• HOPE Crew Teaches Gravestone Restoration at Houston's Olivewood Cemetery

    January 29, 2020

    More than two dozen HOPE Crew volunteers recently completed gravestone repairs at the historic Olivewood Cemetery, the first incorporated African American Cemetery in Houston, Texas.

    During the two-day cemetery conservation workshop in January, Rusty Brenner of Texas Cemetery Restoration led hands-on training in gravestone assessment, cleaning, alignment, resetting, and repair. Twenty-seven volunteers from Lonestar College and the surrounding community participated in the workshop at this UNESCO World Heritage Site.

    Olivewood Cemetery is part of the Slave Route Project, an international registry of locations involved in the transatlantic slave trade. Support for this HOPE Crew workshop was provided by the Fund II Foundation, D/2, and the Descendants of Olivewood.

  • HOPE Crew Returns to Tuskegee University for Community Window Restoration Workshop

    January 29, 2020

    Tuskegee University students and faculty were joined by members of the community for a HOPE Crew window restoration workshop on campus in early January. Nineteen participants worked under the instruction of master craftsman James Turner of Turner Restoration, learning to safely assess, deconstruct, repair, reassemble, and reinstall historic windows on campus during the three-day workshop supported by the Fund II Foundation.

    "Working on these historic windows honors the legacy of Tuskegee students who helped build these structures on campus over one hundred years ago. It's also in keeping with the educational philosophy of Tuskegee co-founder Dr. Booker T. Washington of 'learning to do by doing,'" observes HOPE Crew manager Molly Baker. This workshop was the third HOPE Crew project at Tuskegee University, and upperclassmen who participated in previous window restoration projects returned as student mentors.

    HOPE Crew will return to Tuskegee University in July 2020 for a week-long window restoration project as part of a summer training program for HBCU students offered in partnership with the National Park Service and the Advisory Council for Historic Preservation.

    Tuskegee University students and faculty, along with community members, take part in a HOPE Crew window restoration workshop.

    James Turner taught Tuskegee University students and faculty, along with community members, about historic window restoration.

  • Video: Tuskegee University Students Experience "Touching History"

    September 26, 2019

    HOPE Crew successfully completed a second year of Touching History: Preservation in Practice, a six-week summer program geared towards HBCU students working towards architecture degrees and related career path. Touching History is a joint effort of the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, the National Park Service, and the National Trust for Historic Preservation’s HOPE Crew. The program was created to raise awareness about the importance of historic preservation and conservation while engaging a new generation of preservation professionals in completing urgent preservation work at America’s HBCU campuses.

    In addition to a second year working with Morgan State University students from Baltimore, 2019 included the first Touching History practicum with students from Tuskegee University in Alabama. As one component of this six-week program, the six Tuskegee students had an opportunity to perform window restoration work on the Willcox E building on the Tuskegee University campus. The students worked under the expert direction of Jim Turner of Turner Restoration LLC, a Detroit-based firm Turner founded in 2001 to specialize in repairing historic steel and wood windows.

    Through this partnership program, Tuskegee students also had the opportunity to participate in a historic preservation training at the Western Center for Historic Preservation in Grand Teton National Park to learn about the National Park Services’ guiding principles for field-based historic preservation and a training program at the National Center for Preservation Technology and Training in Natchitoches, Louisiana.

    Here's a short video, developed by Tuskegee University, that highlights the student’s HOPE Crew experience.

  • HOPE Crew Restores Fence at John and Alice Coltrane Home

    August 29, 2019

    In August 2019, Hands-On Preservation Experience (HOPE) Crew performed important restoration work at the John and Alice Coltrane Home, located on Long Island in the community of Dix Hills. The National Trust partnered with two youth-serving initiatives from the Town of Huntington to repair the fence that fronts the entire property. The first group's participants (ages 18-24) was part of a program called Out of School, a workforce development program for at-risk youth; the second group was comprised of local volunteers (ages 14-18) from a Huntington, New York, community center.

    Over the course of several days, these teams repaired, scraped, and painted the iron fence. Father and son trades experts Ken and David Follett of Quality Restoration Works guided their efforts.

    The National Trust named the home a National Treasure in 2018, bringing its nearly 70 years of expertise to help the John and Alice Coltrane Home implement its vision for rehabilitating the now-vacant home and commemorating the Coltranes’ lasting contributions to the fields of music, humanitarianism, diplomacy, and spirituality.

    The work undertaken by African American youth at the Coltrane Home is part of a partnership between the Fund II Foundation and the Trust’s African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund (AACHAF). Other past and upcoming HOPE Crew activities made possible with Fund II support include preservation projects at the Nina Simone Childhood Home in Tryon, North Carolina; Bethel Baptist Church's Parsonage in Birmingham, Alabama; Atlanta’s Herndon Home Museum; and six-week intensive internships for architecture students enrolled at two HBCUs—part of Fund II Foundation’s commitment to diversifying STEM fields of education.

  • Birmingham's Bethel Baptist Parsonage Restored Through HOPE Crew Project

    August 16, 2019

    On July 26, 2019, the National Trust's HOPE Crew (Hands-On Preservation Experience) wrapped up a project at Bethel Baptist Church’s Parsonage in Birmingham, a site crucial to the Civil Rights Movement and the designated contact point in Alabama for the 1961 Freedom Ride from Washington, D.C. to Mississippi.

    Under the umbrella of the National Trust’s African American Cultural Heritage Action Fund, HOPE Crew performed work on the property as part of its partnership with the Fund II Foundation to engage African American youth in learning preservation trades at sites tied to African American achievement and activism.

    The crew members were provided by Cornerstone Revitalization Foundation YouthBuild Program. Between July 15 and 26, 2019, the team carefully documented and restored the windows of the parsonage under the supervision of a local master craftsman, Jim Turner.

    Other past and upcoming HOPE Crew activities made possible with Fund II support include preservation projects at the Nina Simone Childhood Home in Tryon, North Carolina, the home of John and Alice Coltrane in Long Island, Atlanta’s Herndon Home Museum, and six-week intensive internships for architecture students enrolled at two HBCUs—part of Fund II Foundation’s commitment to diversifying STEM fields of education.

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