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If you enjoy Christmas shopping along one of Kentucky’s charming Main Streets, driving through our historic neighborhoods to view Holiday lights, and visiting our historic landmarks to celebrate the Season, then you know why historic preservation is valuable.  Historic buildings, landscapes and sites contribute to our quality of life, vibrant communities and sense of place.  They are our greatest amenities!

 

Historic preservation gives us great places in which to live, work and play.  Historic places connect us to what’s important to us and define our heritage. They attract visitors from all over the world and appeal to those who enjoy an authentic experience, unique aesthetics and quality craftmanship.  Repurposed properties also conserve building materials and are environmentally responsible, which appeal to a wide audience.

 

Historic preservation is smart growth and an important source of income.  It is an effective, proven tool for a wide range of goals, including small business incubation, entrepreneurship, affordable housing, senior housing, sustainable development, neighborhood stabilization, jobs, heritage tourism and cultural arts.  Historic areas attract investment, businesses, companies, tourists, residents and diverse demographics.

 

Historic preservation is tangible value, and we have the numbers to prove it.  One of the differentials that sets Kentucky apart from other places is our historic sites.  They are the tangible diversity, identity, character, individuality and authenticity that distinguish us.  They represent investment dollars, tax revenues, jobs, community redevelopment, public-private partnerships, neighborhoods, downtowns, landscapes and landmarks – what we call Kentucky Preservation Proud.

 

As someone who appreciates our historic architecture, unique landmarks and special history, we hope you’ll help us keep yourKentucky.  Our heritage and economy rely on it, but we need your support to do it: Our work is needed now more than ever before to advocate for historic preservation on the local, regional and state level, protect legislation that fosters preservation investment, and provide communities with the tools they need to preserve historic properties.

 

With continued support from people who believe in protecting our historic value, we can accomplish a great deal together!

 

Why Historic Preservation is Smart Business

Historic Preservation is a Proven Economic Driver and Critical Tool for Downtown and Neighborhood Revitalization

 

Preservation Kentucky led the charge in 2005 to establish a state historic preservation tax credit to incentivize the rehabilitation of historic commercial and residential buildings in all 120 counties.  This credit has been responsible for saving hundreds of historic buildings, placing them into service and back on the tax rolls, and leveraging millions in private revitalization spending.

Since the Kentucky historic tax credit was signed into law:

  • 738 buildings across the state have been rehabilitated
  • $433 million of private funds have been invested in historic buildings, leveraged through $33.2 million in credits
  • $1.2 million per commercial project has been invested, and $120,097 per residential project has been invested

Kentucky has the fourth highest number of National Register listings with more than 3,200 districts, sites and structures encompassing more than 42,000 historic features – a success managed by our state partner, the Kentucky Heritage Council, along with the Kentucky Historic Resources Inventory of more than 100,000 sites.

 

The economic and community impact of Kentucky’s Main Street Program has been effective, especially in rural and small towns.  In 2016, Main Street communities contributed $100 million to our economy with more than $75 million in private investment, matched by $30.9 million in improvements.  In 2016, they reported 1,452 new jobs, 234 new businesses, 81 new downtown housing unites, 198 building rehabilitation projects, and $51,433,241 in rehabilitation investment.

 

The Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credit

Equally important is the Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program.  In Kentucky, between 2001-2016, the federal HTC:

  • facilitated 345 projects
  • generated more than $500 million in Kentucky development
  • created 9,583 jobs
  • generated $112,187,000 in taxes – $11,811,500 local; $15,982,100 state; and, $84,483,300 federal

 

 

 

 

Placemaking Kentucky:  This Place Matters

by Betsy Hatfield, Executive Director, Preservation Kentucky

 

Placemaking – the management of our spaces, our inspirations and the assets that make our communities special and contribute to our health, happiness and well-being.  

 

Kentucky’s historic architecture is as rich in diversity, style, form and function as the topography that has helped shape it.  From the Appalachian Mountains, hilly Pennyroyal and Cumberland Plateau, to the Western Coal Fields, Jackson Purchase and the Bluegrass – the natural beauty of our mountains, meadows, forests, woodlands, waterways and geological formations have provided the setting for some of the country’s most beautiful, interesting and historic places.

 

Our communities are equally as diverse and tell our varied stories.  River cities, coal mining camps, farmsteads, rural towns, hamlets, railroad villages, Main Streets, courthouse squares, urban neighborhoods and metropolitan downtowns – all with their own personality and sense of place.

