Non-profit organizations – Heritage Foundation helps preserve monuments in Stockade and throughout Schenectady County

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The Schenectady Heritage Foundation was established in 1979 to help preserve historic monuments in the Stockade area.

Since then, the Foundation has grown not only to preserve and maintain the historic monuments of the Palisade, but also throughout Schenectady County.

“When it was founded in 1979, the goal was to focus strictly on historic preservation in the historic Stockade district,” said Gloria Kishton, senior director of the Schenectady Heritage Foundation. “The Foundation is an offshoot of the Stockade Association. It was founded by a group of residents of Stockade decades ago.

“At one point, after the association had existed for a while, they realized that it was necessary to focus on historical preservation because the association also does a lot of other things, like social events. , talks about public gardening and that sort of thing. They wanted to focus on historic preservation.

The Schenectady Heritage Foundation website states that the foundation is guided by the Home Secretary’s standards for handling historic properties. The National Park Service administers the US Department of the Interior.

“There was, and still is, a great need in the Palisade and our other historic areas of Schenectady, particularly in the Palisade,” Kishton said. “They are constantly under stress from different forces, like development, zoning, etc. This is really the mission of the foundation and the reason why they thought it was necessary.”

Following: Special section – Non-profit organizations

Each year, the Schenectady Heritage Foundation honors individuals who help make meaningful improvements to the structures they own. This year’s winners were Haley Whalen, owner of Arthur’s Market at 35 N. Ferry St .; Diane Runkel, owner of the Kranick family home at 12 N. College St .; and Jac Solghan, owner of 16 N. Church St.

There was no ceremony last year because of the coronavirus pandemic.

Kishton discussed the importance of preserving buildings like these.

“We think it’s very important,” Kishton said. “I would go back to the federal government, which established these historic preservation programs… this is how the modern preservation movement began with all levels of government.

“Our standards come from the federal government, go through the New York State government, which has a department known as SHPO, which is the State Historic Preservation Office, and then down to the local level. We have local neighborhoods that have been identified and registered, as well as iconic buildings that can be self-sufficient. “

Kishton cited the Nott Memorial at Union College as a free-standing building that is a historical landmark and must be preserved.

“What if Union College or someone else wanted to buy the Nott Memorial and tear it down?” Kishton said. “You might think that’s an extreme example, but things like that happened. In Schenectady, the Proctors Theater was actually threatened with demolition decades ago. A group of people organized and saved the Proctors from demolition. I think no one has to remind anyone how important theater is as an economic generator in our community.

In addition, it is a wonderful place for the arts.

“We as a society have decided that these places are important to preserve. They offer a link with our past and our history, but also they offer a real basis for economic development and heritage tourism. These are some of the reasons we think it’s important. They are really essential in creating a special sense of belonging for people. These things are not only seen in the Palisade, but in other historic neighborhoods where property values ​​now remain higher than non-historic neighborhoods.

People can donate to the Schenectady Heritage Foundation by going to www.schenectadyheritage.org/donate/.

Following: Special section – Non-profit organizations

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Categories: Life and arts, Non-profit organizations 2021


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