Historic structures survey to begin - BlueStone Press
October 20, 2020

Historic structures survey to begin

Surveyors may be walking the roads near you and, perhaps, up your driveway


The Marbletown Historic Preservation Commission, together with the Town of Marbletown, was awarded $7,500 in grant money to survey 18th and 19th Century structures. The town has added $5,000, according to a letter going out to residents about the project.

"We are excited that after working toward this for five years our third submission was finally awarded,” said Timothy Hunt, HPC survey project director in an email.

The survey will begin in November and end in April, according to project coordinator, Susan Sprachman.

So, what should residents living in these older homes expect?

The project is called a “windshield survey” given it doesn’t require much property access, the letter says, and most work will be conducted from the street. In some cases, however, surveyors may want to take a closer look.

The folks conducting the survey, Woodstock’s Larson Fisher Associates, will have town-issued identification badges, Sprachman said in an email.

"We are really hoping those with properties off the road, or down a driveway will be generous enough to allow surveyors to capture the outside of the structure so we can have a fully-completed inventory," Hunt said.

Data being collected will include information on construction materials, doors and windows, roofing, number of stories, and outbuildings, and will not include interior details, according to Hunt and Sprachman.

In terms of scope, Marbletown has 73 structures built in the 1700s and more than 400 from the 18th and 19th centuries combined, the letter said.

The National Register of Historic Places already includes several historic districts in Marbletown. Listings include the Stone Ridge Main Street Historic District (added in 1988), Kripplebush Historic District (added in 1994), Rest Plaus Historic District (added in 1995), and High Falls Historic District (added in 1998), according to www.nationalregisterofhistoricplaces.com.

“The purpose of the survey is to document our rich history,” said Sprachman, “which is critical for preserving the rural character and small-town atmosphere of Marbletown in the face of pressure to develop open spaces and the expansion of business, and residential buildings.”

Though this isn’t the first historic survey done by the HPC, Sprachman said she hopes it will be more complete.

“The previous survey, done in 1990, contains only half of the structures in Marbletown built through 1899. This survey will contain over 400,” Sprachman’s email said.

“The new survey will be more extensive and record pictures of historic properties and information about each of them,” including approximate dates of construction, the letter said.

Nor is it the first time Larson Fisher has worked in this area. A 2010 Town of Rochester Historic Preservation Commission project used Larson Fisher, according to www.larsonfisher.com.

Ultimately, survey information will be available to the public.

“The survey information will go into a database that was created by the state specifically for this purpose,” Sprachman.

Known as the Cultural Resource Information System, the database is available at www.parks.ny.gov/shpo/online-tools.

“When the survey is completed in Oct. 2019, the HPC will hold a series of meetings to present the results to the community,” the letter said, “and seek additional funding to design a web-based tool for the community to add stories and narrative that are connected to historic properties.”

For more information about Larson Fisher, see www.larsonfisher.com. For questions about this project, contact HPC@marbletown.net. To see what is already available on the CRIS, see www.parks.ny.gov/shpo/online-tools.


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