Nominations include Buck Creek Rosenwald School
FRANKFORT, Ky. (Dec. 19, 2012) – A 15-year-old high school student working toward her Girl Scout Gold Award presented her nomination of Buck Creek Rosenwald School for the National Register of Historic Places during a meeting Tuesday of the Kentucky Historic Preservation Review Board at Paul Sawyier Public Library, Frankfort.
Julia Bache, a sophomore at Kentucky Country Day School, is a direct descendant of Benjamin Franklin and said she became interested in history after attending a reunion in 2006 commemorating his 300th birthday.
“Ever since I was a Brownie, I’ve been looking forward to earning my Gold Award, and now I’m actually working on my project,” she said. Bache first earned her Silver Award by creating a program whereby Girl Scouts could earn a patch for learning about the history of Locust Grove, a National Historic Landmark. Her interest in Rosenwald Schools, she said, came about after she became aware of the Jefferson Jacob Rosenwald School in Prospect, which was listed in the National Register earlier this year.
The Rosenwald rural school building program was a major effort to improve the quality of public education for African Americans in the early 20th century. The initiative dates to 1912, when Sears president Julius Rosenwald gave Booker T. Washington permission to use some of the money he had donated to Tuskegee Institute to construct six small schools in rural Alabama. In 1917, Rosenwald set up the Julius Rosenwald Fund to help fund construction of similar schools throughout the South.
“At first, I thought the nomination process would be a straightforward history project, but I’ve also made some really nice connections and unexpected friendships with some of the former students, as well as with the owner of the school,” Bache said.
The father of the current owner attended the school, as did several of his sisters, whom Bache interviewed for her research.
For the second phase of the project, Bache will create a traveling exhibition to go to museums and historical societies around the state. She is planning to display her exhibition at the Kentucky Gateway Museum in Maysville, the Shelby County Historical Society, the Harrodsburg Historical Society and the Jeffersontown History Museum.
“Before I started this project I had no idea that Rosenwald Schools even existed,” she said. “Now I have the opportunity to tell others and want to make more people aware of these important places.”
The Kentucky Historic Preservation Review Board is charged with evaluating eligibility criteria for National Register of Historic Places nominations from Kentucky prior to their submission to the National Park Service (NPS), which administers the program in partnership with state historic preservation offices, including the Kentucky Heritage Council. Approved nominations are forwarded to the NPS, an agency of the U.S. Department of the Interior, for final determination of eligibility, with a decision required within 45 days of receipt.
The Girl Scout Gold Award represents the highest achievement in Girl Scouting and challenges young women to embark on a seven-step project to solve a community problem or perform a public service. This includes identifying an issue, investigating it thoroughly, getting help to build a team, creating a plan, presenting the plan and gathering feedback, taking action, and finally, educating and inspiring.
“I have to say, I am quite inspired by Julia’s work,” said Marty Perry, Heritage Council National Register of Historic Places coordinator. “Writing a nomination requires a great deal of research and writing expertise, not to mention the ability to present your nomination to the review board and address their questions. She is a very impressive young lady.”
In addition to the Rosenwald School, other sites presented were Hindman Historic District in Knott County, the Liggett and Myers Harpring Tobacco Storage Warehouse in Lexington, the Ludlow Theatre in Kenton County, additional documentation for the Highlands Historic District in Louisville, and a revision to the nomination for Rose-Daughtry Farmstead near Bowling Green.
About the six recommended properties
Liggett and Myers Harpring Tobacco Storage Warehouse, 1211 Manchester Street, Lexington – Authored by Janie-Rice Brother, senior architectural historian with the Kentucky Archaeological Survey. Built in 1930, the Liggett and Myers Tobacco Harpring Storage Warehouse occupies a six-acre tract northwest of downtown Lexington. It was constructed in six sections, with each 20,000-square-foot section capable of holding 2,075 hogsheads of packed tobacco.
The warehouse is a metal clad, steel support structure on a poured concrete floor, with each section divided by a brick firewall, and a brick façade for each loading dock. It is being nominated under National Register Criteria A, property associated with events that have made a significant contribution to the broad patterns of our history, significant for its association with the burley tobacco industry in Lexington between 1930 and 1980. The property’s significance was examined within the context, “Tobacco Industry in Lexington, Kentucky 1920-1980.”
According to the author, “While the Harpring Storage Warehouse is a utilitarian structure, likely never to be considered an architectural masterpiece or even as particularly attractive to the causal viewer, its place in the impressive local tobacco industrial landscape should be appreciated and recognized.”
Highlands Historic District (additional documentation) – Authored by Janie Rice Brother, senior architectural historian with the Kentucky Archaeological Survey. Originally listed in the National Register in 1983, the Highlands Historic District is a large, mixed-use district in the eastern section of Louisville covering some 760 acres. At the time of listing, the nomination reported that the district contained approximately 3,000 contributing structures and 200 non-contributing resources.