 

Practically every style of American architecture is represented in Kentucky’s built environment: Federal farmhouses, shotgun houses, Georgian and Greek Revival mansions, log cabins, stucco bungalows, cast iron and brick Victorian warehouses, colonial cottages, classical stone buildings – all visible reminders of what distinguishes us, shapes our history, influences our qualify of life and inspires our collective, community spaces.

 

How we protect our historic buildings, prehistoric places and landscapes is placemaking.

 

The National Trust’s This Place Matters campaign, created in 2008 as a way for people to shine a spotlight on the historic places that play a role in their lives, is especially meaningful as we’ve recorded more than 50 years of preservation progress since the National Historic Preservation Act of 1966, the milestone legislation that officially galvanized our country into action with national placemaking to legally, consciously and collectively preserve our historic places.

 

It’s also been more than 50 years since the formation of our state partner, the Kentucky Heritage Council, the government agency that has been statewide placemaking, assisting individuals, communities and local governments in making historic preservation an important component of comprehensive community planning.

 

Daniel Boone said ” Heaven must be a Kentucky kind of place.”  Jesse Stuart called Kentucky the heart of America.  We call Kentucky home.  All who live, work and visit here experience the treasures, the assets, the places we value, and the places that define us.  Places that need protecting.

 

Placemaking Kentucky.

 

Learn more about the places and issues that matter to Kentucky on our YouTube channel and in these recently recorded webinars

 

Why We Preserve:  Demystifying Historic Preservation, with Daniel Vivian, PhD, Public History Professor, University of Louisville

VIEW WEBINAR HERE

View Handouts Here

 

Why Preservation is Important for Economic Development, with Joseph Klare, MBA, Director of Real Estate Finance and Investment, The Catalytic Fund

VIEW WEBINAR HERE

 

How to Apply for a Kentucky Fund Grant, with Diana Maxwell, National Trust for Historic Preservation

VIEW WEBINAR HERE

Historic Tax Credits

Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credits have successfully spurred the renovation of historic structures of every period, size, style and type.  Available to projects with qualified rehab expenses, these tax credits have benefitted thousands of property owners across the country who have utilized these incentives to rehabilitate a variety of buildings for both income-producing and owner-occupied historic uses.  Recognizing the importance of preserving our built heritage and the need to encourage the rehabilitation of deteriorated properties, Congress created federal tax incentives in 1976 to promote historic preservation and community revitalization.  Kentucky’s State Rehabilitation Tax Credit was signed into law in 2005 as a provision of the  Governor’s JOBS for Kentucky Tax Modernization Bill.  Utilized separately or bundled together, tax credits are preserving our built heritage by adaptively reusing and repurposing historic buildings across the state, saving Kentucky’s historic architecture for current and future generations.

Download the flier > Historic Rehab Credits Flier 2023

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Preservation Kentucky Excellence in Preservation Awards

Download The Fillable Form > 

> Preservation Ky 2024 Excellence Awards Nomination Form

Recipients Will Be Honored At Our Annual Meeting This Fall

Deadline for Submissions is Friday, August 16

 

 

2023 Award Recipients Demonstrate the Positive Economic and Social Impact of Historic Preservation

 

Each year thousands of Kentuckians work tirelessly to preserve Kentucky’s legacy reflected in our historic buildings, structures, landscapes and prehistoric sites. Preservation Kentucky established the Excellence in Preservation Awards in 2012 to recognize exceptional accomplishments in the preservation, rehabilitation and interpretation of our architectural and cultural heritage, and to distinguish best practices in the field. The awards feature people and projects from rural and urban communities throughout the state, and their stories are inspirational, encouraging reminders of how historic preservation strengthens communities, fosters economic development, maintains and creates jobs, and contributes to our quality of life.  The wide range of recipients is a testament to our statewide reach and the preservation community.  View the list of recipients since 2012 > Preservation Kentucky Excellence Award Recipients 2012-2019

 

Award Categories

Preservation Kentucky’s Excellence in Preservation Awards are named after preservation trailblazers with distinguished volunteer and professional service devoted to preserving our architectural and cultural heritage, and they are given to leaders in the field who set the standard for best practices and serve as outstanding examples of excellence.

 

2023 Recipients

 

National Society of Colonial Dames of America in Kentucky (NSCDA-KY)

Edith S. Bingham Excellence in Preservation Education

For for their exceptional stewardship of two Frankfort sites, the Orlando Brown House, built 1835, and Liberty Hall, built 1796 and designated a National Historic Landmark in 1971, and for the multifaceted educational programs offered there to tell the full American story.

