Privatized preservation

During the reading of Historic Preservation, I found myself thinking about the ideal of Private efforts to preserve historical sites. Although I prefer the idea that our federal government would not allow our local history to be demolished, I believe that only the local people who actually know and care about it are likely to save a larger number of sites. That being said, I find that there are some companies and groups that are taking this preservation into their own hands. I recently ran into an article that proves this.In the article, getimagephp.jpg__800x600_q85_crop, Smithsonian Magazine shows that even businesses such as McDonald’s are taking some sense of historical responsibility. This idea fills me with a sense of relief. The “George Washington slept here” technique as the book calls it, is one of the few ways that we can actually work to save our history on a local level.(42) I wish that there were better avenues for this but unfortunately all too many people just really could not care less.

The other thing that really intrigued me was the talk about Seattle’s Pike Place Market. It did so because I found myself in awe of the idea that a historical area or landmark could become so popular that “its character would change into that of a boutique center and lose its original character as a somewhat scruffy everyday market run by local farmers and small entrepreneurs.” (23) Not only the fact that a historical site could be so popular but also the idea that someone actually recognized saving it for what it originally was took me back. I wonder how many times that this has actually happened throughout history. Do we truly remember historical sites as they were or simply as what we wanted them to be? Does history tell us more about the people who lived it or those of us that choose to look back at it?JS121409112_Mauro-Consilvio-E-mail-maoconsi40gmailcom-large_trans_NvBQzQNjv4Bqek9vKm18v_rkIPH9w2GMNpPHkRvugymKLtqq96r_VP8

One thought on “Privatized preservation”

  1. Um, that’s the coolest McDonalds ever. Talk about preserving the historical context of a space. And I love that McDonalds actually sponsored the archaeological dig, instead of fighting it.

    You ask an interesting question that I hadn’t considered. I have to imagine that the element of presentism can be found in nearly any reconstruction or preservation of a historical place. It’s a whole other layer to really determining historical value, especially when you’re looking at how much money you want to spend on “preserving” a place.

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