Ohio History Connection is one of 11 recipients nationwide to receive National Park Service grant

The National Park Service (NPS) announced on August 30th, 2021 a $7.27 million investment in the preservation of historic buildings in rural communities across the nation via the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grant. Ohio History Connection received $750,000 as one of 11 recipients across 10 states to be awarded funds.

The Ohio History Connection plans to use these funds to re-grant to projects in rural communities that support the preservation of historic buildings and economic  development. This grant marks the  second year of  funding Ohio History Connection has received  from the Paul Bruhn Historic  Revitalization Grant  Program,  named  in honor of the late Paul Bruhn, executive director of the Preservation Trust of Vermont for nearly 40 years.

This new round of grants is focused on Main Street communities in Appalachia. Five Appalachian communities that participate in the Ohio Main Street program are eligible to apply for grant funds- Cambridge, Coshocton, Marietta, Millersburg and Portsmouth.

“In many ways, the strength of Marietta’s local economy is directly tied to our ability to preserve and steward our historic assets. National landmarks, state history, and a multitude of local, generational stories are tied to our historic, downtown buildings. This opportunity to utilize NPS funds to save our historic buildings and further bolster economic development in our city is one we are truly grateful for and certainly one that will make a world of a difference for our property owners and local leaders,” said Cristie Thomas, Executive Director of Marietta Main Street. “Thanks to the Ohio History Connection and Heritage Ohio, we have new tools in our toolkit to revitalize our community and strengthen our regional economy.”

“Our downtown is not only historic and beautiful but important to our vitality as a community. As a hub for commerce, services, events, and fellowship, downtown will benefit from this grant. My goal is to continue to support the great effort of the building owners, Marietta Main Street, and all other stakeholders downtown. As a City, we have many more projects planned and downtown will continue to improve as a safe, clean, polished, and welcoming area to enjoy,” said Josh Schlicher, Mayor for the City of Marietta.

The Ohio Main Street Program, administered by Heritage Ohio, works with communities across the state to revitalize their historic and traditional commercial areas, improving all aspects of downtown and central business districts. Property owners in the five pre-selected communities, in coordination with their Main Street organization, will submit applications for funds to rehabilitate historic  buildings. The grant program will be administered  by Ohio History Connection’s State Historic Preservation Office in partnership with Heritage Ohio.

“We are thrilled to partner with Heritage Ohio to bring federal bricks-and-mortar historic preservation dollars to Appalachian communities in Ohio,” said Amanda Schraner Terrell, Deputy State Historic Preservation Officer, Ohio History Connection. “This grant opportunity encourages Ohioans to save their important historic buildings while fostering economic development-a win-win.”

“We look forward to managing the second round of Paul Bruhn grants, this time in Ohio’s Appalachian region,” said Joyce Barrett, executive director of Heritage Ohio. “This level of funding enables grant awards of sufficient size to greenlight  projects that will have real impact on their communities. We expect 5-10 projects will be funded under this program.”

This project is supported through the Paul Bruhn Historic Revitalization Grants Program, provided by the Historic Preservation Fund, as administered by the National Park Service, Department of Interior.

To learn more about this opportunity through Marietta Main Street, downtown property owners can reach out to Marietta Main Street executive director Cristie Thomas via director@mariettamainstreet.org or 740-516-6418.