 

Jay and Kelly Shoffner, Middlesboro, Bell County

Linda Bruckheimer Excellence in Rural Preservation Award

For their renovation and adaptive reuse of numerous historic buildings over the years in Downtown Middlesboro, use of local artisans, utilization of historic tax credits, and partnerships with the Middlesboro Main Street Program, HUD and local civic groups to revitalize downtown.

 

Yvonne Giles, Lexington, Fayette County

Helen Dedman Excellence in Preservation Advocacy

For her remarkable post-retirement career as a genealogist, historian, researcher, author, educator, and preservationist to uncover Central Kentucky’s rich African American history and document the gravesites of equine industry workers, Black soldiers with the Civil War’s U.S. Colored Troops, post-war Buffalo Soldiers and famous Harlem Hellfighters, the most decorated American combat unit of WWI.

 

Kelsie Gray, Paducah, McCracken County

Patrick Kennedy Excellence in Preservation Craftsmanship

For her exceptional traditional building skills, crafts techniques, and historic window restoration expertise, which have preserved the original windows on homes, museums, churches, and a variety of buildings throughout Kentucky and beyond.

 

Underhill Associates, Myers Medical Lofts, Louisville, Jefferson County

David L. Morgan Excellence in Kentucky Historic Rehabilitation Tax Credit – Commercial

For their adaptive reuse of an endangered early 1900s dental school into residential apartments for Downtown Louisville’s medical community, and their preservation of this important turn-of-the-century historic landmark, which was slated for demolition.

 

Jeff Jobe, Glasgow, Barren County

Tim Peters and Lois Mateus Excellence in Making a Difference on Main Street

For for his transformative renovation projects, marketing savvy and small business recruitment, which was a catalyst for the revitalization of Glasgow’s Main Street corridor and pivotal for the resurgence of their downtown.

 

Kenneth Thomson, Milton, Trimble County

Ann Early Sutherland Excellence in Environmental Preservation

For for his dedicated volunteer service in the Trimble County river community of Milton, where he helped prevent erosion at the town’s historic cemetery and conserve the natural habitat and organic gardens at the historic Payne Hollow homestead of Harlan and Anna Hubbard.

 

Our Hosts – Darrell and Debbie Poynter and their son Chris Pointer, Owners of the Trackside Restaurant & Bar at the Paris Train Station 

Recipients were recognized on Saturday, September 23 at the historic Paris Train Depot, 2018 recipient of our Linda Bruckheimer Excellence in Rural Preservation Award for the great care taken by owners Darrell and Debbie Poynter and their son Chris to preserve its historic integrity and heritage.  Their conversion of the depot into the Trackside Restaurant & Bar at the Paris Train Station is an outstanding example of how preserving an historic property contributes to the fabric of our community. By putting the building back into service and on the tax rolls, running a business, employing local residents, and reinforcing the preservation cause, the Poynters are giving back to their community and the Commonwealth with benefits tenfold.  We appreciate the Poynters’ generosity and hospitality to host us this year!

*View the list of recipients since 2012 > Preservation Kentucky Excellence Award Recipients 2012-2019

 

 

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Preservation How-To Technical Briefs

The National Park Service has a helpful series of Technical Briefs on preserving, rehabilitating and restoring historic buildings.  These publications help historic property owners recognize and resolve common problems prior to work, and recommend methods and approaches consistent with the historic character of buildings.  They are especially useful to those who want to utilize Historic Preservation Tax Credits because they are consistent with the Secretary of Interior Standards for Rehabilitation.

 

There are two ways to search:

1.  Search by Comprehensive Alphabetized List of Topics from Abatement to Zinc  > Preservation Briefs by Topic A through Z

 

