The most endangered places in America include a gas station, church and cemetery
For the last 36 years, the National Trust for Historic Preservation asks the public to nominate places in danger of being torn down. They then narrowed that list down to 11 sites and now work to raise awareness of the historical significance of these places to help preserve them.
Sites on this year’s list include a gas station, a church and a cemetery. To learn more about the historical sites and their preservation efforts, host Deepa Fernandes talks to Katherine Malone-France, chief preservation officer with the National Trust for Historic Preservation.
America’s 11 most endangered historic places
- Osterman Gas Station, Peach Springs, Arizona
This site is not just a gas station; it’s been a hub for the Hualapai Tribal community for almost a century.
Osterman Gas Station, Peach Springs, Arizona. (Richard Knott)
- Little Santo Domingo, Miami, Florida
Little Santo Domingo is the cultural heaty of Allapattah. It’s been threatened by overdevelopment, cultural erasure and displacement.
Allapattah Collaborative CDC
- Pierce Chapel African Cemetery, Midland, Georgia
Established in 1828, this site is one of the oldest burial grounds for Africans enslaved at plantations in Harris County, Georgia. The two acres of land are estimated to contain up to 500 burials.
Hamilton Hood Foundation
- Century and Consumers Buildings, Chicago, Illinois
These two early iconic skyscrapers have been vacant since 2005 and face the possibility of demolition.
- West Banks of St. John the Baptist Parish, Louisiana
This 11-mile-long corridor is an intact cultural landscape including historic villages such as Lucy, Edgard and Wallace. A company has applied to put the largest grain elevator in the world directly within this site.
Brian M. Davis/Louisiana Trust for Historic Preservation
- Holy Aid and Comfort Spirituality Church, New Orleans, Louisiana
Also called the Perseverance Benevolent and Mutual Aid Society Hall, this site was one of the first places jazz was heard and was an essential safe place for the Black benevolent society. Hurricane Ida collapsed the back half of the building, and other parts are at risk of falling down too.
National Trust for Historical Preservation
- L.V. Hull Home and Studio, Kosciusko, Mississippi
Artist L.V. Hull once lived and worked at this site. After her death in 2008, her artwork was moved, but the house suffers neglect, vandalism and weather exposure.
L.V. Hull Home and Studio, Kosciusko, Mississippi. (Yaphet Smith)
- Henry Ossawa Tanner House, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
This house was the birthplace of renowned painter Henry Ossawa Tanner and many of his also-esteemed family members. The house is severely deteriorated and at risk of collapsing.
Henry Ossawa Tanner House, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. (Justin Spivey/WJE Associates)
- Philadelphia Chinatown, Pennsylvania
One of the oldest remaining active Chinatowns in the U.S., the neighborhood is at risk for development such as a planned 18,500-seat arena that would abut the area.
- Charleston’s Historic Neighborhoods, South Carolina
Union Pier, a 65-acre waterfront site, has been used for maritime business since the early 18th century. A development has been proposed that would block views and negatively impact climate resilience.
- Seattle Chinatown-International District, Washington
This area is one of the oldest Asian American neighborhoods on the West Coast. An expansion project of Sound Transit, Seattle metro area’s transit agency, could impact the community’s access to public transportation and disrupt cultural preservation.
This article was originally published on WBUR.org.
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