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Virginia Department of Historic Resources

The Virginia Department of Historic Resources is the State Historic Preservation Office.
Our mission is to foster, encourage, and support the stewardship of Virginia's significant historic architectural, archaeological, and cultural resources.

Historic Virginia


10 Places Added to the Virginia Landmarks Register, December 2016
 
One of the oldest surviving frontier-era buildings on Virginia’s southern Piedmont, as well as 18th-century plantation houses in the Tidewater region, and three distinct modern 20th-century buildings in the Richmond area are among the ten places added to the Virginia Landmarks Register (VLR) by the Department of Historic Resources in December 2016.
See a slideshow of the places.
 
(See more slideshows here.)
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Recent News and Announcements

DHR has issued its mandated biennial report on the Stewardship and Status of State-Owned Properties 2017-2019. The 2017 report “attempts to balance the duty and benefits regarding stewardship with the challenging realities facing agencies which own historic real estate,” writes DHR Director Julie V. Langan. For the first time, the report addresses threats to state-owned historic resources resulting from sea levels that are projected to continue rising. The report offers recommendations for stewardship of state-owned historic properties for the 2017-2019 biennium.
DHR is pleased to announce the availability of grants through the Virginia Battlefield Preservation Fund for the preservation of Revolutionary War, War of 1812, and Civil War battlefields in Virginia either through fee simple land purchases or protective easement purchases. Battlefield preservation organizations that qualify are urged to apply. Applications are due July 6, 2017. Please contact David Edwards for any questions about the grant application form and grant criteria (grants manual). Also feel free to share the announcement with any other preservation organizations that may be eligible for such funds. Battlefield Grant Application   Grant Criteria and Manual

Historic Surry Disaster Mitigation Plan: Draft plan awaits public comments.
The Historic Surry Disaster Mitigation Plan provides the Town of Surry and its residents guidelines on preparing for, and recovering from a natural or man-made disaster, specifically with regards to the treatment of historic properties. The attractive, 30-page plan, created in 2016 and now available for public comment, is the result of a grant administered by DHR from the the NPS's Historic Preservation Fund–Hurricane Sandy Disaster Relief Assistance Grant.

FYI, see these helpful checklists (from the full plan) for preparation and recovery from disasters.  

Questions or comments? Please contact Blake McDonald at DHR.  
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18 New Historical Markers Approved: The horrific story of a young Congolese man brought to the United States for exhibition at a World’s Fair in the early 20th century, the heroic feats during World War II of the first conscientious objector to receive a Medal of Honor, and the early forays of the U.S. Army in developing the foundations of today’s GPS (Global Positioning System) during the 1960s are among the many topics covered by new historical markers approved in March for installation. Read a press release and the full marker texts.

16 Historic Sites Added to the Virginia Landmarks Register (VLR): A mid-20th century church in Williamsburg associated with the oldest continuously active African American congregation in the United States, a post-World War II planned village in Fairfax County, and two Confederate Civil War memorials are among the 16 sites added to the VLR in March during a quarterly meeting of DHR's two boards. For more information, see this press release, which includes a summary of the significance of each property.
CLG (Certified Local Government) 2017-2018 Grant Applications Now Available!  For CLG communities this is a wonderful opportunity to update surveys, revamp design guidelines, expand or update National Register listings or send architectural board members to training. This year CLGs will be competing for $89,541 to be divided among 35 CLGs in Virginia. The deadline for the applications is May 31, 2017 at 4:00 p.m. All final products will be due by June 15, 2018. Here are links to application and other necessary documents: (1) Announcement (with instructions); (2) Request for Applications; (3) Attachments A through F, I, J; (4) Attachments H, K, L through R, U
In celebration of the 50th anniversary of DHR as well as the National Historic Preservation Act and Virginia Open-Space Land Act, our agency published this special Commemorative Issue of Notes on Virginia, No.54, now available online as a 74-page PDF. DHR released a limited print-run edition of the magazine at Preservation Virginia’s annual conference in October, convened on the 50th anniversary of the signing of the NHPA on October 16, 1966. (The agency’s Historic Resources Fund covered the printing costs of the magazine.) We still have hard copies of the print edition available. To order, please send your request to the attention of Jennifer Pullen, DHR, 2801 Kensington Avenue, Richmond, VA 23221. Please enclose a check for $3 to cover postage of the magazine. See past issues of Notes on Virginia also available online. 

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Now Available: Virginia Indians at Werowocomoco (NPS Handbook): An established Native American settlement as early as 1200 CE, Werowocomoco—located in Gloucester County, along the York River—was a secular and sacred seat of power of the Algonquian people in present-day Virginia, whom the English would call the “Powhatan.” The site was rediscovered in 2003. Only about 1 percent of the 58-acre site has been investigated; however, based on archaeological research conducted so far, it appears to be an unprecedented archaeological find for the eastern coastal region of the nation, and its significance to Virginia Indians today and our shared history is without parallel. Generously illustrated and informed by recent scholarship, this latest addition to the National Park Service Handbook series is an engaging and concise history of the site, its rediscovery, and what recent archaeology tells us about Werowocomoco. Order the book from the University of Virginia Press or online retailers such as Amazon. Priced at $12.95, consisting of 148 pages with more than 100 color images, photographs, and maps, this book is intended for a general reader interested in Native American and Virginia history.

Natural Disaster Recovery Advisory