2.  Search by General Topics Listed Below >  National Park Service Preservation Briefs

  1. The Preservation of Historic Signs
  2. The Preservation and Repair of Historic Log Buildings
  3. The Maintenance and Repair of Architectural Cast Iron
  4. Painting Historic Interiors
  5. The Repair, Replacement, and Maintenance of Historic Slate Roofs
  6. The Preservation and Repair of Historic Clay Tile Roofs
  7. Mothballing Historic Buildings
  8. Making Historic Properties Accessible
  9. The Preservation and Repair of Historic Stained and Leaded Glass
  10. Applied Decoration for Historic Interiors: Preserving Historic Composition Ornament
  11. Understanding Old Buildings: The Process of Architectural Investigation
  12. Protecting Cultural Landscapes: Planning, Treatment and Management of Historic Landscapes
  13. Appropriate Methods of Reducing Lead-Paint Hazards in Historic Housing
  14. Removing Graffiti from Historic Masonry
  15. Holding the Line: Controlling Unwanted Moisture in Historic Buildings
  16. Preserving Historic Ceramic Tile Floors
  17. The Seismic Rehabilitation of Historic Buildings
  18. The Maintenance, Repair and Replacement of Historic Cast Stone
  19. The Preparation and Use of Historic Structure Reports
  20. The Use of Awnings on Historic Buildings: Repair, Replacement and New Design
  21. Preserving Historic Wooden Porches
  22. The Preservation and Reuse of Historic Gas Stations
  23. Maintaining the Exterior of Small and Medium Size Historic Buildings
  24. Preserving Grave Markers in Historic Cemeteries
  25. Historic Decorative Metal Ceilings and Walls: Use, Repair, and Replacement
  26. Lightning Protection for Historic Buildings

51.  Secretary of Interior Standards for Preservation

52.  Secretary of Interior Standards for Rehabilitation

53.  Secretary of Interior Standards for Restoration

54.  Secretary of Interior Standards for Reconstruction

55.  Secretary of Interior Guidelines for Sustainability

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Saving Kentucky’s Historic Courthouses

Excerpt from “What Our Historic Courthouses Tell Us About Kentucky’s Story” by Elizabeth A. ‘Betsy’ Hatfield, published in History’s Footsteps, Sherry Jelsma, editor, a Shelby County Historical Society Publication, 2020.

 

One of the most endearing and defining characteristics of Kentucky courthouses is the courthouse square.  Throughout the state, courthouse squares announce county seats and showcase the most recognizable architecture in town, the Courthouse.  These picturesque places are the heart of every community.  Each has a story to tell about Kentucky, from its formative years to its most recent.

 

Kentucky’s courthouses have endured moments of great discourse in American history, leaving some tattered in the wake.  Others have faced controversy for simply being historic, but those that have endured are better for it.  Their placement and role in our communities has made them the site of many noteworthy events and personal milestones.  All are receptacles of our varied and diverse history.

 

Architecture tells our story.  It is an outward expression of the life and times of our people—and the buildings we save tell us what stories we value.  As canons of our heritage, Kentucky’s historic courthouses stand as our most important and prominent landmarks.  They tell how we grew from a frontier settlement to the fifteenth state of the union to one of the most scenic and vibrant states in America.  Geography, natural resources, craftsmanship, artistry and emerging technologies shaped our courthouses into the community landmarks that we enjoy today.  Their beginnings were humble, but their path to monuments of justice was pure Kentucky ingenuity.

 

Photos:  The historic Oldham County Courthouse in LaGrange was saved from demolition but not without sacrifice.  Leaders stripped the historic fabric from its interior and moved its hollow shell threes times before repositioning it on the courthouse square to make way for a massive justice center to tower over the graceful building that once stood as the prominent, stately centerpiece of this charming downtown.

Photo taken between 1875 and 1920, looking southeast.
Circa 1920s photo, looking east, shows the historic addition that was demolished in the 1990s. The horse is tied to the fire bell.
1864 photo of the 1828 Courthouse taken by F. L. Craft, looking southwest. The cupola is barely visible.
1875 Courthouse with a limewash, looking southwest, shows the 1890 Victorian era house and jail, which were demolished in the 1990s.
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Improvements to KY’s State Historic Preservation Tax Credit Make it More Accessible to More Communities!

Kentucky Legislators made significant improvements to make our state historic tax credit more functional and competitive with surrounding states, providing a much needed boost for Kentucky’s economy, local job market and state revenue.

 

THE NEW IMPROVEMENTS AND WHY THEY’RE IMPORTANT TO KENTUCKY

1. The maximum credit a taxpayer can claim for commercial, income-producing properties was increased from $400,000 to $10 Million

2. The maximum credit a taxpayer can claim for residential owner-occupied properties increased from $60,000 to $120,000
3. The transferability provision was reinstated to allow nonprofits to sell their credit to financial institutions taxed under the income tax statutes instead of the bank franchise tax, which expired in January 2020.

 

KEY POINTS OF KENTUCKY’S IMPROVED HISTORIC TAX CREDIT PROGRAM
Kentucky’s Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program was increased from $5Million to $100Million in 2020, but without changes to the project caps.  In 2021, legislators revised the statutes to align with the program, increased the project caps and reinstated a provision for nonprofits that expired with the Bank Franchise Tax in 2020.
These significant changes:
>Make Kentucky more competitive with bordering states, which until Kentucky’s was improved, had better state historic preservation tax credits programs attracting Kentucky developers away from our state and to theirs;
>Increase access to the credit so more people and communities can utilize and benefit from it;
>Reinstates the transferability provision so nonprofits can benefit from the credit, conserve funds and use donor dollars for other endeavors.

