America’s Most Endangered Historic Places

National Trust for Historic Preservation releases 2009 list of 11 Most Endangered historic places in AmericaThe National Trust for Historic Preservation announced this week its 2009 list of the America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places. The NTHP began compiling these lists in 1988; making this year the 22nd time they have done so. The awareness raised by these lists has saved dozens of sites, and elevated many to “favorable” rather than “endangered” status.

Details about each of the 2009 endangered sites have been gathered together in a post on the National Trust’s blog, Preservation Nation. Meanwhile, the NTHP site devotes an individual web page to each place, giving more information on the significance of the sites, presenting videos and pictures, and explaining what the public can do to help. The NTHP has also created a Google map that includes each historic place.

Included in the 2009 list of America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places are the following:

  • Century Plaza Hotel, Los Angeles, CA
    A Los Angeles hotel, opened in 1966, “which fueled the development of Century City and forged its reputation as a world-class destination.”
  • Miami Marine Stadium, FL
    This 1963 stadium in South Florida “is both a South Florida landmark and an icon of modern design.”
  • Dorchester Academy, Midway, GA
    Dorchester Academy is a National Historic Landmark. It was founded in 1871 and is “one of the earliest schools for African Americans in the state of Georgia.”
  • Lāna’i City, HI
    Besides being the smallest Hawaiian island, Lāna’i City is also notable for the presence of “an intact plantation town.”
  • Unity Temple, Oak Park, IL
    This Unitarian church designed by Frank Lloyd Wright and dedicated in 1909 “is the only surviving public structure from Wright’s prolific Prairie period.”
  • Ames Shovel Shops, Easton, MA
    The Ames Shovel Shops, a complex on eight acres, is composed of “15 granite and wood buildings dating from 1852 through 1928, [and] is the central core of what many consider a museum of 19th-century American development.”
  • Memorial Bridge, Portsmouth, NH & Kittery, ME
    ”For more than 85 years, Memorial Bridge, the first major ’vertical lift’ bridge in the eastern U.S., has been a sturdy and dramatic landmark, spanning the Piscataqua River and connecting the historic coastal towns of Portsmouth, New Hampshire, and Kittery, Maine.”
  • Mount Taylor, Grants, NM
    The only mountain on this year’s list, Mount Taylor “has been a pilgrimage site for as many as 30 Native American tribes, with special significance for the Acoma people.”
  • Human Services Center, Yankton, SD
    Previously the South Dakota Hospital for the Insane, the Human Services Center is Yankton is the oldest public institution in the state. “It was here in the 1890′s that Dr. Leonard Mead implemented his groundbreaking idea of creating an environment that would be therapeutically beneficial for patients instead of the sterile, fear-provoking asylums of the day.”
  • Cast-Iron Architecture of Galveston, TX
    Twelve blocks in Galveston “constitute one of the largest collections of historic commercial buildings in the country.”
  • The Manhattan Project’s Enola Gay Hangar, UT
    “Although the Enola Gay has been restored, the Wendover hangar where the plane was stored prior to its deployment is severely deteriorated, as are many other important sites associated with the Manhattan Project.”

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