Vice Chairman Dr. Kenneth Bailey welcomed everyone to the meeting held at the Radisson Hotel in Morgantown on 28 January 2005, and called for introductions by commission members and guests. The meeting was called to order at 9:35 a.m. Voting members present were Margaret Brennan, Dr. Gloria Gozdzik, Dr. Chuck Hulse, Dr. Charles Ledbetter, Joy Stalnaker, Kip Stowell, Noel Tenney, Marjorie Zirk, Dr. Bill Arnett, (ex officio) president, West Virginia Historical Association, and Michael Shock, (ex officio) president, West Virginia Historical Society. Voting members absent were Snookie Nutting and Dr. Joan Walker. Ex officio non-voting members present were Phyllis Baxter (arrived a little later on in meeting), president, Preservation Alliance of West Virginia, Troy O. Body, acting commissioner of the Division of Culture and History and State Historic Preservation Officer, Susan Pierce, director, Historic Preservation, Stan Bumgardner, acting Museums Section director, and Fredrick H. Armstrong, director, Archives and History, and secretary for the commission. Non-voting ex officio member Carl Smith, director of the West Virginia Geological and Economic Survey, was absent. Staff present were Alan Rowe and Erin Riebe, Historic Preservation section. Identified guests included Chad Proudfoot, David Taylor, Dr. Garret and Bonnie Long, Daril Stalnaker, and Michael Gioulis.
Vice Chairman Bailey asked if there were any additions or revisions to the minutes of the 8 October meeting, which had been sent out earlier. Ms. Brennan inquired as to status of Ms. Nutting as a member and being listed as absent in the minutes, and it was explained that members continued to serve until replaced by an appointment or by submitting a written resignation. In the absence of either of these, Ms. Nutting remains a member of the commission. Mr. Tenney noted on page 8, sixth line from the bottom, the correct spelling of Piles should be “Pyles”. Ms. Zirk moved to approve the minutes as distributed, with the correction on the spelling of Pyles, and Dr. Arnett seconded the motion. Motion passed.
Vice Chairman Bailey called on Ms. Pierce for the Historic Preservation report in the temporary absence of Mr. Body and Mr. Bumgardner. Ms. Pierce reported the office had filed the End of the Year (FY 2005) Report for the National Park Service in December. The FY2005 annual application had been drafted and they were waiting for NPS notification before submitting it. Educational and public activities during this period included several staff presenting lectures for a University of Charleston historic preservation class and assisting with the class project, a survey of Sophia in Raleigh County. Staff conducted tax credit workshops in Martinsburg, Woodsdale suburb of Wheeling, and Tygart Valley. In Marshall County they participated in a cooperative “Preservation and Partnership” program between the Grave Creek Museum and the Marshall County schools. They had also participated in several Archaeology Month activities, including her presentation at the Native American Lecture in November. A staff planning retreat with Hydie Friend as facilitator had been held in November. She reported that in December she and ChrisKnorr had participated in a planning retreat of statewide associations partners, hosted by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, as well as a planning retreat with Preservation Alliance of West Virginia. She and Mr. Body had participated in an October planning workshop for the Coal Heritage area. They had assisted the Joint Judiciary Committee in the development of revisions to the fire code legislation for bed and breakfasts, which was to be presented in the upcoming legislative session.
The Section 106 program generated approximately 472 letters during the past few months and staff attended various public meetings, including one by the Parkersburg Board of Zoning regarding demolitions and one in Randolph County relating to an infill proposal for the Tygart Valley area. An agreement had been negotiated with the West Virginia Infrastructure Council to facilitate their reviews and the office was exploring ways to improve its work with HUD on compliance issues. Corridor H work had required several archaeological site visits.
The National Register program work would be reflected in the four sites to be presented today. Staff was working with members of the Charleston downtown community to review and discuss interest in pursuing listing the downtown as a historic district. An effort about ten years ago had failed because of owner objections. She noted efforts to educate the people about the advantages of listing, the tax credit program, the development grant program, as well as participation in the certified local government program. Work was underway to update some district and survey files, and site visits included Ansted, Rowlesburg, Williamson, and Elkins. She announced that they had participated in several meetings on the Blair Mountain site regarding interest in nominating it and that it may well be presented at the May meeting. A public meeting had been held in December and another would be held in March.