 

KENTUCKY’S HISTORIC PRESERVATION TAX CREDIT PROGRAM
Historic tax credits are financial incentives to encourage private investment in historic buildings by giving building owners tax incentives that result in benefits to the public at large and communities of all sizes.
Kentucky’s HTC program has successfully incentivized private investment for decades, but until recently, we were still at a competitive disadvantage with surrounding states due to our current program restrictions. Meanwhile, competing states were enjoying substantially higher investments and stronger tax bases while luring investors away from Kentucky.
The 2021 legislation resolved these issues and leveled the playing field with a more functional and competitive program to revitalize our historic assets!

 

PROVEN ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT TOOL AND RETURN ON INVESTMENT
>In 2021, $136,633,219 in private investment was approved pending completion of 98 projects – impressive data even in non-covid years.
>From 2005-2021, our state historic tax credit resulted in 1,166 buildings rehabilitated across Kentucky and $709 million of private funds investedin historic buildings, leveraged through $51.5 million in credits – an impressive ROI–Return on Investment

 

HOW KENTUCKY’S HTC PROGRAM HELPS STATE, LOCAL ECONOMY
1. Boosts tax revenues with new property, sales and payroll taxes
2. Returns more revenue to our state treasury than it costs
3. Stimulates local and state economies with income for improvements
4. Provides a credit for owner-occupied buildings, unlike the Federal HTC
5. Benefits the state immediately with tax revenue during construction
6. Returns vacant, underutilized and endangered buildings to tax rolls
7. Creates new and permanent jobs, maintains a strong workforce
8. Provides much-needed revenue and incentives for rural communities
9. Revitalizes neighborhoods, downtowns and Main Street communities
10. Reverses economic decline in central business districts
11. Spurs development in surrounding areas
12. Increases appeal to out-of-state developers and businesses
13. Acts as a catalyst for additional local investment
14. Encourages revitalization in blighted areas
15. Encourages adaptive reuse of buildings that risk demolition
16. Conserves building materials and craftsmanship
17. Supports sustainable green construction
18. Restores civic pride to communities
19. Enhances our visual environment and aesthetics
20. Preserves historic architecture, connects us to our heritage and enriches our quality of life

 

OVERVIEW OF KENTUCKY’S HTC PROGRAM
1. Enacted into law in 2005, a low risk-high return program
2. Available to all 120 counties and communities of all sizes
3. With 3,200 historic districts, sites and structures listed in the National Register of Historic Places encompassing more than 42,000 historic properties in all 120 counties, our HTC Program is a smart way to capitalize on valuable assets
4. Since 2005, has created more than 17,500 jobs and leveraged more than $1Billion value of investments in projects reviewed annually by the Kentucky Heritage Council, which administers the program
5. Can be utilized in tandem with the Federal Historic Preservation Tax Credit – a key provision that strengthens use and effectiveness for both programs.

 

>The Federal and State Historic Preservation Tax Credit Programs are administered by the Kentucky Heritage Council, an agency of the Tourism, Arts and Heritage Cabinet.
>Learn more about how tax credits help communities and how the application process works here.

The demand for Kentucky’s Historic Preservation Tax Credit has exceeded its resources since it was signed into law with the JOBS for KY Tax Modernization Bill in 2005.  Kentucky’s HTC leverages millions in private capital that likely would not otherwise come to invest in our state, increases the property tax base for local governments, creating new local and state revenues, and restores historic downtowns—a key tourism draw, driving hotel stays, bringing out of state spending to Kentucky, providing jobs and building local pride.

Kentucky’s HTC starts reinvesting in communities throughout the Commonwealth immediately, from Paducah to Pikeville, in both rural and urban areas, by employing skilled labor, purchasing local goods and often putting vacant buildings back into use and on the tax rolls.  It’s one of the best tools we have to protect our history while investing in it.
Kentucky’s Historic Preservation Tax Credit has been a vital economic development tool to revitalize neighborhoods, Main Streets and downtowns, put Kentuckians to work and keep them in the workforce, return once-vacant buildings to tax rolls, and generate income for community improvements.

