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Columbia County Historical Society receives Preserve New York grant

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October 8, 2019 11:38 am

KINDERHOOK — The Columbia County Historical Society (CCHS) is one of this year’s Preserve New York (PNY) grantees.

The society’s grant of $10,000 will allow the CCHS to work with Walter Wheeler of Hartgen Archaeological Associates to complete a Historic Structure Report (HSR) of the Schoolhouse. The HSR project will assess the current condition of the building, make recommendations for repair and restoration and serve as a guiding document for continued interpretive use and future preservation. The schoolhouse is not currently listed on the State and National Registers of Historic Places, and the Historical Society hopes that the research provided through the HSR process will create a strong case for a future nomination.

The Preservation League of NYS and their program partners at the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) are thrilled to help fund this important work.

The Ichabod Crane Schoolhouse was initially constructed in 1850 at the intersection of Route 9H and Fisher Road as the District #6 Schoolhouse for the town of Kinderhook. Although the structure was moved just 200 yards from its original location in 1974, it remains an excellent and intact example of a rural, one-room schoolhouse with a gable roof, clapboard siding, and a single pent-roofed entrance. The interior consists of a large classroom with two adjacent cloakrooms — one for boys, and one for girls. The building was never modified to have heat or hot water and still retains its original 1929 wood burning stove, wood flooring, chalkboards, and double-hung sash windows. Several condition issues are present that must be addressed in the near future: the condition of the metal roof and the stability of the structure, as the building still rests on the steel girders that were used to move it in the 1970s.

The 2019 PNY grant cycle was the most competitive in the program’s 26-year history. An independent jury met in June to review more than 70 applications. After two days of deliberations, $262,498 was awarded to 31 projects across 25 counties.

Preserve New York is a regrant partnership between the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) and the Preservation League of NYS. PNY enables the Preservation League to support projects in all of New York’s 62 counties.

With the announcement of the 2019 awards, support provided by PNY since its launch totals more than $2.8 million to 438 projects statewide.

2019 PNY Grant Recipients:

Bronx County: Historic Districts Council - $14,000; Cayuga County: Seward House Museum - $10,000; Chautauqua County: Jamestown Renaissance Corporation - $4,208; Clinton County: Town of Schuyler Falls - $10,000; Columbia County: Philmont Beautification, Inc. - $10,000 Columbia County Historical Society - $10,000; Delaware County: West Kortright Centre - $4,764; Dutchess County: Village of Rhinebeck - $7,875; Red Hook Public Library - $2,600; Erie County: Preservation Buffalo Niagara - $20,000; Essex County: The Depot Theatre, Inc. - $4,712; Greene County: Zadock Pratt Museum, Inc. - $6,400 Greene County Council on the Arts - $13,191; Lewis County: Lewis County Historical Society - $10,000; Madison County: Smithfield Community Association - $13,017; Montgomery County: Greater Mohawk Valley Land Bank - $5,200; Historic Amsterdam League - $14,560; Nassau County: North Shore Land Alliance - $12,000; New York County: Ascendant Neighborhood Development Corporation - $10,000; Rensselaer County: Village of Castleton-on-Hudson - $3,000; Rockland County: John Green Preservation Coalition - $8,000; Saratoga County: Town of Corinth - $10,000; Schoharie County: Jefferson Historical Society - $6,883; County of Schoharie - $3,968; Suffolk County: Preservation Long Island - $7,900; Yaphank Historical Society - $9,200; Tioga County: Village of Owego - $8,000; Warren County: Richards Library - $4,000; Wayne County: Baptist Rural Cemetery Association of Sodus Center - $1,700; Westchester County: Village of Larchmont - $10,000; Yates County: Village of Penn Yan - $7,320.

“We are thrilled the Preservation League of New York has endorsed our commitment to the Ichabod Crane Schoolhouse with this grant.” said CCHS Executive Director, Lori Yarotsky, “The iconic literary character is an important part of Columbia County heritage and we want to preserve its namesake schoolhouse--including its architecture--for future generations and visitors. Thanks again to the Preservation League for their recognition and support.”

“Thanks to the League’s record of making effective preservation grants through Preserve New York and TAG, our program partner, the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA), has increased regrant funding significantly over the past several years,” said Erin Tobin, Vice President for Policy and Preservation and the Preservation League, “At the same time, in response to growing demand, the League has successfully lined up additional support to leverage NYSCA funding and League resources. NYSCA and the Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation make these grants possible through their program partnership and financial support.”

The Preserve New York grant program is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA) with the support of Governor Andrew M. Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. The Robert David Lion Gardiner Foundation has provided additional support for projects in Nassau, Suffolk and Bronx Counties.