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Recently the Montgomery County Department of History & Archives received a $10,000 Preserve New York grant from the Preservation League of New York State to support the cost of a reconnaissance level survey of rural resources in Montgomery County.

Jay DiLorenzo, President of the Preservation League, presents Kelly Farquhar, Montgomery County Historian, with a $10,000 check.
Jay DiLorenzo, President of the Preservation League, presents Kelly Farquhar, Montgomery County Historian, with a $10,000 check.

This project will serve as the first phase of the creation of a standardized, broad-based survey of Montgomery County. This first phase will survey the county’s westernmost towns including St. Johnsville, Palatine, Mohawk, Minden and Root. The rural resources in question are significant within the larger geographic and cultural setting because they are located among historic land divisions and transportation corridors, namely the Erie Canal.

The project will help the county develop a preservation plan to highlight its rich history. If the survey leads to National Register designations, property owners could qualify for the NYS Rehabilitation Tax Credit. The survey will not include village centers or resources previously listed on the National Register. Jessie Ravage of Cooperstown will be the administrator of this project.

“I believe that the history of Montgomery County is one of our greatest and most important resources and one that adds character to our rural communities,” said County Executive Matthew L. Ossenfort. “As the first step in this detailed process, the county will assess the historic buildings and landmarks in towns in the western part of the county. This will lead us toward the creation of a working plan to preserve our historic treasures. Identifying and maintaining these historical buildings not only safeguards our traditions and our history, but enhances the benefits of heritage tourism, which can be an important economic driver for the county and the region.”

The Preserve New York Grant Program is made possible by the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature. “With the announcement of the 2015 awards, the total support provided by Preserve New York since its launch in 1993 is just over $2 million to 320 projects statewide,” said Jay DiLorenzo, President of the Preservation League. “Preserve New York has a strong track record of bolstering local preservation efforts and delivering a strong return on investment.”

“At its August, 2015 meeting, the Preserve New York grant program panel selected 14 applicants in 11 counties around the state to share $114,990 in funding,” said Erin Tobin, the League’s Director of Preservation. “As always, the competition for these funds was intense. The Preservation League is delighted to help advance the preservation efforts of Montgomery County with timely funding from Preserve New York.”

For more information on the Preserve New York Grant Program, please call 518-462-5658 x 10 or visit the League’s website at