When HB 659 passed, it:

  • Increased the maximum credit a taxpayer can claim for commercial, income-producing properties from $400,000 to $10 Million
  • Increased the maximum credit a taxpayer can claim for residential, owner-occupied properties from $60,000 to $120,000
  • Allowed the credit to be transferred to financial institutions that are now taxed under the income tax statutes instead of the bank franchise tax

Benefits to Kentucky:

  • Makes Kentucky more competitive with bordering states with better state historic preservation tax credit programs
  • Increases access to the credit so more people and communities can utilize and benefit from it
  • Reinstates the transferability provision so nonprofits can benefit from the credit
  • Allows more projects to benefit statewide
  • Helps more communities with revitalization incentives
  • Stimulates the economy with increased property, sales and payroll taxes
  • Increases appeal to out-of-state developers and businesses

The Staun Family used Kentucky’s state Historic Tax Credit for residential properties to renovate their home in Newport, Campbell Co., and received a Preservation Kentucky Excellence in Preservation Award in 2014.

Formerly Noonan’s Grocery in Frankfort, this mixed use building with first floor retail and second floor residential was saved from demolition by using Kentucky’s Historic Tax Credit.  The Franklin Co. owners received a Preservation Kentucky Excellence in Preservation Award in 2014.

Paducah’s City Hall, a Mid-Century Modern building designed by internationally acclaimed architect Edward Durrell Stone in 1963, was saved from demolition utilizing Kentucky’s Historic Tax Credit.  The City of Paducah, McCracken Co., received a Preservation Kentucky Excellence in Preservation Award in 2019 for preserving this important landmark.

Potter’s Castle in Bowling Green, Warren Co. utilized Kentucky’s state Historic Tax Credit for residential properties and received a Preservation Kentucky Excellence in Preservation Award in 2016.

Our state historic tax credit is important to Kentucky’s Main Street Program.  In Whitley County, the tax credit is revitalizing Williamsburg, population 5,245.

Once a home, this 1908 Queen Anne style cottage in Lexington, Fayette Co., was renovated into a doctors’ office using Kentucky’s state Historic Tax Credit and received Preservation Kentucky’s Excellence in Preservation Award in 2015.

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Preservation Kentucky’s Easement Program

One of the best ways to protect and preserve historic properties is with a conservation easement.  Placing a conservation / historic preservation easement on a building monitored by Preservation Kentucky ensures the preservation of the property in perpetuity.  It may also qualify as a charitable donation, providing financial tax benefit to the owner.

A conservation easement is a legal tool used to preserve the integrity of a historic building, site, object or landscape. The legal structure of the easement agreement allows the owner to retain rights of ownership, while granting Preservation Kentucky the right to prevent current and future owners from making changes that would compromise the historic integrity of the resource.  An executed easement agreement becomes part of the deed record and is binding in perpetuity.   A conservation easement is the single best assurance an owner has that a building will be preserved, maintained and protected.

 

 

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Congratulations to Our 2019 Excellence in Preservation Award Recipients!

Each year thousands of Kentuckians work tirelessly to preserve Kentucky’s legacy reflected in our historic buildings, structures, landscapes and prehistoric sites. Preservation Kentucky established the Excellence in Preservation Leadership Awards in 2012 to recognize exceptional accomplishments in the preservation, rehabilitation and interpretation of our architectural and cultural heritage, and to  distinguish best practices in the field.

 

Congratulations to our 2019 Excellence in Preservation Award Recipients! 

 

Award Categories

Preservation Kentucky’s annual Excellence in Preservation leadership awards are named after Kentuckians who have a long service of dedicated volunteer and/or professional time devoted to preserving Kentucky’s architectural, cultural and prehistoric heritage, and underscore the economic development, aesthetic and quality of life benefits of historic preservation.

 

Tim Peters and Lois Mateus Making a Difference on Main Street – Inaugural Award

Kentucky Heritage Council

For individuals who have demonstrated outstanding dedication to historic preservation by restoring, rehabilitating and adaptively reusing a commercial or residential building(s) that has served as a catalyst for revitalizing a Main Street corridor.  Special consideration will be given for individuals who have renovated a building in communities with a population of 75,000 or less.

 

Edith S. Bingham Excellence in Preservation Education

Northern Kentucky Restoration Weekend

For preservation educators, projects, or programs that have demonstrated excellence in traditional or nontraditional educational arenas.

 

Christy and Owsley Brown II Excellence in Public Service to Preservation 

Clest Lanier, Founder, Kentucky Center for African American Heritage

For public officials or civil servants who have demonstrated leadership in preservation policy on the local, state and/or national level.

 

Linda Bruckheimer Excellence in Rural Preservation Award

Blue Wing Landing Farm, Doug and Kathleen Martin, Owen County

For those devoted to preserving Kentucky’s rural heritage with special consideration given to small towns with a population less than 10,000.

