APT Legacy Project
Introduction and Project Description
APT was founded in 1968 to promote, advance, train, and disseminate information relating to historic preservation technology and heritage conservation in a larger context. Many of its founders, early members, and leaders are now considered pioneers in the historic preservation field. Many of these individuals were practitioners actively advancing historic preservation technology within the industry and their roles, work, and contributions have been largely invisible and absent from contemporary accounts and from the history and legacy of APT.
The APT Legacy Project’s objective is to collect information on the founders, early members, and leaders of APT to create a database and biographies of them to disseminate through the APT web site and other media. This will highlight and promote the field of historic preservation technology and conservation of historic structures, objects, their settings and cultural landscapes, as well as the lives, careers and work of these pioneers and their leadership role in the legacy of APT.
The APT Legacy Project was approved by the APT Board in 2012 and gathering biographical information on the founders, early members, and APT leaders has been underway since. The project has also been at work compiling information about APT’s legacy and sharing it through regular articles in the APT Communiqué.
The fields of historic preservation technology and heritage conservation have grown in professional stature in the last 50 years. Once considered a field for those interested in relics or old buildings and largely a volunteer effort, today there are many career options and work in the public, non-profit and private sectors of the economy. This growth in professionalism is due in part to the pioneers that forged the path that is now known as historic preservation and heritage conservation and related science and technology. These pioneers were architects, architectural historians, historians, planners, craft and trade mechanics, engineers, landscape architects, site managers, museum administrators, curators, journalists, authors, and educators among others. It is significant that all these professional categories have had an impact on historic preservation technology and heritage conservation; however, the contribution of these pioneers is not known to the public and to many of the professionals following in their paths. These persons have not only had a formative impact on their professions, but also were influential in forming and developing APT as an international organization. For many, their experience with APT enhanced their professional careers and other organizations to whom APT members belonged. These individual stories are the legacy of APT.
Since 2012, a small committee has completed a number of tasks advancing goals for the APT Legacy Project. These have included:
- Prepared and modified a working list of persons to research;
- Prioritized the working list and collected research on many persons;
- Prepared biographies on several persons;
- Collected oral histories on several persons and transcribed the interviews;
- Gathered existing Who’s Who profiles for those on our working list of persons;
- Created a template for an APT Who’s Who profile to capture APT-related activities for each person;
- Continue to research, gather, and compile information for those on the working list;
- Published a regular column in the APT Communique throughout 2014 titled “From the Archives,” which introduce and advanced information about APT's Legacy;
- Hiring a summer research intern in 2013 and 2016 to conduct directed research on the working list of persons, create an APT Who’s Who profile on persons ranked high on the working list, and create narrative biographies on persons ranked high on the work list; and
- Prepared and delivered a special presentation highlighting the APT Legacy Project at the APT 2014 Annual Conference in Quebec on Lee Nelson, one of APT’s founders prior to the COF Lecture.
The APT Legacy Project committee members include: Susan Bronson, FAPT; Natalie Bull, FAPT, Julia Gersovitz, FAPT; Lonnie J. Hovey, AIA, FAPT; François LeBlanc, FAPT; Hugh C. Miller, FAIA, FAPT; and Michael A. Tomlan, FAPT.