Work was progressing with the Division of Highways on the T-21, Transportation and Enhancement grant for bridge surveys. In the tax credit program the paperwork for six Part 1 applications, eight Part 2 and five Part 3 had been submitted to the National Park Service. The “Save America’s Treasures” grant at Grave Creek was making progress with the bid for the replacement of the skylight accepted and the contract being negotiated. Construction drawings for the addition to the collections area were 95 percent complete and these were being reviewed and the final details worked on. At Weston State, Hospital work is progressing with Consulting URS on Phase 2, which is plans and specs for repairs to the roof, gutters and downspouts. Staff has also been working with the Museums Section, providing assistance on the Jenkins Plantation project.
In the grants program, the Development Grants were announced and applications are being sent out with a deadline of March 31. Later in today’s agenda, the Survey and Planning Grants will be considered. Several site visits have been conducted with regard to CLG grants, and Ravenswood has recently received this designation. The office has submitted a T-21 federal highway enhancement project application for a grant for assistance in developing a web site design for GIS database. The office currently has a contract with WVU to develop a web site, as well as to create a smart form for access to records. The National Register nominations are currently being scanned by temporary staff for placement on the site. She concluded her report, informing members that the January issue of Wonderful West Virginia has an article which makes reference to the wall hanging restoration project at Willow Wall in Old Fields, Hardy County (copies later distributed)
In response to a question from Dr. Bailey, she explained that bed and breakfast operators in historic homes had been cited by the Fire Marshal for failure to be in code compliance based on the rental units, occupancy, and sprinkler systems. Owners saw the requirements as onerous and intrusive and were seeking a variation to allow reliance on smoke detectors.
Mr. Stowell inquired as to any possible legislative changes which would alter the Snyder sponsored bill passed a couple of years ago. The growth pressure in Jefferson County challenged the local landmarks commission, especially in the absence of review support from the Historic Preservation Office. Ms. Pierce stated the office had no authority to review unless permit required, like DEP for water or potential archaeological site. The county’s use of its planning commission for reviewing sub-division plans negated the authority of the office to be involved. She noted that Preservation Alliance had discussed attempting to secure legislative support to reverse the Snyder legislation. With permission from the chair, Mike Gioulis stated that the legislation permitted Historic Preservation to be involved in comprehensive plan development, but Mr. Stowell stated this did not address the need for permit review for demolition, potentially effecting historic and archaeological sites. A discussion on legislation and comprehensive planning and zoning, and legislation effecting these and the involvement of the Historic Preservation office ensued. It was noted that the local political environment was the most important factor and that Jefferson County was challenged by the tremendous growth rate and its many historical sites.
Ms. Pierce informed members that efforts to arrange training for commission members at this meeting had not proven possible, but this would be done in conjunction with the May meeting in Logan the evening before.
Chairman Bailey thanked Ms. Pierce, welcomed Mr. Body to the meeting, and called upon him for the agency report.
Mr. Body informed members that Mr. Bumgardner would be giving the Museums Report, however, he noted the governor had put major projects on hold and this included the Phase 2 work on the Museum. Funds are available for this when this hold is lifted, but new, additional funds will be required to go forward with Phase 3. The division is looking at introducing some new legislation and cleaning up some technical legislation for the division, primarily with the Arts section, asking for legislation to create arts license plates with the revenue going to that fund, and another to include Historic Preservation. Another legislative interest is to require construction of new state buildings to use state art. The commission would be informed as these initiatives moved through the process. He concluded his report by informing members that the agency had been pushing very hard on the Museum project. The project faced major challenges when the most recent bids, projected by the planners to be 1.6 million came in nearly three times this figure, as was reported in the newspaper. He noted the project would be completed, however, it is currently straining not only financial resources, but morale and other projects the agency would like to do. To assist in moving the project to a successful conclusion once the temporary hold was lifted, he hoped to hire a museum planning specialist from Virginia, who had already been consulted and demonstrated the interest and talents needed.
Chairman Bailey called on Mr. Bumgardner for the Museums report. He distributed his report (copy attached to official minutes), noting two mistakes - (1) there is no attached chart as mentioned in the text and (2) there is a missing word on the last page in the last section. Members were given time to review the report. He stated he would give members a chance to read the report, which summarizes where they are with regard to the museum project and other sites.
