2020 Preservation at Its Best: Community Effort
As Iowa’s only National Trust Historic Site, Brucemore is a significant tourist attraction in Iowa, greeting more than 1,000,000 visitors since 1981. The restoration is part of a multiyear, $4.5 million effort to preserve the 19th century Queen-Anne style mansion.
The project focused on the roof slate, window glass and wood, exterior trim, stone masonry, doors, light fixtures, and exterior brick walls, making improvements in accordance with the Secretary of the Interior’s standards, to achieve three main goals: to preserve a structure important to the history of Iowa; to reduce risk to thousands of regionally and nationally significant furnishings, documents and works of art housed within the structure; and to ensure continued opportunities to share the estate with the public.
The work was funded by broad community and state support. This included over 500 individual and corporate donors to Brucemore’s first capital campaign, Pride & Preservation, as well as city, county, and state funding. The state funding included grants from Enhance Iowa Community Attraction and Tourism through the Iowa Economic Development Authority and the Historic Resource Development Program through the Iowa Department of Cultural Affairs. Over 80% of funding spent on Phase II of the Mansion Envelope Project went to Iowa businesses.
Preservation Iowa’s two most visible programs are Iowa’s Most Endangered and Preservation at Its Best. These two programs work well together because being listed as Most Endangered often times leads to awareness, a preservation effort, and a high-quality, award winning project.
The full list of Preservation Iowa’s 2020 Preservation at its Best award winners includes:
- Winneshiek County Courthouse (Decorah)
- Simmons House (Ottumwa)
- Lemars Pictorial History (Lemars)
- Lauridsen Opera Center (Indianola)
- Jefferson Forge (Jefferson)
- Graceland Cemetery Chapel (Avoca)
- Coffee on the River (Lansing)
- Brucemore Mansion Phase 2 (Cedar Rapids)
- 711 High Street (Des Moines)
- Hotel Maytag Apartments (Newton)