May 1, 2019

31 Ways to Celebrate Preservation Month

We spend all year advocating for places that matter. During Preservation Month, we flex our preservationist muscles and set aside time to celebrate and explore historic places in innovative ways. This May, the National Trust needs your help. Complete the items on the action list below, and let us know when you do by tagging #ThisPlaceMatters. We can’t wait to see what you accomplish!

Note: This Place Matters is a campaign that the National Trust started in 2009, before Black Lives Matter had come into being as a movement. Out of respect for Black Lives Matter and the important message behind it, we retired the campaign in June 2020. We encourage National Trust supporters to instead celebrate places that are important to them using the hashtags #SavingPlaces or #TellTheFullStory.

Tell a friend #ThisPlaceMatters.

Share this list on social media, and compete with your preservation pals to see who can check the most off this list. (And follow us on Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram, if you aren't already!)

Be the first to know.

Text ELEVEN to 52886 to sign up for text alerts from the National Trust, so you can be among the first to know which places are on 2019’s America’s 11 Most Endangered Historic Places List—the list drops on May 30! (Message and data rates may apply. Text STOP to quit.)

Preservation Dallas

Shop local.

Shop your local Main Street (and support preservation while you shop). From quaint downtowns to bustling city streets, Main Streets offer plenty of character and charm for all who visit.

Larry Gaynor/Flickr/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Eat somewhere new in someplace old.

There are thousands of historic buildings that find new life as restaurants. Today’s challenge: Find a new restaurant in an old building, then take yourself out to lunch.

Help us #TellTheFullHistory.

Get inspired by Tia Mowry-Hardrict, Aldis Hodge, Marcus Scribner, and Phylicia Rashad—African American artists and activists— as they tell us about the historic places that matter to them. Then, #TellTheFullHistory and share stories of historic buildings that contribute to the diversity of our nation.

Neal Santos

Discover preservation in cities.

Get the latest news on preservation in cities. Start with this webinar from Preservation Leadership Forum on opportunity zones and their effect on the preservation community.

David Kafer

Tell the world.

Share your photos of historic places. We love to see passionate preservationists and place-lovers Instagramming gorgeous old buildings in our neighborhood, so don’t forget to use #ThisPlaceMatters!

Hit the streets.

And while you’re representing the #ThisPlaceMatters movement, take your This Place Matters swag out on the town.

Sam Kittner

Take action for historic places.

Speak up for places under threat, from the National Mall Tidal Basin to Route 66, plus all of the invaluable preservation tools that work to protect them.

Nancy Pierce

Subscribe to our Spotify channel.

Did you know we have preservation playlists? Make your ears happy with music connected to San Francisco, road trips to historic places, and the preservation movement by subscribing to our channel on Spotify.

Minesh Bacrania

Get connected.

Join the conversation with other preservationists on Forum Connect. Get started with a guide to becoming a professional historic preservationist or a thread on zoning, segregation, and preservation—or create your own!

Selavie Photography

Get inspired.

We love showing off the rockstars who work to put preservation first in their businesses, organizations, and communities. Get inspired by our 2018 National Preservation Award winners, from a 1.5-million-square-foot mixed-use “vertical urban village” to a converted school that now serves affordable apartments.

Debbie Monterrey KMOX

Stay in historic accommodations.

When travelling, book a historic hotel to find beautiful accommodations surrounded by the past. Or, have a meal or a cocktail at a hotel closer to home to get the change of scenery you want without breaking the bank.

David Kafer

Plan a road trip.

Last year, we took the road trip of a lifetime. Read about our efforts to preserve Route 66 and about the places we visited. Then, start planning your own!

Matthew Gilson

Explore new opportunities.

Get involved! Volunteer for a local preservation organization or, if you’re thinking of starting a career in preservation, check out these job openings in the field.

We Are the Next

Explore a historic place.

Visit a National Trust Historic Site, Historic Artist's Home, or Distinctive Destination near you. Did you know that members of the National Trust get deep discounts at our collection of Historic Sites and 200 Distinctive Destinations around the country?

Yellowstone National Park/Flickr/CC BY-2.0

Contribute to the National Register.

Help protect your community by identifying a nominee to the National Register of Historic Places. It’s a great way to let your neighborhood know that this place matters!

dualitart/flickr/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Discover your house's history.

Do you live in a historic building? Find out how you can learn more about the history of your house!

Advisory Council on Historic Preservation

Get hands-on preservation experience.

Get involved with hands-on preservation in your community. You can start by reading about our ongoing work at HOPE Crew (Hands-On Preservation Experience). Then, find your own opportunities to get out in the field!

Jerry and Pat Donaho/Flickr/CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Find your park.

Did you know there are 419 National Park Service units in the United States? We’re sure there’s at least one near you, so get out there and visit it! Then, you can help fix our parks by signing our pledge to support allocating funding to the $12 billion deferred maintenance backlog our parks face today.

Anne Lusk

Meet your dream home.

By this point, we’re pretty sure you love old homes … maybe enough to buy one someday? Meet your next home—or at least dream about it for now—in our weekly Preservation Personals series.

Cincinnati Preservation Collective

Plan preservation events.

Preservation doesn’t have to be boring (as we hope you’ve learned from this list so far). Plan a captivating event with other people who care about old places. Your options are limitless, from historic bike rides and city tours to building funerals and more.

Franz Neumeier

Find a National Treasure.

From a decisive win for Virginia's James River to the recent success at the Delta Queen steamboat, our diverse portfolio of National Treasures (nationally significant places where the National Trust is taking direct action) has never been stronger. Learn more about old places that define us as a nation by checking out the complete collection.

The Prince Estate/Paisley Park

Read the latest issue.

The Spring 2019 issue of Preservation magazine includes stories about our 40 Under 40: Places project, the opening of a much-anticipated coffee shop in an old building, and more. To receive Preservation in your own home, join the National Trust and a fresh new copy will arrive each quarter.

Tell legislators #ThisPlaceMatters.

Contact your elected officials to make sure they're prioritizing the preservation issues you care about. You can get started with our fill-in-the-blank form letter.

ercwttmn/Flickr/CC BY-ND 2.0

Celebrate the Bauhaus movement.

Celebrate the 100th anniversary of Bauhaus—a school started in Weimar, Germany, that moved to the U.S. in the 20th century and influenced so much of the Modern architecture we see today—by reading this brief history of the movement.

LeAnne Cantrell

Encourage the next generation.

It’s never too early to start learning why old places matter! Teach the next generation about preservation with fun ways to spark their passion for history.

Nick Thompson/Flickr/CC BY NC SA 2.0

Add to your reading list.

Enough talking about old places! Start reading about them with a preservationist book club. We recommend Why Old Places Matter by National Trust staffer Tom Mayes. Want more? These historical fiction books that focus on old places can also kick off your club.

Carol Highsmith/Library of Congress

Support us.

Make a monthly gift and help us save places all year long.

Angelo Domini/Flickr/CC BY-ND-NC 2.0

Take a quiz.

Now take a break from the heavy lifting—take one of our quizzes to test your preservation smarts (or find your preservation personality). You can learn which architect you most relate to; find the perfect Historic Hotel for your next vacation; and discover how much you really know about architecture (and many more!)

Say "cheers" to Preservation Month!

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