Ms. Stalnaker asked if the commission was going to have the opportunity to discuss the report (Performance Audit) on the Museum project which was the subject of the Charleston Gazette article. Mr. Bumgardner stated that the report addressed the Museum and different parts of the agency. He added that perhaps some of his report would answer some of the questions. Ms. Stalnaker stated she had read the newspapers and the report. She requested an explanation for the statement on Page 5 of the report regarding the failure to inform the legislature of the additional costs for the project. Mr. Body stated he could not speak for the former commissioner, but the agency did schedule a meeting with the Committee on Finance and Education. He stated he was unable to explain the specifics for this statement. Ms. Stalnaker asked that this be checked into and then stated that while the commission might be remiss in not requesting information, it is difficult in that they are not in Charleston to read the press and must depend on the staff and reports. She stated she would personally like to see this changed so that members did not have to first learn of it through the press. She then asked about the finding on Page 13, which stated the agency was in partial compliance, as they were to ask a national organization for an assessment of the storage areas for museum, artifacts, and archival material. Mr. Stowell commented that he had told former Commissioner Nancy Herholdt that the NPS, with headquarters in Harpers Ferry, would be available to send staff to provide advice and assistance and to meet with the planners and designers involved in the project, if requested. He noted that he had volunteered himself but no one had asked, and then added that Chadbourne had good staff. Mr. Bumgardner agreed this was a great idea, and noted that there had been an assessment of the storage conditions of the Museum collection in 1993. It was ignored in the first audit and staff was not able to respond. This was responded to in this audit and noted that the recommendations of the assessment followed to the extent resources allowed. The environmental findings had been addressed in the HVAC project, and the leaks with the plaza deck project. The assessment had been used as a benchmark but the issue of accreditation, which the report also addressed, was another matter and required increased space and proper storage for the collections, for which there were no funds. A grant had been submitted to the National Endowment for the Humanities for a storage system that would provide proper care for the collection. Another grant request has been submitted to IMLS for digitization of the collection. He and Mr. Stowell discussed the missed opportunity for NPS assistance and the expertise which might have been, or might be available from, this source. Mr. Body agreed this was a lost opportunity, and noted that the failure to move the museum project to conclusion could be credited to lack of leadership, expertise and a serious underestimation of money required to carry out such a project. It now presented problems in requesting funds needed for the agency improvement package and other agency needs.
Ms. Stalnaker asked for an explanation on the escalators, which she stated she was unaware of until the newspaper article noted the expense. She inquired as to the procedure in securing such items as escalators and if the secretary did not have to approve such, since she is authority over the commissioner. Mr. Body responded that this was a fair question, which he could not answer, as the paperwork, which had Ms. Herholdt’s signature, preceded him.
Chairman Bailey recognized Chad Proudfoot, a guest and Vice Chair of the Capitol Building Commission, who informed members that group was not asked about the escalators either. He noted that the Capitol Building Commission, which has the final say on any physical changes on the complex, had not been asked about the escalators. Mr. Armstrong commented that these had been discussed during the earlier Chadbourne contract and found to be too expensive, as with several other site preparations, and at the expense of the overall museum interpretation. Ms. Stalnaker stated she hoped the commission could count on Mr. Body keeping it informed of such considerations and expenditures which fall under the commission’s legislative charge. Mr. Bumgardner commented that the architects and designers were in the business and it was in their interest to make money. The agency had needed someone with experience in this work to represent its interests for quality work at good value. Ms. Stalnaker stated that there had been some fund raising efforts under former commissioner Conlin and asked if it was not time for the public to get involved in raising money again. Mr. Body stated the Museum needs a leader and the project needs leadership, as it has been governed by a committee the past few years. He noted the governor had not asked him to stay on, but if he does, and he was interested, he would find the people to provide this. Dr. Hulse questioned going forward with Phase 2 if they were still studying and looking for ways to reduce the projected cost of Phase 3. Mr. Body replied that the design, which is fantastic, is not an issue. There is simply not enough money for the design. He stated his opinion is to finish two phases and then go back and ask for more. The design, once it is done, will be something to be proud of. He stated his opposition to scaling back the project. In reply to Dr. Hulse, he stated he did not know if they would get Phase 3 money and he did not know if he was going to get reappointed, but he does not want to spend the year without the support of the governor, whose support is needed to move the agency forward. Dr. Arnett commented that, while it may sound like an inappropriate comment, it seems the history of the Archives and History Commission and the appointment of the commissioner is political and they have had some people who unfortunately have not taken the job seriously and did not have to. He spoke favorably to Mr. Body’s position and inquired if the commission should let the governor know how they feel about the appointment.
