St. Augustine projects are award winners at Florida Trust for Historic Preservation’s annual conference
When the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation held its 39th annual conference May 18-20 in St. Petersburg, the City of St. Augustine was well represented and recognized.
The city received two awards from the Trust’s Annual Statewide Preservation Awards Program. The awards were presented during the conference’s closing night’s awards ceremony.
St. Augustine: America's Enduring Colony, an archeological exhibit on permanent display at the St. Augustine and St. Johns County Visitor Information Center (VIC) garnered a Meritorious Achievement recognition award in the Archaeology category.
The city also received an Honorable Mention Award in the Preservation Education/Media category for its Heritage Marker Program launched in the spring of 2016 which included the installation of bronze markers on 32 sites dating from the city’s colonial period.
Opened in December of last year, St. Augustine: America's Enduring Colony, is a unique opportunity to share with the public the valuable and diverse history of the city as an archaeological resource. Much of the information in this exhibit was obtained through the city’s 30-year municipal archaeological program. The exhibit’s 4,800 square feet provides the estimated half-million visitors who pass through the city’s VIC each year access to otherwise inaccessible information which was once below the surface of the Nation’s Oldest City.
While various historical signage is scattered throughout St. Augustine, the city’s Heritage Marker Program is distinct in that only select Colonial Period buildings individually listed in the National Register were included and each marker carries a “quick reference” (QR) code image that allows the visitor to use a smart device to connect to the building’s image file of the Florida Master Site File. The addition of this instant digital access for accurate and comprehensive information enhances visitors’ experience of St. Augustine’s authentic history as told through its structures.
Attending the conference on behalf of the city were Jenny Wolfe, Historic Preservation Officer; Erin Minnigan, Historic Preservation and Community Development Planner; City Manager John Regan; Mayor Nancy Shaver; and City Commissioners Nancy Sikes-Kline and Roxanne Horvath. Wolfe is a member of the Florida Trust for Historic Preservation’s Board of Trustees, and both she and Minnigan presented educational programs during the conference.
Other projects in St. Johns County that received recognition at the conference were:
- Outstanding Achievement in the Restoration/Rehabilitation Category for work on the former Hotel Ponce de Leon.
- Honorable Mention in the Preservation Education / Media Category for Hotel Ponce de Leon—The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of Flagler’s Gilded Age Palace, by Dr. Leslee Keys, Flagler College’s Director of Historic Preservation and Special Initiatives.
University of Florida:
- Meritorious Achievement in the Restoration/Rehabilitation Category for the Government House Rehabilitation project.
Florida Public Archaeology Network
- Meritorious Achievement Award in the Preservation Education/Media Category for Tidally United Summit Video Series.