 

Helen Dedman Excellence in Preservation Advocacy

Tom Eblen, Photojournalist, Retired Columnist, Lexington

For advocates, volunteers and/or professionals who have shown great commitment of time and resources to furthering historic preservation across the state.

                                   

Barbara Hulette Excellence as Young Preservationist

Brittney Adams, Warrenwood Manor, Danville

For those under the age of 40 who have demonstrated exceptional leadership in historic preservation endeavors.

 

Patrick Kennedy Excellence in Preservation Craftsmanship

Eddie Black, Central Kentucky

For craftsmen and craftswomen who have demonstrated exceptional skills and restoration techniques.

 

David L. Morgan Excellence in Kentucky Historic Preservation Tax Credit

Paducah City Hall, McCracken County  

East Broadway Shotgun Houses, Vital Sites, Louisville

For commercial and residential projects that have demonstrated excellence in rehabilitation using Kentucky’s State Historic Preservation Tax Credit.

         

Ann Early Sutherland Excellence in Environmental Preservation

American Life Building, Louisville

For leaders who have made a strong connection between the preservation of historic places and environmental concerns, and understand the relationship between the preservation of our built environment and our natural environment.

 

Preservation Kentucky Excellence in Kentucky Cultural Heritage

111 Whiskey Row, Louisville

For an organization, site or attraction that has preserved and advanced Kentucky’s architectural, cultural and social history through dynamic interpretation and the promotion of historic resources that contribute significantly to our tourism industry and the preservation of our heritage.

 

 

Thank You to Preservationist and

Philanthropist Christy Brown for

Hosting Us at Her Beautiful

Home on Saturday, October 19!

 

 

 

 

Tim Peters and Lois Mateus Making a Difference on Main Street – Inaugural Award

 

New to Preservation Kentucky’s annual Excellence in Preservation Awards in 2019 is a category in honor of  Tim Peters and Lois Mateus, historic preservation champions whose projects have been a catalyst for revitalization along Harrodsburg’s Main Street.  The purpose of their award is to recognize individuals who have invested in communities where others have been hesitant to take the risk and do the work.

 

Recipients of this year’s award were recognized at Preservation Kentucky’s Annual Meeting and Excellence in Preservation Awards on Saturday, October 19, in Jefferson County.

 

Both long-time preservationists, Tim and Lois have an impressive history of taking on risky projects and seeing them to successful completion.  To date, they have renovated eight buildings in Harrodsburg, numerous 19thcentury buildings in Louisville, and some of the oldest structures in Kentucky on their historic Mercer County farm.

 

Together, they have received many awards and recognitions, including the prestigious Ida Lee Willis Community Preservation Award, River Field’s Land Hero Award for farmland preservation, and the Preservation Kentucky-Linda Bruckheimer Excellence in Rural Preservation and Preservation Kentucky-Ann Early Sutherland Excellence in Environmental Preservation Awards.  Among their ongoing efforts:  Tim serves on the Kentucky Heritage Council, an appointment from Governor Matt Bevin, and Lois is a member of the Kentucky Historical Society Foundation and co-chair of Harrodsburg’s 250thCelebration in 2024.

 

The Tim Peters and Lois Mateus Excellence in Making a Difference on Main Street Award will recognize individuals who have demonstrated outstanding dedication to historic preservation by restoring, rehabilitating and adaptively reusing a commercial or residential building(s) that has served as a catalyst for revitalizing a Main Street corridor.  Special consideration will be given for individuals who have renovated a building in communities with a population of 75,000 or less.

 

“Keeping Main Street alive is the primary motivation for Tim and me,” Mateus says. “Restored antique shops, restaurants, art galleries, and boutiques not only improve and enhance the built environment, they bring life to the human environment as people shop, mix and mingle together.”

 

Peters adds, “Recognizing the shared history, connection, and social dialogue that communities lose when retailers disappear from Main Street, we have put emphasis on commercial tenants at the street level, but also on attractive living spaces on the upper levels. Our experiences in both Harrodsburg, a small town, and in the NuLu district on East Market Street in Louisville prove that people are eager to live downtown.”

 

Lois and Tim’s dedication to historic preservation and land conservation is reflected in their work on their Tallgrass Farm in Mercer County.  The property features 1,000 acres of farmland and trails, a log homestead, original stone foundations, dry stack stone walls made from stone of the farm and five tobacco Barns.  Tim and Lois’ efforts include the preservation of a rare 1802 stone and timber barn, one of only two remaining Pennsylvania bank barns still standing in Kentucky.  In 2004, they founded the Tallgrass Farm Foundation, an educational and culturally sustainable resource model that teaches students stewardship of natural and agricultural resources.