In response to Mr. Stowell, it was explained that the interpretation was written to go with the design and that the omissions of the Chadbourne plan, which stopped in 1930, were now incorporated. The historians had been brought back into the process after the Chadbourne work was stopped and a seven-page story line developed. This was then given to the designers for the content for the 22,000 square feet. Most of the multimedia had been written and scripted and they were now working of the specifications to make them tight and specific so as to avoid cost overruns.
Ms. Pierce asked to make a few clarifications on some of the comments. She noted that previous commissioners had asked for increases and raises from the legislature, but possibly without the necessary explanation. She also noted that staff in Historic Preservation had worked for the project to the extent they could within federal guidelines. She concluded by stating that Mr. Body had requested the staffing needed for the project once completed, not just funding to complete the project.
Dr. Ledbetter noted there had been many comments on the need for the expertise to guide the project, but little on the hiring this expertise. Mr. Body explained that he had contact with someone in Virginia to provide this, but at this time he did not have signature authority to hire. In response to Dr. Bailey’s question as to no response to the findings on Page 33, Mr. Body stated he went to the legislature in early January and will go back early February. Mr. Bumgardner noted that responses had been made to an earlier draft which the auditors then incorporated into the report in such a way as to make them appear as part of their report.
Chairman Bailey concluded the discussion on the museum and called on Mr. Armstrong for the Archives and History report.
Mr. Armstrong noted that members should have received the October thru December monthly reports mailed in advance, which contained statistical information as well as some details about Archives and History services and programs. He commented on staff providing research and collection assistance on the Museum project, the Golden Horseshoe activities in collaboration with the Department of Education and requests for research and photographs dealing with governors’ inaugurations. The Archives Library rules approved by commission members at the previous meeting had been filed and were effective since 15 January 2005. Two additional microfilm cabinets had been purchased to address some of the storage needs and a replacement copier was leased for the library. Staff is looking into replacement of a few microfilm readers, as it is costing more to keep some in operation. Staff is working with the West Virginia Library Commission on an electronic catalog migration project for the collection, which, once a system is adopted, will change some of the electronic accesses to both printed materials, as well as collections material thru the state library system.
The project to use scene changes as a means to index and provide access to the moving images was initiated in this reporting period. It is a project of specific interest to a legislator whom we hope to interest in providing funds to keep it going. This collection, comprised of all the television footage from WSAZ, WTRF, WVVA, and WCHS, as well as a lot of other film footage, which is of tremendous interest, but access is limited without an index to stories, events and people.
Collections acquired during this period included about fifty cubic feet of the A. Spates Brady collection picked up in Elkins after the last meeting and some thirty boxes of W. W. Trent (former State Superintendent of Schools) Collection, 1933-1957, which he had taken to the Virginia Records Center where they were freezing them to eliminate bug infestation. As the Division of Highways had decided it did not want to transfer title to its right-of-way records, arrangements to return them were completed this month, freeing up space which was needed for recent acquisitions. Work with John Young’s widow to place his extensive collection of Wheeling area railroad photographic negatives, as per his will, began but this will be a slow project because much of it is undocumented and photographs of other areas of the United States need to be removed and directed elsewhere according to his wishes. Another collection taken in during the second week of January until the Sunday before Inaugural Day was a large quantity of Governor Wise’s papers. This collection of 250 or more boxes will require extensive processing to establish even minimal access.
Archives is also participating in the agency web site overhaul and is trying to make adjustments so that the information that has been on the web will still be as readily accessible as it was in the past. He informed members there will be a transition period with the web site and if they run into problems accessing information, they should let him know so it can be corrected or improved. He noted the addition of “this day in history” on the site, as part of the Archives and History centennial observance. Each day is featured with an event to which links are added to records and information also available on the site. The centennial will also be observed with the publication of a photo book of 150 photos. The plan is to have it available in March and to feature some lectures, maybe as many as four, during the year. The commissioner had generously set aside agency funds to support these activities, as well as a few souvenir items commemorating the year-long observance.
