Heritage Newsletter

December 2014

Monthly news update from the Office of History and Archaeology
State of Alaska, Department of Natural Resources

          Federal legislation and funding for historic preservation programs
          Grants available for 150th anniversary of Alaska Purchase projects
          Alaska Historical Commission meeting
          Alaska Association for Historic Preservation
          National Park Service
          Public project alerts
          Heritage subscription information
          Preservation calendar

Federal funding of historic preservation programs

The President’s budget proposal for FY 15 (October 1, 2014-September 30, 2015) for Historic Preservation Fund programs included $46.9 million for state programs, $9.0 million for tribal programs, and $500,000 for grants for projects that address underserved communities; for a total of $56.4 million. The amount recommended for Heritage Areas, funded under the Recreation and Preservation Account, was $9.0 million. The President added an Opportunity, Growth and Security Initiative with $6 million for grants to state and tribal historic preservation offices to digitize legacy data.

The House of Representatives Appropriations Committee’s FY 15 bill for the Department of Interior, Environment and Related Agencies approved the administration’s recommended funding for the HPF programs. An amendment increased funding for Heritage Areas to $18.2 million. Just before recessing in August, Rep. Matthew Salman (R-AZ) introduced H.R. 5371 that would prohibit the use of federal funds and the provision for technical assistance for the Heritage Partnership Program and National Heritage Areas. Another bill, H.R. 445, has been introduced calling for uniform national standards and funding parameters for National Heritage Areas.

The Senate Interior Appropriations subcommittee draft FY 15 budget proposed level funding for state and tribal historic preservation offices, $500,000 to continue the underrepresented grant program, and $10 million for a competitive rehabilitation grant program. For National Heritage Areas the Senate recommended $20.3 million.

The Senate and House have continuing resolutions to fund most federal programs at their current levels until December 11, 2014.

In 2015 Alaska Senator Lisa Murkowksi will be chair of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee and chair of the subcommittee on Interior Appropriations. In those positions she will be a key decision maker on historic preservation issues and budgets. For the past two years, as ranking member on the Interior appropriations subcommittee, Murkowski has signed-off on draft bills that increase spending for preservation, conservation and recreation programs.

The House of Representatives approved a Defense Authorization bill last spring that would allow the head of an agency managing federal property to object for reasons of national security to a property’s nomination to the National Register of Historic Places or to the National Historic Landmark program. The bill also calls for the National Park Service to establish an expedited process for federal agencies to de-list historic properties for reasons of national security. The historic preservation community is advocating to ensure the provision is not in the Senate’s Defense Authorization bill and to have the House provision removed from the final bill by the conference committee.

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee reviewed and passed a MAP-21 Reauthorization Act (S.2322) to provide long-term funding for transportation programs. Section 1303 of the act weakens Section 4(f) reviews. Section 4(f) mandates that federal transportation agencies take extra measures to avoid destroying historic and archaeological sites. Preservation groups are contacting senators and expressing objection to Section 1303.

Grants available for 150th anniversary of Alaska Purchase projects

The Alaska Historical Commission has $125,000 available for matching grants to plan for the 150th anniversary of the Alaska Purchase in 2017. The grants are for projects that will contribute to understanding the history and significance of the event. Projects are encouraged for historic research and publications, restoration of significant historic properties, and heritage tourism development and information services. A grant request may not exceed $15,000 and must be matched. Projects are to be done between April 1, 2015 and September 30, 2016. Applications must be postmarked, e-mailed, or delivered by 4:30 p.m., Monday, February 23, 2015. Additional information and the application are available at dnr.state.ak.us/parks/oha/index.htm, or by contacting Jo Antonson, 907.269.8714 / jo.antonson@alaska.gov or Jean Ayers, 907.269.8694 / jean.ayers@alaska.gov.