The current nomination seeks to expand the period of significance from its original span, 1815-1940, to 1815-1962. According to the author, this nomination explores the architectural trends of the World War II and post-war period in Louisville as manifested in the Highlands. “The original nomination states that the Highlands District is a ‘virtual catalog of architectural types for a period of over 80 years, dramatizing on a local level, the national trends from year to year, subdivision to subdivision.’ As such, it is only fitting that the revised (period of significance) would update the district to include the post-war period, a time when Louisville experienced tremendous growth.”
Ludlow Theater, 322-326 Elm Street – Authored by Kathy Martinolich, M.H.P., architectural historian with Cultural Resource Analysts Inc. Constructed in 1946, the Ludlow Theater is a two-story brick building resting on a brick foundation and capped with a flat, built-up roof. The property is located on Ludlow’s main street within the Ludlow Historic District, which was listed in the National Register in 1984. At the time, the theater was not yet 50 years old, and so was evaluated as a non-contributing resource.
This nomination seeks individual listing for the building, which is long and rectangular with some Art Deco elements on the terracotta tile façade. According to the author, “The theater as a whole is largely a modest modern building with little to characterize it within a specific style…the most notable architectural element of the façade is the left bay that projects above the roofline, creating a parapet.”
The building is being nominated under Criteria A, and its significance is being explored within the contexts of “Postwar Movie Theaters in America, 1945–1985,” as well as the local context “Development and Entertainment Culture in Ludlow, Kentucky, 1894–1983.”
Hindman Historic District, Main Street and KY 160 – Authored by Fern Nafziger with the Hindman Cultural Committee. The proposed Hindman Historic District encompasses approximately 25 acres with 40 contributing structures and 21 non-contributing. Most of the buildings are two‐ story residences and commercial buildings constructed between 1903 and 1960. According to the author, “Most are prime examples of local stone masonry construction, quarried no more than a few miles from the construction site.”
The district contains a variety of architectural styles and encapsulates a downtown that has undergone many changes while still maintaining its heritage and cultural identity. Its period of significance extends from 1903 to 1960 and recognizes the significant growth that followed the opening of Hindman Settlement School in 1902. It is being submitted under Criteria A, significant in the area of community development, and Criteria C, property that embodies the distinctive characteristics of a type, period or method of construction or represents the work of a master, or possesses high artistic values, or represents a significant and distinguishable entity whose components lack individual distinction. It is being evaluated within the historic context “Community Development through Eastern Kentucky Mountain Educational Models, 1900‐1960.”
Buck Creek Rosenwald School, 6712 Taylorsville Road, Finchville vicinity – Authored by Julia Bache, a sophomore at Kentucky Country Day School. Buck Creek Rosenwald School was built in 1920 as a one-room schoolhouse to educate African American children at a time when, according to the author, “local school boards were underfunding the education of that population.” The building functioned as a school through 1957. After 1959, its interior was subdivided into several rooms to allow it to be used as a residence.
The property proposed for listing sits on 1/3 of an acre and includes two historic outhouses and three non-contributing sheds. It is being nominated under Criteria A, and its significance evaluated within the historic context “Rosenwald Schools in Kentucky, 1916-1964.” It is one of only two known former schools in Shelby County whose construction occurred through the contribution of the Julius Rosenwald Fund, and both have since been converted to use as homes.
The author notes, “Even with the superficial changes to the property, the Buck Creek School still helps tell the story of a significant episode in America’s evolving history – the way that African Americans acquired greater Civil Rights.”
Rose-Daughtry Farmstead (revision), 6487 Louisville Road, Bowling Green vicinity, authored by Eileen Starr, Amanda Crump and Robin Zeigler, for the Bowling Green-Warren County Planning Office. The historic buildings on the Rose-Daughtry Farmstead are now located within Ephram White Park, where due to the lack of large-scale development in the immediate vicinity, the farmstead still has a rural feel.
The farmstead consists of seven contributing features: three brick buildings dating to the 1880s, two frame buildings that range in date from 1880 to 1910, and two historic water systems – the well and cistern. The house dominates the farmstead. It is a large, brick, T-shaped, two-story residence with intersecting gable roofs. According to the authors, the Rose-Daughtry Farmstead meets National Register Criteria C as a distinctive type of construction, locally significant and displaying the typical qualities of an agricultural complex constructed by a prosperous owner in 1879.
According to the authors, “This farmstead is an important example of a domestic agrarian complex in northeastern Warren County that was utilized by James Rose, his daughter Mattie, and his son-in-law Charles Daughtry from 1879 until Mattie’s death in 1948.” The farmstead’s significance is being evaluated within the historic context “Farmsteads in Warren County, Kentucky, 1879-1949.”
The National Register of Historic Places is the nation’s official list of historic and archaeological resources deemed worthy of preservation. Kentucky has the fourth-highest number of listings in the nation – following New York, Massachusetts and Ohio. Listing can be applied to buildings, objects, structures, districts and archaeological sites, and proposed sites must be significant in architecture, engineering, American history or culture, or possess a special role in the development of our country.
National Register status does not affect property ownership rights but does provide a measure of protection against adverse impacts from federally funded projects. Owners of National Register properties may qualify for federal or state tax credits for certified rehabilitation of these properties or by making a charitable contribution of a preservation easement.
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