Work on Project Access to digitize vital records and make them available on the Internet continued. The agency had used funds to strengthen and re-vamp the web to host the records and handle anticipated increased interest. The electronic records were now coming in faster than the audit system could handle and some temporary help had been hired to assist. The press article on the project had resulted in some concern for posting these records, but most were questioning “when, not why,” they would be available. The plan is to start loading some in March and gradually continue until this contract is complete and then proceed with the next set of ten counties to image, extract and index.
The Records Management Preservation Board just completed its review and consideration of seventeen of eighteen grants submitted in the second round and all will receive at least partial funding, totaling approximately $330,000. Of the twenty-two active grants this year, fourteen are reporting progress, of which three have completed their project. Recently, the board made a major change in the land book retention policy which will allow counties to remove two of their three land books for each year. A series of records workshops are also being conducted for officeholder and staff at no charge.
The highway historic marker program continues to generate private sponsor interest. Work continues with the manufacturer on some markers scheduled for production, while work also continues with sponsors on getting the final wording approved. The commission would be asked to consider another new request at this meeting for the White House Farm historic site. The T-21 grant for $75,000, with Archives putting up twenty per cent from the marker book sales, and eighty per cent provided from highways, was completed and submitted the first week in January to the Division of Highways. They had reported back that everything was in order and sometime later this year we will be hearing back from them. The grant provided funds strictly for marker maintenance and refurbishing with no administrative costs involved.
He concluded his report by announcing the date of April 1 & 2 2005 for the annual all night at the Archives, Hoot Owl held in conjunction with Mining Your History Foundation. He noted that registrations are already coming in for that event. The other upcoming annual event is History Day, set for March 17, 2005. The History Hero nominations had been delivered today for sponsor review and consideration.
Chairman Bailey asked if there were any questions pertaining to Mr. Armstrong’s Archives report. Dr. Ledbetter inquired as to the status of the Mingo Oak marker mentioned in the November report and Mr. Armstrong explained that that particular marker disappeared and a report was received to that effect. However, it reappeared within a week’s time and he received information as to the location of the marker, which was the Town of Delbarton, in another county. Thus far, they have not been successful in convincing the mayor to allow its removal and he has been hesitant to request DOH to relocate it to its proper placement, as it may not now be on the state right-of-way. In response to Ms. Brennan, he stated they did not know if the town had moved it as a tourist attraction, but that it was incorrectly placed for this purpose. He then briefly explained to Dr. Ledbetter the interest of genealogists in the Hoot Owl night and its purpose to raise funds for the collection.
Chairman Bailey asked commissioners to change the agenda at this point, as a number of guests had arrived for the National Register presentations. There being no objections, Chairman Bailey called for the National Register nominations, stating following the presentations, they would return to the order of the agenda.
Mr. Rowe distributed the voting forms to members and introduced Dr. Barbara Rasmussen who used digital images to present the first nomination, the Ashland Coal Company Store and Gymnasium, Ashland, McDowell County, under Criterion A: Commerce and Social History and Criterion C: Architecture, with period of significance being 1907 - 54. She noted the store also meets the parameters included in a previous multiple property submission of the coal company stores of McDowell County. The store closed in 1971, Ashland Coal Company went out of business in the early 1980s, and the federal government closed the post office in 1991. The property was surveyed as part of the Coal Heritage Survey. Ms. Stalnaker questioned the absence of interior views and Dr. Rasmussen stated she did not have any with her. Mr. Rowe stated he might have some in his car and offered to get them. Ms. Stalnaker stated she could see them later, and restated the commission’s interest in having interior views of the properties presented. In reply to Dr. Hulse’s question on the reason the gym was moved, Dr. Rasmussen explained that it was in the way and flush with the river bank and very close to the road. She stated the property was still owned by Ashland and it might become a tax project. There being no further questions, Chairman Bailey asked if there was interest in approving the site. Dr. Arnett moved to approve the nomination and Dr. Ledbetter provided the second. Motion passed.
