For Immediate Release
Tuesday, May 19, 2015
Contact: Meredith Beatrice
Florida Department of State Recognizes Historic Preservation Month
In recognition of National Historic Preservation Month in May, the Florida Department of State announces activities to raise awareness of historic preservation in Florida by highlighting a few National Historic Landmarks and places of historical importance located in the state.
“Florida has a rich and diverse history. Many towns and cities throughout the state boast places of historical importance which are also heritage tourism sites,” said Secretary of State Ken Detzner. “Preservation of these special places – our non-renewable resources – is vital to maintain the legacy of Florida as a desirable place to live, work and play.”
National Historic Preservation Month is a campaign led by the National Trust for Historic Preservation each year in May. The Florida Department of State’s Division of Historical Resources is using this platform as an opportunity to showcase ways in which the division works year-round to protect and promote Florida’s historic places. This year the division is focusing on National Historic Landmarks and other places of significance listed on the National Register of Historic Places, a national program that is administered at the state level by the Division of Historical Resources.
Organizations throughout the state are also participating in Historic Preservation Month by staging activities that raise awareness about the importance of our historic places. The Florida African American Heritage Preservation Network annual conference will take place May 18-20 in Tallahassee at the Florida State University’s Turnbull Conference Center, and the Florida Historic Capitol Museum will host their annual Rotunda Rendezvous on the evening of May 19, where a proclamation issued by Florida Governor Rick Scott will be publicly read by Secretary Detzner.
Social Media Campaign
The Division of Historical Resources has launched a social media campaign through the Florida Main Street Facebook page highlighting National Historic Landmarks in the state, and engaging new followers through a weekly sweepstakes opportunity and regular posts using #NationalHistoricLandmarksFL.
Other Florida Department of State social media outlets, including the Bureau of Archaeological Research, Florida Folklife Program, Viva Florida 500 and The Grove, are continuing the conversation about historic preservation in Florida by connecting with the national preservation campaign using #PreservationMonth.
Highlighted National Historic Landmarks to Visit this May
Ernest Hemingway Home, Key West
Visit the tranquil studio, home and gardens where Nobel Prize winner, Ernest Hemmingway was motivated to write novels during his most productive years, and see living descendants of the legendary six-toed cats. Guided tours are ongoing daily. For more information visit HemingwayHome.com
González-Alvarez House – Florida’s Oldest House, St. Augustine
As part of the Oldest House Museum Complex on St. Francis Street in St. Augustine, the González-Alvarez House is the oldest surviving Spanish Colonial dwelling in Florida. The site has been occupied since the 1600s and the present house dates to the early 1700s. Since 1893 visitors have toured the house to see evidence of the Spanish, British and American occupations of St. Augustine and to learn how the residents lived. In 1970 the U.S. Department of the Interior designated the house a National Historic Landmark. For more information visit StAugustineHistoricalSociety.org/oldhouse.html.
Henry B. Plant Museum, Tampa
The Henry B. Plant Museum on the campus of the University of Tampa is a lifestyle museum, with original furnishings, reproduction Edison carbon filament lighting, limited signage and authentic experiences that allow visitors to experience the Gilded Age first-hand. This quintessential Victorian palace features unique Moorish Revival architecture, opulent European furniture and art treasures of the original railroad resort. For more information visit PlantMuseum.com.
Mission San Luis, Tallahassee
A visit to Mission San Luis transports visitors back to 1703 where Apalachee Indians and newcomers from Spain lived together. Hear the ring of the blacksmith's hammer, smell traditional foods being cooked over an open fire, and walk the plaza where the Apalachees played their traditional ball games. Experience the largest historic-period Indian building found in the Southeast and greet the friar at the church. Learn about a soldier's life at the fort, and explore 300-year-old artifacts excavated onsite, or simply enjoy the beautiful outdoor setting with a picnic lunch or nature walk. For more information visit MissionSanLuis.org.
National Naval Aviation Museum, Naval Air Station Pensacola
Located at the National Historic Landmark Naval Air Station in Pensacola, the National Naval Aviation Museum is the world’s largest Naval Aviation museum and one of the most-visited museums in the state of Florida. Share the excitement of Naval Aviation’s rich history and see more than 150 beautifully restored aircraft representing Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard Aviation. These historic and one-of-a-kind aircraft are displayed both inside the Museum’s nearly 350,000 square feet of exhibit space and outside on its 37-acre grounds. For more information visit NavalAviationMuseum.org.
Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami
Vizcaya Museum and Gardens is a National Historic Landmark that preserves the Miami estate of agricultural industrialist James Deering to engage the community and its visitors in learning through the arts, history and the environment. Built between 1914 and 1922, Vizcaya features the Main House, 10 acres of formal gardens, a rockland hammock (native forest), mangrove shore, the Vizcaya café and shop, and numerous special events. For more information visit Vizcaya.org.
About The Division of Historical Resources
The Florida Department of State’s Division of Historical Resources (DHR) is responsible for preserving and promoting Florida’s historical, archaeological, and folk culture resources. DHR directs historic preservation efforts throughout the state in cooperation with state and federal agencies, local governments, private organizations, and individuals. The director of DHR serves as the State Historic Preservation Officer, acting as the liaison with the national historic preservation program conducted by the National Park Service. The Division is comprised of two Bureaus or major program areas: archaeological research and historic preservation. For more information, visit flheritage.com.