Historical Commission 2019 Gloucester Preservation Awards | Ceremony May 19th at Cape Ann Museum

Cape Ann museum exterior_20181219_ c ryan.jpg
Gloucester Historical Commission annual awards ceremony takes place at Cape Ann Museum

The 2019 Gloucester Preservation Awards
Press Release from the Gloucester Historical Commission

The Gloucester Historical Commission invites the public to attend the annual 2019 Preservation Awards ceremony on Sunday, May 19, 2 to 4 pm at the Cape Ann Museum, 27 Pleasant St. in Gloucester. The event features a slide show of winning projects and comments by recipients.

May is National Historic Preservation Month, and each year the Historical Commission recognizes outstanding cultural heritage preservation, restoration, and education projects.

This year’s award recipients are:

Bryan Melanson
Restoration & Rehabilitation, for his cooperation and responsiveness as a developer to historic preservation on the Back Shore.

Ross Burton & Lanesville Community CenterRestoration & Rehabilitation, for their reconstruction of Virginia Lee Burton’s writing cottage.

Lillian Olmsted Stewardship, for her research and vigilance as a citizen seeking to preserve the historic character of her neighborhood.

Magnolia Historical SocietyAdaptive Reuse, for the rehabilitation of the Blynman School as their headquarters and a local history museum.

Bernadette Fendrock & Alan D’AndreaRestoration & Rehabilitation, for restoration of an architecturally significant house at 24 Beach Rd.

1623 Studios Education & Outreach, for their programming on the history and historic preservation of Gloucester and Cape Ann.

Manship Artists Residency + StudiosAdaptive Reuse, for their rehabilitation of the Paul Manship estate as working space for artists and sculptors.

James Ryan Preserving Gloucester History, for his annotated hand-drawn maps of Cape Ann’s granite quarries and neighborhoods.

Richard & Kathy Clark Stewardship, for their faithful volunteer efforts on the restoration of the Civil War-era Clark Cemetery.

Annisquam Yacht Club Restoration and Rehabilitation, for their extensive rehabilitation of a historically significant recreational facility.

Meetinghouse Foundation
Education and Outreach, for its cultural programs and collaborative preservation of a historic church building.

Appreciation Award for Individual Lifetime Achievement– To be announced.

Certificates are awarded based on the following criteria:
Preserved neighborhood history through research, writing, or art

  • Preserved a property that is historically significant in age, style, or use.
  • Restored using traditional materials or methods.
  • Preserved historical integrity or appearance.
  • Protected from present threat or future harm.
  • Completed project within the past two years.
  • Accomplished by individual, family, group, or company, or through community advocacy or fundraising

Award categories include the following.

  • Archaeology
  • Adaptive reuse
  • Stewardship
  • Education and outreach
  • Landscape preservation
  • Restoration and rehabilitation
  • Local preservationist
  • Individual lifetime achievement
  • Documentation of Gloucester’s history

Celebrating the Virginia Lee Burton Writing Cottage restoration and resiting at the Lanesville Community Center, #GloucesterMa

ROSS BURTON _Virginia Lee Burton Writing Cottage opens_Lanesville Community Center_Gloucester MA_20181021_© c ryan
Congratulations to Ross “Sandy” Burton, Chris Wagner, Russell Hobbs, Cheryl Mazer, Juidth Oleson, Christine Drohan, Carol Kelly, and many many other volunteers who rescued and repurposed Virginia Lee Burton artist studio into a most fitting new chapter

Come on inside the Virginia Lee Burton Writing Cottage which was once the acclaimed artist’s former studio of her own. Virginia Lee Burton’s personal studio was rescued and nestled into the Lanesville Community Center property. The center’s clubhouse and grounds, established in 1954, seem to be the ideal spot for a summer rec program, even more so now. As one enters the cottage through the custom built door, there’s a brand new window straight ahead where the stove and chimney – and asbestos– had been. Virginia Lee Burton needed a wood stove. Today’s visitors won’t. New materials and insulation make the cottage cozy and warm.

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vs “The Barn” (1948) Folly Cove Designers large public space 

 

Chris Wagner president of community center and project manager_ ROSS Burton_ Virginia Lee Burton Writing Cottage opens_Lanesville Community Center_Gloucester MA_20181021_© c ryan
Chris Wagner & Ross Burton (with microphone)

At the celebration presentation on October 21, 2018, Chris Wagner, President of the Lanesville Community Center and project manager,  recounted some history. Virginia Lee Burton purchased her studio from the Building Center in 1963. It was a pre fab home that she repurposed for her needs. He explained that the volunteers leveraged outreach. The Building Center responded with “anything you need,” and was so supportive of the cottage regeneration that they offered the volunteers a $5000 credit towards building materials. It takes an inspiring and talented village. Other area businesses stepped up: Timberline donated shingles; Argentino handled plastering; Closed Cell Structures out of Reading handled the spray foam so the cottage was winterized; Carpenter & MacNeille designed and commissioned door and windows custom built by Chris Roe from Bayview; architectural drawings from Dore and Whittier; KML Electric; plants and flowers from Generous Gardeners; and cut sunflowers for the reception from Shaws. How inspiring to learn that Camilla MacFadyen, artist and textile extraordinaire, had a hand in this studio-raising. Character, warmth, and charm were added to the new exterior wood work. Volunteers salvaged what they could of the studio and rebuilt a gem. Work is still underway. When Burton exited her sanctuary studio, she faced the ocean. Now it’s an ocean of love. Plans for future community programs and events (see below) are underway and volunteers welcome.

 

 

Support for the cottage renewal came from residents of Gloucester via CPA funding and donations, various city staff departments (e.g. conservation and community development), and a slew of committed volunteers. Like Russell Hobbs! Here’s the modest presentation listing some key volunteers:

 

The poignant celebration was held inside the Lanesville Community Center and concluded with an apt recitation from a Little House passage read by Christine Drohan.

Continue reading “Celebrating the Virginia Lee Burton Writing Cottage restoration and resiting at the Lanesville Community Center, #GloucesterMa”