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Position Paper 2004:
GCG Supports Historic Preservation

Reviewed 2014

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. supports preservation of the state's historic places buildings, districts, archeological sites, and especially cultural/historic sites. Historic resources face constant pressures; many have been destroyed.

GCG conducts garden pilgrimages with proceeds supporting matching grants for historic garden preservation. Since 1998, tour proceeds have produced more than $65,000 for such grants. Additionally, also with Georgia Department of Natural Resources, Historic Preservation Division, and Cherokee Garden Library at Atlanta History Center, GCG is determining the current status of gardens described in the 1933 Garden History of Georgia, 1733-1933. Resulting updated information will be useful to all those interested in the beauty and diversity of Georgia's gardens and landscapes.

Cultural/historic landscapes are especially fragile. The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. supports the following activities to encourage their preservation:

  • Identification and evaluation of Georgia's historic landscapes. In order to preserve the state's historic places, it is important to know what they are and why they are significant.
  • Development of educational programs and activities to increase public interest, support, and awareness of preservation of Georgia's historic landscapes and properties.
  • Increasing local, state, and national initiatives to identify as well as offer incentives and financial resources to preserve and maintain historic properties.

The Garden Club of Georgia, Inc. supports increased cooperation among and interaction with national, state, and local preservation and conservation groups to promote an appreciation for historic landscapes and to encourage their preservation.

Glossary of Terms

Cultural Landscapes—Geographic areas, including both cultural and natural resources and the wildlife or domestic animals therein, associated with historic events, activities, or persons.

Historic Landscapes—Areas including residential gardens and community parks, scenic highways, rural communities, institutional grounds, cemeteries, battlefields, and zoological gardens. They are composed of character-defining features, which contribute to the landscapes' physical appearances as they have evolved over time. In addition to vegetation and topography, cultural landscapes may include water features such as ponds, streams, and fountains; circulation features such as roads, paths, steps, and walls; buildings; and furnishings, including fences, benches, lights, and sculptural objects.

Historic Designed Landscapes—Landscapes consciously designed or laid out by a landscape architect, master gardener, architect, or horticulturist according to design principles, or an amateur gardener working in a recognized style or tradition. It may be associated with a significant person/s trend, or event in landscape architecture; or illustrate an important development in the theory and practice of landscape architecture. Aesthetic values play a significant role in designed landscapes. Examples include parks, campuses, and estates.

Preservation—The act or process of applying measures to sustain the existing form, integrity, and materials of an historic property. Work, including preliminary measures to protect and stabilize the property, generally focuses upon the ongoing maintenance and repair of historic materials and features items rather than extensive replacement and new construction.

Definitions are adapted from the National Park Service Preservation Brief #36, "Protecting Cultural Landscapes: Planning, Treatment, and Management of Historic Landscapes."

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