Tennessee Preservation Trust

Tennessee Preservation in the News 12.3.12

Posted: 12/03/2012

Here’s what happened last week in Tennessee…

Planning for the annual Statewide Preservation Conference continues. Save the Date for May 16-18th in Cookeville, TN. Save the Date notices are going out soon. Become a member to receive a significant discount on your registration!

Have you visited our new website yet? If not, please stop by www.preservetn.org and check it out. More will be added and weekly updates like this will be posted regularly on our site. Let us know what you think by using our new “Contact” page.

What does “sequestration” and all the budget cut discussions up in DC have to do with preservation efforts here in TN? EVERYTHING! The Historic Preservation Fund faces an 8.2% cut of approximately $5 million as does the National Recreation and Preservation Account (the source for National Heritage Area funding). The Advisory Council on Historic Preservation faces an 8.2% cut of $492 thousand.

Who would that affect in TN? The Tennessee Historical Commission, as our SHPO, would possibly see budget cuts as would the TN National Civil War Heritage Area (the only Heritage Area that covers an ENTIRE state). Not to mention the historic sites and battlefields that benefit from these groups.

Last week, University of Tennessee began demolishing three buildings built in the 1920s. Why are they tearing down three of the oldest buildings on campus? To make way for a larger Student Union (despite the fact that they already have one). UT’s Temple Neighborhood made TPT’s Ten in Tenn Endangered List in 2009 and the entire UT campus made Knox Heritage’s Fragile Fifteen List earlier this year. For more details, click here.

The Carter House marked the 148th anniversary of the Battle of Franklin this weekend by covering the lawn with 2000 luminaries, each representing a casualty from the battle (both Union and Confederate). Battle of Franklin sites were listed on the 2005 Ten in Tenn list as development and lack of formal protection threatened the hallowed battlefield. Many parcels of the battlefield have been purchased or donated over the past 7 years and the Battle of Franklin Trust continues to work with partners to purchase additional battlefield property.

Julian Bibb, a Franklin attorney, was named November’s Darrell Waltrip Automotive Hometown Hero last week and donated his award to Franklin’s Charge, a Civil War preservation organization he founded dedicated to preserving America’s threatened Civil War battlefields in Williamson County.

TPT’s own Dr. Michael Birdwell led a team in 2006 to find the battlefield where Sgt. Alvin C. York, a native of Fentress County, became an American war hero. As we approach the 100th anniversary of WWI, Dr. Birdwell and others are hoping to renew interest in the War. The group returned to TN with more than 1400 artifacts and found evidence of the location where York’s company killed 21 German soldiers and captured another 132 during an attack Oct. 8, 1918 and have a new exhibit on display at the Military Branch of the Tennessee State Museum, which is in the War Memorial Building on 6th Ave. in downtown Nashville. Admission to “In the Footsteps of Sergeant York” is free. Learn more about the expedition and the artifacts found here.

Do know of a story that we do not know about and should add? Let us know and we’ll add it.