David Taylor presented the second nomination, Ronceverte Historic District, Greenbrier County, under Criterion C: Architecture, with period of significance being 1832 - 1954. He noted the nomination was done under a Certified Local Government Grant thru the Landmarks Commission in Ronceverte, which had conducted a couple of earlier cultural resource surveys. He noted the district encompasses the downtown and some adjacent railroad property, including a coaling tower and the C&O passenger depot, as well as one historic bridge and some adjacent areas to the north and south containing homes, churches, two early twentieth century school buildings, historic brick paved streets and an industrial warehouse area. There were two properties in the district recorded by the Historic America Building Survey in the 1930s and it had a total of 293 resources, of which 75 per cent are contributing. Following the presentation, Susan Pierce asked Mr. Taylor if he knew the source of the brick pavers, to which his response was that they were not marked. Ms. Stalnaker moved to approve the nomination and Ms. Zirk provided the second. Mr. Taylor confirmed Chairman Bailey’s suggestion that it was a timbering town originally. There being no further questions or comments, Chairman Bailey called for a vote on the motion. Motion passed.
Mr. Gioulis presented the third nomination, Bramwell Additions Historic District [Boundary increase], Mercer County, under Criterion A: Community planning and Development and Industry, Criterion B: Ethnic Heritage, and Criterion C: Architecture, with the period of significance being 1892-1948. He explained that this was a boundary increase to the existing addition to the Bramwell historic district. The original district once comprised the downtown and commercial core, the operators’ housing and mansions. The second was the Bramwell addition which included the workers’ houses and some of the outlying coal company towns that were later incorporated into Bramwell. This nomination, consisting of twelve acres and twenty-seven contributing and eleven non-contributing structures and one object, would amend the boundary of this latter Bramwell addition to include an area previously excluded because it required additional research and information. In reply to Mr. Stowell’s question about the Ellwood - Colonial Revival style house, Mr. Gioulis stated it was two stories plus the attic, which was original to the residence. He did not know if the Holly Woodson mentioned in the nomination was a relative to Carter G. Woodson in reply to Dr. Ledbetter’s question. Dr. Ledbetter moved to approve the nomination and Mr. Stowell provided the second. There being no further questions or comments, the vote was taken and the motion passed.
Before presenting the fourth and final nomination, the Old District Parsonage, Romney, Hampshire County, under Criterion C for Architecture, with period of significance being 1872, Ms. Riebe introduced the owners, Dr. Garrett and Bonnie Long, who wrote the nomination themselves. The Old District Parsonage was constructed around 1872 by the Methodist Episcopal Church for use by the presiding elder. The Longs purchased it in 1965 to be used as their private residence. The Longs wrote the nomination in conjunction with the county’s 250th anniversary. Chairman Bailey asked if there was interest in nominating the house and Ms. Zirk moved to approve it. The second was provided by Michael Shock. Motion passed.
As this concluded the National Register nominations, Chairman Bailey asked members to turn their voting sheets in to the secretary and declared a recess for lunch at 11:55 a.m.
The meeting reconvened at 1:20 p.m. taking up under Old Business the Weston District nomination questions from the previous meeting. Ms. Riebe handed out the revised nomination and addressed the changes in the first paragraph, section 8 , as well as the first paragraph, section 7, for the brick sidewalks. She informed members that the revised nomination was sent to the National Park Service in December.
Chairman Bailey reminded members that History Day will be Thursday, March 17, 2005 and asked if anyone had anything to inform members in that regard. Ms. Stalnaker stated she seemed to be ad hoc chair and that she had the nominations for History Heroes. She noted that Preservation Alliance handled mailing the nomination and display forms and that the sponsors would be meeting to consider the hero nominations soon. The time for the program was on hold in hopes of getting it on the governor’s schedule. Arrangements were in place for a resolution and recognition of the history heroes from the legislative gallery.
Chairman Bailey called for the report on highway historic markers and Ms. Brennan, chair of the Marker Committee, spoke to the work Mr. Armstrong and Mr. Geiger did in preparing and submitting the T-21 grant for maintenance and refurbishing to DOH and thanked them. Mr. Armstrong informed members that the request was for a $75,000 project toward the markers, with an average of $400 per marker. It was submitted as a two-year project, as they did not know if all of them would have to go to the same manufacturer to be refurbished and of it would be able to handle this volume. As this would not address all the markers, it would require a continuation. Once approval is received, they would look at the ten districts and try to identify the most needy markers and spread the monies to cover a portion in each district. The announcement would not be before August and might not be available before 2006.
