-Fix program.

3. Creating Positive Change through Six-to-Fix

What started out a few years ago as a handful of focused priority projects has yielded 30 examples of preservation success all across Maryland. Our diverse portfolio of projects are becoming a model for successful engagement to help preserve endangered historic properties and develop new, cutting edge preservation programs and iniatives.

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Old Line State Summit attendees in Frederick, 2019.

4. Smarter Growth for Frederick County

In partnership with community organizations and civic leaders, Smart Growth Maryland helped secure the Livable Frederick plan for Frederick County that supports sustainable communities, historic preservation, and environmental conservation. It is a triple win for the future of Frederick County.

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Lt. Gov. Boyd Rutherford with Highland Beach leadership, 2018.

5. Expanded Grantmaking

By collaborating with preservation partners who want to focus their resources in a particular geographic area, we have doubled the amount of annual funding to $200,000 in 2019 our Heritage Fund grant program. These grants are awarded across the state and focused in Baltimore City and Ellicott City.

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Traditional Trades Apprenticeship Program participants in Tennessee, 2019.

6. The Campaign for Historic Trades

We are building the national career pathway for young people and veterans who want to learn the high-demand traditional trades of historic preservation. While the program is headquartered in Maryland at the National Historic Preservation Training Center, a unit of the National Park Service, the Campaign is a transformational opportunity for America.

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7. Protection of Forested Land in Charles County

With our partners in the Smarter Growth Alliance for Charles County, we successfully defeated a proposal for a utility-scale solar facility that would have clear-cut 240 of Southern Maryland’s largest forest. We believe there’s a better path forward that balances clean energy and forest conservation.

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South Mountain Battlefield, 2019. Photo by The Washington Post.

8. Commitment to Battlefield Protection

In partnership with organizations around the state, we’ve launched several high-profile battlefield preservation and archaeology projects in the past year – including at South Mountain, Fort Tonoloway and in the coming year, Falling Waters. We’re working hard to save the places where America’s story was forged in blood.

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Preservation Maryland and partners in Anne Arundel cemetery, 2019.

9. Saving Historic Cemeteries

As the final resting places of our fellow Americans, cemeteries are a powerful record of past generations. We doubling down on our commitment to protect historic cemeteries by documenting more than 100 across Maryland with a brand new digital app and working locally in Anne Arundel County on a public and proactive  approach to theatrened sites.

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Special live recording of PreserveCast at the Old Line State Summit, 2017.

10. The Voice of Preservation

We have now broadcast more than a hundred episodes of our award-winning podcast, PreserveCast,  that focuses on the intersection between historic preservation and technology.  This one-of-a-kind podcast brings preservation to life for listeners across the globe. In 2020, we’ll use this megaphone to share the heroic tales of Maryland’s Suffragists.

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Jonathan Street in Hagerstown, Maryland.

11. Historic Property Reinvestment Fund

We have raised the funds we need to launch a new reinvestment revolving fund for historic properties in Maryland. The new fund will allow Preservation Maryland to make strategic direct investments in endangered historic buildings that would otherwise be lost to the bulldozer’s blade and directly rechart their future towards reuse.

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Your support is essential to our success. When you make your 2019 Annual Appeal gift, you should know that last year 90% of our income was spent on programs, with only 10%  going to administration. That makes us one of the most efficient and highly rated non-profits anywhere. Period!

Gifts to Preservation Maryland are tax-deductible to the fullest extent of the law. Your generous donation will be invested wisely in helping us protect the irreplaceable.  We pride ourselves on preserving what makes Maryland unique. We know you do, too.

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Preservation Maryland

Preservation Maryland is Maryland’s first and largest organization dedicated to preserving the state’s historic buildings, neighborhoods, landscapes, and archaeological sites.

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