Alaska Historical Commission meeting

The Alaska Historical Commission met November 13-14 in Juneau. Commission members reviewed geographic name proposals and approved Cora Lake for an unnamed lake in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough near Talkeetna, and Tlaxsatanjín for a peak on Heintzleman Ridge near Juneau. They discussed policies and procedures for indigenous place names including spelling, and will be continuing that conversation. Also, state land managers are going to be asked to look at maps for an unnamed mountain range that could be designated the Statehood Range with unnamed peaks that could be named after leaders in the Alaska statehood movement. In other action, the commission members recommended funds for preservation projects to the Municipality of Anchorage, City and Borough of Juneau, City of Sitka, and Matanuska-Susitna Borough. They found a property in Juneau, the Rudy-Kodzoff House, eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. The commission members discussed planning for the 150th anniversary of the Alaska Purchase and heard a report on plans for a statue of William H. Seward for Juneau. For more information about the commission, contact Jo Antonson, 907.269.8714 / jo.antonson@alaska.gov.

Alaska Association for Historic Preservation

The Alaska Association for Historic Preservation recognized James (Jim) Renkert and James (Thad) Poulson at their annual meeting held November 8 in Anchorage. Jim led the Friends of Nike Site Summit and oversaw and participated in the restoration work on several buildings at the Cold War Nike Hercules missile site near Anchorage. Thad has promoted the value of historic architecture in Sitka for thirty years through the purchase, restoration, and reuse of several buildings in the community. Congratulations to both!.

The Oscar Anderson House in Anchorage, a program managed by AAHP, will be open for its annual Swedish holiday celebrations the first two weekends in December. From 12-4 on the Saturdays and Sundays, there will be guided tours of the house which is seasonally decorated in the style of a Swedish family in the 1920s in Anchorage, followed by refreshments and family activities. This is a fundraising event for the house; admission is $20/adults, $10/children ages 3-12.

National Park Service

The deadline is January 16, 2015 (electronic)/January 2, 2015 (mailed) to apply for a 2015 American Battlefield Protection Program preservation grant (www.nps.gov/abpp/index.htm). The grants can be used for archaeology, cultural landscape inventories, GIS mapping, National Register nominations, and preservation plans. For more information contact Kristen McMaster, 202.354.2037 / Kristen_McMaster@nps.gov.

Another NPS deadline is December 23, 2014 to apply to cosponsor with the Cultural Resources Diversity Internship Program an intern for summer 2015. The costs are shared 50/50 and the project needs to be well defined and introduce a student to the range of historic preservation and cultural resources work. For more information about the program and an application contact Paloma Bolasny, 202.354.2174 / paloma_bolasny@nps.gov.


Alaska Department of Natural Resources / Donlin Gold Natural Gas Pipeline Project

Public meetings on right-of-way lease application: January 21, 2015, Skwentna; or by January 28, 2015 in writing to http://dnr.alaska.gov/commis/pco , email spco.records@alaska.gov , or mail 411 West 4th Ave., Suite 2, Anchorage, AK 99501-2343
Contact: 907.269.6859 phone / 907.269.6880 fax / spco.records@alaska.gov

Alaska Department of Transportation & Public Facilities / West Susitna Surface Access Reconnaissance Study

Project information: http://dot.alaska.gov/roadstoresources/westsusitna/index.shtml

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission / Alaska Energy Authority, Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Project

Project information: http://www.susitna-watanahydro.org/

General Services Administration / Old Federal Building, Anchorage, Landscaping Project

Public meeting: September 18, 2014, 4-6 p.m. Comments / contact: B. Story Swett, 400 15th St SW, 10PCE, Auburn, WA 98001 / story.swett@gsa.gov

U.S. Forest Service / Chugach National Forest Plan

Plan revision: fs.usda.gov/chugach / Land and Resource Management
Comments: chugachplanrevision@fs.fed.us

U.S. Forest Service / Tongass National Forest Sustainable Cabin Management Project

Environmental Assessment: http://go.usa.gov/WQEk
Contact: Victoria Houser, 907.826.1614 / vhouser@fs.fed.us

Heritage Subscription Information

Heritage is produced by the Office of History and Archaeology, Division of Parks and Outdoor Recreation, Alaska Department of Natural Resources.  Please send your comments, suggestions, and information via e-mail to jo.antonson@alaska.gov, mail to 550 West 7th Ave., Suite 1310, Anchorage, Alaska 99501-3565, or telephone 907.276.8721.

