New place in history Nomination: The Governor's Consulting Committee has recommended New Windsor for the National Register of Historic Places.

February 06, 1997|By Mary Gail Hare | Mary Gail Hare,SUN STAFF

A place on the National Register of Historic Places awaits New Windsor.

Carroll's smallest town -- population about 825 -- will join many of its county neighbors on the register, including Union Bridge, Linwood, Sykesville, Taneytown, Uniontown, Westminster and most recently, Lineboro.

The Governor's Consulting Committee nominated New Windsor "unanimously and enthusiastically" at a hearing Tuesday in Crownsville and will forward its recommendations to the National Park Service for a final decision.

"With the park service, it is only a matter of review," said Kenneth Short, the county historic preservation planner. "The nomination will be official within a few months."

Buildings at least 50 years old and considered valuable to U.S. history are eligible for the register. Short found more than half of New Windsor's structures fit register criteria.

The nomination may help the town secure grant money to refurbish its historic buildings. Federal and state tax credits for renovation work also come with the nomination.

"The tax credits can be a real tool as far as preservation goes," said Barbara Duree, a town resident who attended the Crownsville hearing. "Maybe that can help, especially when a landlord wants to convert a home into apartments."

Short used a state grant to prepare the application, which the six-member committee reviewed and discussed Tuesday.

"Clearly this town has been an object of tender loving care," said committee member Richard Longstreth.

But, when Short proposed the nomination in the fall, several residents complained that his research was incomplete. The Town Council asked that a hearing originally scheduled in November be postponed until this month.

"The planner had not consulted local residents or the Town Council, all people with institutional knowledge," said Mayor Jack A. Gullo Jr. "Once they shared that information, I think he grasped the importance and made sure all our needs were met."

The three-month delay gave the town time "to dissect and look closely at all the details and to give the nomination an adequate hearing," Gullo said. "The application now reflects the will of citizens. At this point, we consider it a good thing for New Windsor."

Before voting, the governor's committee reviewed maps and copious notes on town buildings. Members watched a presentation of about 60 slides detailing two centuries of architecture.

"New Windsor is a typical Piedmont-area town, formed at the end of the 18th century," said Peter Kurtze, administrator of Maryland Historic Trust. "A rich agricultural landscape surrounds it and runs as far as the eye can see."

The slides featured many stately residences built by farmers 100 years ago as retirement homes; a once-thriving creamery that served surrounding dairy farms; and what remains of a mill operation along Little Pipe Creek. The pictures showed an 1861 date stone on one home and several examples of intricate porch woodcraft that has survived more than 100 years.

The committee took note of the number of preserved carriage houses, one that has an iron forge. The application cited Dielman Inn, which welcomed travelers to the town in the late 18th century; the former Blue Ridge College buildings, which are now the Brethren Service Center; and a few 1920s-style bungalows.

Yellow Turtle Inn, once a resort for vacationers from Baltimore, also interested the committee. Its newest owner is converting the Springfield Avenue house into a bed and breakfast inn.

Edward C. Papenfuse, a member of the Governor's Consulting Committee, said the nomination "was done with loving care. We can learn from it."

Committee member Robert M. Vogel offered a final suggestion. He wanted aerial photos of New Windsor and its environs added to the application.

"Aerial views would really pinpoint the context of this town," Vogel said.

Pub Date: 2/06/97

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