Chairman Bailey, noting that there was a request to approve a marker on the agenda, asked to take it up at this time. There being no objection, Mr. Armstrong noted the information on the White House Farm marker request, a National Register site in Jefferson County, had been mailed in advance. He briefly reviewed the history of the site dating back to the 1740s. Mr. Stowell mentioned the barn roof collapse and Ms. Pierce mentioned a development grant for the property. Mr. Armstrong noted it was a private sponsor request and the final inscription would have to be worked out with the manufacturer and sponsor. Mr. Tenney commented on the term, Scots-Irish instead of Scotch Irish and questioned the replacement of the historically used reference for the current politically correct phrase. Mr. Armstrong referred to his notes and informed members that the sponsor had used the phrase, “Scots-Irish”, not “Scotch Irish.” Chairman Bailey asked if the commission approved the language, to which Mr. Armstrong responded it had not previously. He stated if approved he would work with the sponsor and the manufacturer to refine the wording and do the best they could to reflect the discussion on the term. He welcomed members’ suggestions and their offer of assistance. Mr. Stowell moved to approve the White House Farm marker request and Dr. Gozdzik provided the second. Dr. Arnett asked about the dates cited and Mr. Armstrong noted there were some discrepancies as to when it was purchased and when it was built. Following discussion on the dates and comments on wording the inscription, Chairman Bailey called for a vote on the motion. Motion passed.
Chairman Bailey called on Mr. Armstrong to report on the Archives administrative rules. He informed members the process had been completed with the Secretary of State and approved in December with an effective date of 15 January and posted on the web site in advance.
Chairman Bailey then made appointments for the Nominating Committee which was to prepare a slate of officers to present at the May meeting. He appointed himself, Ms. Stalnaker, and Dr. Ledbetter.
Chairman Bailey called upon Susan Pierce for her report on the Annual Work Program Subgrant Scholarship program. She distributed a copy of the proposed language, (copy attached to official minutes), noting that “Scholar” needs to be changed to “Scholarship.” She stated she was not quite sure as to what was wanted as to specific submission. Mr. Armstrong stated there was discussion at the previous meeting questioning the form of documentation, or what was to be required to support attendance. Ms. Pierce stated if the commission wanted to be more specific, it was not too late as it had not been submitted to NPS. Ms. Stalnaker stated she would like to require submission of registration and Ms. Baxter stated an invoice. Ms. Pierce drafted and read a statement, “ The recipient will submit evidence of registration and comments which will reflect attendance at sessions and how attendance impacted state and local issues. Mr. Armstrong suggested that those submitting add something that could be published in Details as to the educational benefits of attending, which may help generate interest among others. Ms. Pierce added that there will be a photograph of everyone attending. As there was nothing further to report, Chairman Bailey thanked Ms. Pierce for getting back with the commission and then called for her report on Survey and Planning Grants.
Ms. Pierce distributed copies of an article pertaining to Willow Wall (copy attached to official minutes), which represents a development grant which members supported. She noted there were two grant pools: the certified local government and non-certified local grants, which included a statement that funding may not be available. Requests totaling over $156,000 were received from certified local government and landmark commissions. Staff reviewed both sets of grants and decided to assist as much of the CLG applications as they could to reward their service and to serve as an incentive to get others to become operating CLGs. The office is required to set aside ten per cent of its annual funding from the NPS, which is about $55,600, for the CLG program, which as mentioned earlier had submitted $156,000 worth of requests. They were recommending fully funding the survey and planning grant applications, with one exception, the Berkeley County National Register project, which was reduced by $1,000 because it contained two buildings that were considered ineligible by staff. Funding is not recommended for the Morgantown Historic Landmark Commission Metropolitan Theater project to purchase an air conditioning unit ($82,500), which is really a development grant.