All issues are posted to our web site at dnr.alaska.gov/parks/oha and distributed to subscribers by e-mail.  A paper copy can be sent to individuals and organizations that specifically request it.

To be added to the subscription list, please send an e-mail to oha@alaska.net with “Heritage, subscribe” in the subject line.

If you do not wish to continue to receive Heritage, please send an e-mail to oha@alaska.net with “Heritage, unsubscribe” in the subject line.

Preservation Calendar


December 3-7 - American Anthropological Association: 113th annual meeting, Washington, DC (www.aaanet.org/meetingws/index.cfm)



January 16 - American Battlefield Protection Program, www.nps.gov/abpp/index.htm, grant deadline (Kristen McMaster 202.354.2037 / Kristen_McMaster@nps.gov)


February 23 - Alaska Historical Commission, 150th anniversary of Alaska Purchase grant application deadline (Jo Antonson, 907.269.8714 / jo.antonson@alaska.gov)


March 2-4 - National Historic Preservation Advocacy Week, Washington, DC (http://www.preservationaction.org/)

March 2-4 - National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers advocacy day and annual meeting, Washington, DC (Elizabeth Hebron, 202.624.5465 / hebron@ncshpo.org)

March 4-7 - Alaska Anthropological Association annual meeting, Anchorage (aaaconference@uaa.alaska.edu)

March 19 - Alaska Historical Commission meeting, Anchorage (Jo Antonson, 907.269.8714 / jo.antonson@alaska.gov)

March 24-28 - Society for Applied Anthropology: Continuity and Change, Pittsburgh, PA (www.sfaa.net/annualmeeting)

March 25-29 - American Association of Physical Anthropologists, St. Louis, MO (www.physanth.org)


April 13-16 - Mid-Century Modern Structures' Materials and Preservation 2015 Symposium, St. Louis, MO (Mary F. Striegel, 318.356.7444 ex 224 / mary_striegel@nps.gov )

April 15-19 - Society of American Archaeology, San Francisco, CA (www.saa.org)

April 23-25 - National Council for Preservation Education: Learning from the Reservation; Using the Traditional Cultural Place Perspective for Better Decision Making in a Diverse Cultural Landscape conference, Dover, DE (Robin Krawitz, 302.857.7139 / rkrawitz@desu.edu)

April 28-May 2 - Council of Geographic Names Authorities annual meeting, Anchorage (Wayne Furr, twfurr@cogna50usa.org)

April 28-29 - National Preservation Institute: Landscape Preservation: An Introduction, Sitka (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)

April 30 - National Preservation Institute: Landscape Preservation: Advanced Tools for Managing Change, Sitka (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)


May 12-13 - National Preservation Institute: The Recent Past: Identification and Evaluation of Mid-20th Century Resources, Anchorage (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)

May 14 - National Preservation Institute: Preservation Planning and Policy Development for Historic Roads, Anchorage (Jere Gibber, 703.765.0100 / info@npi.org)


September 10-12 - Association of Tribal Archives, Libraries, & Museums, 2015 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums, Washington, DC (ATALM, www.atalm.org)

September 16-20 - American Association for State and Local History, annual meeting: The Power of Possibility, Louisville, KY (Bob Beatty, 635.320.3203 / beatty@aaslh.org)

September 30 - October 3 - Alaska Historical Society / Museums Alaska annual meetings, Cordova (www.alaskahistoricalsociety.org)



March 16 - National Council on Public History annual meeting: On the Edge of 2016: Commemorating the Past and Shaping the Future of Federal Preservation Activities, Baltimore, MD (Barbara Little, barbara_little@nps.gov or http://ncph.org/cms/conferences/working-groups/)


June - National Alliance of Preservation Commissions Forum, Mobile, AL (NAPC, 706.369.5881 / napc@uga.edu)