This blog originally set out to chronicle the findings made while researching the history of 811-819 South Cathedral Place in Richmond, Virginia, for a historic preservation and architectural history course at Virginia Commonwealth University. Since completing that research, I anticipate future coursework in this field, and additional research topics as well. I am broadening this blog to embrace future research as well as my general appreciation for and interest in the architectural fabric that makes our city so rich and beautiful.
Here I will also promote the efforts of established organizations to preserve this fabric and celebrate Richmond’s history. I wish to advocate for the endeavors of our planning and development professionals who responsibly integrate threatened or discarded historic structures or urban landscapes. Doing so sustains our built resources, hand in hand with the big “green” movement, which hopefully only grows stronger.
As I drive around the majority of the greater Richmond area, a question posed by Calder Loth, renowned Senior Architectural Historian (retired) of the Virginia Department of Historic Resources, rings in my head, “…are [newer buildings] going to be considered worthy of preserving” years from now? Richmond has come a long way in preserving such architectural character. Monument Avenue and The Fan District are nationally-recognized examples of such breadth in conservation. But we have lost so many jewels, and much remains threatened. As a society is seems we are becoming more focused on sustaining energy, our food sources, etc., and I hope soon, that sentiment will extend broadly to our built environment.