With respect to the non-certified local government applications, Mr. Rowe, based on numerous visits and meetings with interested locals, does not believe the area has the expertise and ability to meet and sustain the requirements of a CLG. Therefore, they are recommending that the National Register project be the only one funded out of that group. She concluded by informing members they are giving out the required ten per cent and an additional $20,000 to the CLGs and the one non-CLG. In reply to Ms. Brennan, she stated they thought the signs requested by Ronceverte were related to a walking tour, although the type of sign is not indicated. In response to Dr. Ledbetter she explained that the consultant fee is the same per unit and the Jefferson County number is higher because it is a metro area. It was, in a way, a repeat grant, as the CLG is surveying the entire county by magisterial districts. In reply to Mr. Tenney, she explained that consultants had to meet professional qualifications and cost factors could be affected by in-kind match. Chairman Bailey called for a motion on the two grant packages as presented. Ms. Stalnaker moved to approve the grants as recommended by the staff with the understanding that staff could move funds from a project unable to use them to the next applicant approved for funding in order of ability to use and priority. Ms. Zirk provided the second. Motion passed.
Chairman Bailey called for the Certified Preservation District Program Sub-committee report. Ms. Baxter informed members that she and Mr. Knorr had put together recommendations based upon criteria from similar projects, but there was not much to report. The committee had not formally met and was not prepared to present recommendations. Ms. Stalnaker spoke to the banners and signs for a recognition program, similar to the national program. Ms. Baxter added they could make the state criteria a little less restrictive. Ms. Stalnaker suggested they discuss it more and place it on the agenda for the 6 May meeting. Chairman Bailey added that it appeared there may be insufficient interest for them to take it on as a responsibility. There would have to be more interest to start this up, continue it, and remember to do it on an annual basis. After additional discussion on how much interest the commission had in developing and implementing such a program, committee members stated they would take the copies of their report back, study it more and address it on the agenda at the May meeting. Mr. Tenney noted that as a commission they should do what they can to promote public awareness of historic preservation at the local level.
Continuing under New Business, Susan Pierce spoke to the approval at the last meeting of the commission to included Historic Preservation awards during the History Day program, informing them that seven applications had been received. She asked if it would be okay, since Ms. Stalnaker and Ms. Baxter are going to be meeting on the history heroes, if they would review the awards submitted and represent the commission. Ms. Stalnaker stated she would attempt to get all the sponsors involved in the review of the history heroes if she could. In reply to Ms. Brennan, Ms. Pierce stated she did not know beyond Details about the announcement for the award and did not have a list of where they came from.
Chairman Bailey asked if there was any additional business. Ms. Brennen informed members of Dr. Dana Brooke’s upcoming program on the integration of West Virginia high school sports at West Virginia University on 24 February and his challenge in locating documentation and sources. Dr. Ledbetter mentioned his difficulties doing a personal project on his African American hometown in Oklahoma. Several other members shared ideas and experiences in researching African American history. He noted they do have some things at West Virginia State University. Mr. Stowell informed members that in 2006 a NAACP meeting will be held in Harpers Ferry to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of the Niagra Movement meeting there. This was followed by a brief discussion on commission appointments and its membership representation. Some spoke to expanding the representation on the commission to include the West Virginia Association of Museums, if legislation was introduced for this section of the Code.
Chairman Bailey then inquired as to future meeting dates for the commission. The spring meeting will be held on Friday, 6 May 2005 at Logan. Ms. Pierce stated they will assume that there will be a training session and it was decided to schedule it for 6:00 p.m. Several members stated they might not be able to attend because of classes. A brief discussion ensued on membership and quorum. Mr. Armstrong stated that currently eight were required for a quorum to conduct business. It was decided that Mr. Bumgardner would be handling arrangements for the meeting at Museum in the Park.
Chairman Bailey asked about the date of 7 October for the fall meeting in Ronceverte. Everyone seemed to be in agreement with this date. After discussion of several sites for the winter meeting, it was decided to leave it open to see if Dr. Conte’s invitation to return to The Greenbrier was suitable at that time. Other sites mentioned were Hacker’s Creek and Stonewall Jackson Lake. It was agreed the winter meeting date would be Friday, 3 February 2006, with 10 February as the back up.
Mr. Armstrong informed members if they brought their Ethics Commission Form with them he could notarize them. There being nothing further to be addressed, on motion by Dr. Hulse, Chairman Bailey declared the meeting adjourned at 3:40 p.m.
Fredrick H. Armstrong
Archives and History Commission