On the Road Again: The National Historic Preservation Act 50th Anniversary Exhibit Travels to West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center

On Monday December 5, 2016, Albert Gore Research Center Director Dr. Louis Kyriakoudes and graduate assistant Julie Maresco traveled to the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center in Brownsville, Tennessee, to install the traveling exhibit at its second stop.  The National Historic Preservation Act of 1966: Preserving Tennessee’s Cultural heritage for 50 Years exhibit consists of 5 panels that show the affects of the NHPA on a national, state, region, and local level. You may have learned about this exhibit and how it came to be from Ms. Maresco’s 24 October blog.  West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center Director Sonia Outlaw-Clark created an additional panel featuring Haywood County’s preservation efforts and the work of their local Haywood Heritage Foundation.

Ms. Outlaw-Clark organized the exhibit’s opening reception, which was well attended by friends from the community and state.  (Please see the slide show below.)  She also gave Dr. Kyriakoudes and Ms. Maresco a tour of the historical properties under her stewardship, including Delta Heritage Center, the Flagg Grove School (childhood school of Tina Turner), and the home of Sleepy John Estes.

Slide show of the opening reception at the West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center

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As this was the second stop for the exhibit, and because many parties were interviewed by WBBJ News Channel 7, there was time for reflection about the exhibit–the process, purpose and what it might mean for Tennesseans.  For Ms. Maresco, the exhibit was a positive experience and “this exhibit was a meaningful project that provided me with the opportunity to apply historic preservation theory from the classroom to the field by reaching out to communities and learning how buildings and landscapes are important to them.”  Dr. Kyriakoudes sees the exhibit as an opportunity to unite communities through historic preservation efforts. “Tennessee is a large state, of course we have our historic three regions, but we share a broader common history and historic preservation in one way that we can recognize and celebrate that history.”

The stops for the exhibit are at the following institutions:

1.) Tusculum College’s Andrew Johnson Library and Museum in Greeneville, TN                  2.) West Tennessee Delta Heritage Center in Brownsville, TN                                                        3.) Historic Lebanon in Lebanon, TN                                                                                                      4.) the Promise Land Community in Dickson County, TN                                                                5.) the Heritage Center in Murfreesboro, TN

The exhibit is the work of the Albert Gore Research Center in conjunction with the Center for Historic Preservation and the Middle Tennessee State University public history program.

Click here to see WBBJ news Channel 7’s article on the exhibit

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