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Grants Help Preserve Historic Structures

Tuesday, April 26, 2016

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Two federal agencies that share a commitment to maritime preservation and education have announced the award of nearly $2.6 million in matching funds to help preserve the sites and objects—from ships and lighthouses to museums and history centers—that contribute to America’s maritime history.

The National Park Service and the U.S. Maritime Administration (MARAD) jointly revealed the winners of the next round of Maritime Heritage Program Grants Monday (April 25) while on board the USS Constellation in Baltimore's Inner Harbor.

USS Constitution
© iStock.com / SOMATUSCANI

Nearly $2.6 million in grants have been awarded to help preserve the sites and objects that contribute to America’s maritime history, including the first major restoration of the USS Constitution in more than 20 years.

A total 34 projects in 19 states have been identified to receive $2,580,197.37 in disbursements.

“As a nation with vast coastlines and interior waterways, our maritime heritage is an integral part of the story of our economic growth and the defense of our nation,” said NPS director Jonathan B. Jarvis. 

“These grants will enable our state historic preservation partners to connect local communities to their maritime heritage from sea to shining sea.”

Eligibility and Funding

In accordance with the National Maritime Heritage Act of 1994, funding is provided by MARAD through the recycling of vessels from the its National Defense Reserve Fleet.

The grant program supports a broad range of maritime education and preservation projects, without the use of tax dollars, while ensuring that the vessels are dismantled in an environmentally sound manner.

Grants are available to state, tribal, and local governments, as well as private non-profit organizations for education and preservation projects. 

Liberty Ship John W Brown
By MKelly1990 / CC BY-SA 3.0 via Wikimedia Commons

The Liberty Ship John W. Brown, one of three grant recipients in Maryland, has been awarded the $178,670 needed to refinish the steel superstructure of the vessel in order to stabilize and preserve the ship from ongoing rust.

Projects eligible for education funding, such as school curriculum, interpretive programs and web pages, can receive between $15,000 and $50,000.

Preservation projects, which can include the rehabilitation or restoration of ships and other maritime resource, are eligible to receive between $50,000 and $200,000.

Featured Projects

The projects supported by this year’s Maritime Heritage Program grants range from an educational program providing students studying state history an overnight stay aboard historic tall ship Spirit of Dana Point to a plan to rehabilitate four offshore lighthouses to enhance public education and tourism related to Michigan's unique maritime history.

“These iconic maritime treasures must be preserved for future generations—ships, lighthouses, and the vast array of strategic maritime vessels that served and protected our nation at critical times in our history,” said Maritime Administrator Paul “Chip” Jaenichen.

Cape May Lighthouse
© iStock.com / Karl Kehm

The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts and Humanities will be getting $50,000 to repaint the exterior of New Jersey's Cape May Lighthouse in a historically authentic color scheme.

“The Maritime Administration is committed to preserving these assets and artifacts from our past, so that future generations can fully appreciate, and be inspired by our nation’s maritime legacy,” he added.

Other key projects for the coming year include:

  • Steam Ferryboat Eureka Structural Survey (California): The San Francisco Maritime National Park Association is receiving $52,900 for a project that will include a comprehensive structural survey of the Steam Ferryboat Eureka, a registered National Historic Landmark vessel.
  • Preservation of the Superstructure of Liberty Ship John W. Brown (Maryland): Project Liberty Ship has been awarded $178,670 needed to refinish the steel superstructure of the vessel in order to stabilize and preserve the ship from ongoing rust. This preservation project will prevent further deterioration of the ship, keep the ship in safe operating condition, and allow the safe meeting of training and educational/outreach obligations to partners, visitors and members.
  • Renewing “Old Ironsides” (Massachussetts): The USS Constitution Museum has been granted $50,000 for ongoing restoration through its “Renewing Old Ironsides” project. On May 18, 2015, USS Constitution entered Dry Dock 1 for her first major restoration in more than 20 years. This proactive effort will chronicle the work underway, capture the stories of the artisans responsible, document the skills involved, and interpret the restoration’s historic relevance.
  • Exterior Painting at the Cape May Lighthouse (New Jersey): The Mid-Atlantic Center for the Arts and Humanities will receive $50,000 to repaint the exterior of the lighthouse in its historically authentic color scheme based on the plans and specifications already prepared.
  • The Stepping Stones Lighthouse: First Steps to Rehabilitation (New York): The Town of North Hempstead will receive $165,000 to make critical repairs to halt further deterioration of the lighthouse, ready the structure for full rehabilitation, and launch an educational campaign. Built in Second Empire-style brick in 1877, the historic Stepping Stones Lighthouse was modernized in 1944.
  • Restoration of Boat Deck and Hull, 1902 Tug Jupiter (Pennsylvania): The Philadelphia Ship Preservation Guild has been granted $100,088 to be used to replace the boat deck and provide dry-docking of the 113 year-old continuously operating vessel. In order for this history to be better accessible, these two major projects will help the Guild meet U.S. Coast Guard requirements for a Dockside Attraction Vessel Certificate of Inspection.

A complete list of this year’s recipients can be found here.

These winners were selected from the 2015 Maritime Heritage Grants application period.  Maritime Heritage Grants will be offered in 2016, but the open application period has not yet been determined.

   

Tagged categories: Corrosion protection; Funding; Grants; Historic Structures; Maritime Administration; National Park Service; North America; Preservation; Program/Project Management; Rehabilitation/Repair; Restoration; Rust

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