 

Lois grew up in the 1830 Nathaniel Burrus House in Harrodsburg.  A co-founder of the Kentucky Museum of Arts and Crafts and retired Brown-Forman executive who oversaw the restoration of Woodford Reserve Distillery and the company’s historic properties, Lois’ career reflects her passion for the arts, historic preservation, culture and community service. Tim, who was Louisville’s first LEED Platinum Builder with The Green Building on East Market Street, has owned and operated a general contracting company for 42 years and earned a reputation for championing adaptive reuse of historic buildings throughout the state. Both have extensive experience as nonprofit board members, community leaders and philanthropists.  More information about the couple’s careers, community service and historic farmland can be viewed here – http://www.tallgrassfarmfoundation.org/whoweare.html.

 

“We are so honored to have Lois and Tim’s sponsorship for a Main Street award,” said Preservation Kentucky executive director Betsy Hatfield.  “Our Main Street communities are the heart of Kentucky, and this is a wonderful opportunity to recognize those who are preserving endangered buildings in communities where an investor is needed to spark and lead revitalization efforts. Tim and Lois have been active preservationists for many years.  Their leadership in Harrodsburg invigorated an important historic community and inspired others to do so same.”

 

“Tim and Lois have been stellar preservationists and advocates for Kentucky’s heritage,” said Preservation Kentucky board chair Grady Walter.  “Their preservation successes are inspirational in their own right and remind us that historic Preservation strengthens communities.”

 

Photo left to right:  Tim Peters, Augusta Brown Holland and Lois Mateus receiving the Preservation Kentucky-Ann Early Sutherland Excellence in Environmental Preservation Award for Louisville’s NuLu Business District on April 20, 2013, at the Artisan Enterprise Center in Covington.  Photo Credit: Becky Gorman.

 

 

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Historic Tax Credits: Significant, Positive Impact of Federal Historic Tax Credit in Kentucky

The Federal Historic Preservation Rehabilitation Tax Credit (Federal HTC) is a critical economic development tool with a proven track record that generates economic growth, jobs and revitalization.  It is the single most important incentive to encourage the redevelopment and reuse of our nation’s historic and culturally significant properties.
 
For more than 40 years, the United States tax code has included this provision for the rehabilitation of properties listed in the National Register of Historic Places, resulting in tens of thousands of historic properties being saved, repurposed and brought back to life in cities, towns and rural areas across our country.
 
This flier details the key facts and impact of the Federal Historic Tax Credit in Kentucky
 
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Photo: Historic First Christian Church now Immanuel Baptist Church, 850 South Fourth Street, Louisville, Jefferson County – recipient of Preservation Kentucky’s 2018 Excellence in Historic Preservation Award for Federal and Kentucky Historic Tax Credits.

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Rosenwald Schools in Kentucky

The Rosenwald School building program of the early 20th century grew out of a vision for educational reform for African Americans initiated by Booker T. Washington, principal of the Tuskeegee University in Alabama. Washington developed a plan to educate African Americans in the south as part of his educational philosophy of advancing education for blacks across the country. Through his partnership with Julius Rosenwald, the CEO of Sears, Roebuck & Co., Washington developed a plan to fund and build schools in rural southern communities.
 
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Kentucky’s Rosenwald schools are an important legacy and their presence on our landscape reminds us of the African American experience in Kentucky, the universal quest for education and the strength and perseverance of African Americans during a time blighted by the socioeconomic framework of the post-Civil War segregation period.
 
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Pioneer Log Houses in Kentucky

The log cabin is as much an image as it is a building. It evokes thoughts of maple syrup and the American frontier. It is an important setting in the stories of real and fictional people such as Abraham Lincoln, Daniel Boone and Uncle Tom. Perhaps because of this, people give the log cabin a status no other type of house enjoys. Demolitions of 200-year-old houses suddenly stop when logs are discovered. The reality is more complex than the popular image of the log cabin in a small clearing. Log houses range from crude huts to fancy plantation houses. City houses, churches, jails and courthouses were also built of logs.
 
This essay by William J. “Bill” Mcintire addresses the complexities of the log cabin through a focus on the earliest log houses in Kentucky and serves as an introduction to the origins, construction, forms, finish and furnishing of log houses in the frontier and early statehood period, from 1770 to 1800.
 
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