Student Aide Positions Available

The Center for Historic Preservation is looking for student aides for the 2017-2018 academic year. Currently three positions are available. Department of Historic Preservation Aide: This student aide position will assist Mrs. Coates in the day to day operation of the department. Duties will include but are not limited to maintaining the equipment library, creating and maintaining displays and bulletin boards, updates to the department job bank and website, creation of the department newsletter, and providing general assistance to faculty members as needed. Center for Historic Preservation Aide: This student aide will work directly with the Center for Historic Preservation Director, Associate Professor Spencer, to facilitate the Center’s mission. Duties will include but are not limited to promotion of the department and center on social media sites, updates to the centers web page, promotion and organization of lectures and other sponsored events, and assistance with … [Read more...]

Spring 2017 Newsletter

Hello, Everyone! The University of Mary Washington Historic Preservation Department is pleased to announce that our Spring 2017 Newsletter has arrived!  If you’d like to sign up to receive a digital copy, please follow this link: spring2017newsletter_final   Melissa Parent UMW Historic Preservation Department Student Aide 2016-2017 … [Read more...]

NPS Research Opportunities

The National Park service has published a booklet on research opportunities in national parks in the National Capital Region. If you're interested in academic class projects, thesis or dissertation research, volunteer work, or unpaid internships you can download the booklet here: research_opportunites_for_history_students_2017_digital some of these would be great for those still needing to fulfill your Experiential Learning Credit or if you just want to boost your resume before graduation!   … [Read more...]

Beyond the Blog


Lots of talk in academia about the use of technology and computers but unfortunately it seems that much of it revolves around blogs or other social media platforms. However, that doesn't always cut it in the field of historic preservation. Documentation is a key component in the field  and one that is well suited to take advantage of technological changes and while we have been progressive in some respects we are now adding some additional digital documentation tool sets to our toolbox. While not new to other preservation programs Agisoft Photoscan software, SketchFAB (online 3-D viewer, free), and Unity (animation software, free) all offer some pretty cool possibilities and come with a small price tag (in some cases free). Below is a model made in Agisoft Photoscan and then placed within SketchFAB (an online viewer). Brick on Sketchfab … [Read more...]

The 2016 Fall Newsletter Is Now Available!

Fall 2016 Newsletter

Hello, Everyone! The University of Mary Washington Historic Preservation Department is pleased to announce that our Fall 2016 Newsletter has arrived!  If you’d like to sign up to receive a digital copy, please follow this link: Enjoy!    fall2016newsletter_nov30_final … [Read more...]

“University of Mary Washington Alumni go to Great Heights to Restore US Capitol Building”


Three University of Mary Washington’s, Department of Historic Preservation alumni, Jen Mason, Justine Bello, and Caitlin Smith spent the better part of the last three years helping with the incredible task of conserving the US Capitol building.  Employed by Conservation Solutions Inc., the three Mary Washington alums meticulously worked to clean the delicate stonework using lasers and applying chemical consolidates when necessary. During the initial phase this past summer, the alumni had the opportunity for some hands-on experience while preserving the exterior stone on the east and north elevations of the Senate wing of the building. The company’s role allowed them to work in both the initial preparation and final detailing phases to restore. They worked within time and environment/weather constraints to utilize specialized methodology. The group focused on twenty-two columns on the east elevation and ten columns on the north elevation. There were six levels of scaffolding … [Read more...]

Sometimes its the Little Things

Fig. 2 A piece of chair rail tucked between the wall and the window casing. This appears to correspond to a piece found on a Federal period mantle located in the attic.

During the fall my HISP 461 Building Forensics class descends on a local historic building in hopes of providing the owner or organization with additional information. While we dig through local archives its often the observations concerning the physical fabric of the building which offer the most additional insight about the buildings development over time. This fall the class is investigating the Masons Lodge at the corner of Princess Anne Street and Hanover Street in Fredericksburg. Fortunately for us, the original building specifications survive in the Lodge's records and date the building to c. 1816. The specifications also allow us to compare the current physical fabric with what is noted in 1816 helping to discern what is original (period 1) and what has been added or changed over time. For instance the original specifications note "...the large room to be finished in a plain stile [style] with chair board of only plain plank 4 inches wide with a bead on each side..." With a … [Read more...]

Call for Submissions for the 2017 Book Prize

The University of Mary Washington Center for Historic Preservation is happy to announce that submissions for the 2017 Historic Preservation Book Prize are now being accepted. Please follow the link for more information. … [Read more...]

Spring 2016 Newsletter

Thank you Laura Gilchrist, Prof. Turdean, Prof. Sanford, and Julie Coates for all your work on this semesters newsletter. Spring 2016   … [Read more...]

Year in Review, 2016


  As the spring 2016 semester comes to a close, the UMW Center for Historic Preservation is excited to congratulate our newest historic preservation graduates. We are also happy to celebrate the end of a successful academic year and a busy year for the Center. For those wondering what the Center for Historic Preservation does to help facilitate our mission of preservation education and community outreach, below are some of the 2015-2016 highlights: • Sponsored and facilitated 5 lectures ranging from laser scanning to economics in historic preservation. • Extensive involvement in four external grants including a historic structures inventory and integrity assessment for the Blue Ridge Parkway ($13,670), a moisture ingress investigation and treatment plan for the Second Bank of the United States ($73,995), a Duff McDuff Green Jr. grant for architectural drawing conservation at UMW ($6,250), and recently a grant secured by Dr. Lauren McMillan from the Council of Virginia … [Read more...]