2020 Preservation at Its Best: Special Project
The Le Mars Historic Preservation Commission used a variety of approaches to enhance awareness of local history in the years leading up to the city’s 150th anniversary in 2019. The focus was the publication of a hard cover pictorial history of Le Mars containing over 1800 images and related narratives. The HPC reached out to the community by directly soliciting materials and conducting a seminar series designed to enhance community participation. The book proved extremely popular; the sale of 1,000 expensive books ($99 each) in a community of 10,000 is a testament to that. The HPC’s research greatly enriched the historic content of the Sesquicentennial Celebration and resulted in the creation of several activities that will continue into the future.
The 680-page book was entirely self-funded and supported from sales of the book.
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)