Historic Dallas, Volume 3, Number 4, Fall 1982 Page: 7 of 12
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Archaeologists Find Remains
Of Oldest Known Buildings
The National Trust made a $50,000
grant in April from its Endangered Prop-
erties Fund to the Colorado Historical
Foundation to help pay for an emer-
gency excavation of what archeolo-
gists say are likely the oldest known
'buildings in North America.
The remains of the two structures
are at Windy Gap, near Granby, Colo.
They are in the right-of-way for a 45-
foot-wide trench for a water pipeline.
being dug by the Northern Colorado
According to Arthur C. Townsend,
the Colorado state historic preserva-
tion officer and a representative of the
Colorado Historic Foundation, several
adiocarbon dating tests have revealed
the remains to be 4,000-to 5,000 years
old. Before the remains of these struc-
tures were discovered last fall, the old-
est buildings that had been found in
North America were estimated to be
2,500 years old.
"Archeologists think that the remains
survived for so long because a fire
passed over them and baked the wattle-
and-daub walls into a brick-like sub-
stance," Townsend said. "Wattl-and-
daub buildings usually decay in 200
years. If that is true, the Windy Gap
remains may be unique." So far arche-
ologists have not found any artifacts
of the people who built the structures.
The conservancy district has agreed
to delay clearing the site until July 31
to permit the excavation. It has paid
$95,000 to excavate one of the features
and to cover the cost of construction
delays. The National Trust was asked
to support part of the estimated
$135,000 cost of additional excavation
when the district's board was unable to
allocate additional funds for the project
and no federal or other private funds
"The Endangered Properties Pro-
gram is for just this type of case," said
National Trust President Michael L.
Ainslie. "When'the fund was set up in
1978 the goal was to protect buildings
or sites of national significance that
were in immediate danger of being
lost if quick action was.not taken. These
remains clearly meet those criteria."
Under Secretary of the Interior Don-
aId P. Hodel said, "Secretary Watt and
I greatly appreciate the lead taken by
the National Trust. This is an excellent
example of private, state, local and
federal entities working together in
resolution of issues." The Department
of the Interior has been involved in
the project because the pipeline is part
of a federal reclamation project carry-
ing water from the western slope of
the Rocky Mountains to the Denver-
Fort Collins area.
Focus On New Tax Credits
An architectural conference empha-
sizing how commercial rehabilitation
projects can qualify building owners
for up to a 25% tax credit, will be held
in Dallas on November 10. The con-
ference, sponsored by the Texas His-
torical Commission and Texas Society
of Architects, is one of a series of Texas
conferences held in Nov. made pos-
sible by a grant from the Don and
Sybil Harrington Foundation.
The conference, "Rehab '82: New
Economic Opportunities" will bring
together nationally known experts in
-the restoration field to present case
studies and discussion on project de-
velopment, certifiable rehabilitation
techniques, tax incentives, codes, man-
agement, and maintenance. Speakers
will include Maximillian Ferro, The
Preservation Partnership, New Bedford,
Massachusetts; Richard J. Roddewig,
attorney and independent real estate
consultant, Chicago, Illinois; and Paul
Snyder, contractor, Austin, Texas.
Conference sessions will be directed
toward architects, architects-in-training,
building industry professionals, urban
planners, and members of the financial
Pre-registration fee is $50 ($20 for
students). Conferences will also be
held in Amarillo (Nov. 9), San Antonio
(Nov. 11), and Houston (Nov. 11), and
Houston (Nov. 12). The form below
may be used to pre-register. For fur-
ther information call (512) 475-3094.
Tax Credit Cut By Congress
Congress has passed a bill that will
reduce the value of the tax credit avail-
able for restoring historic commercial
The measure is contained in H.R.
4961, a Senate-initiated tax increase.
package. It will decrease the deprecia-
tion deduction generated by a preser-
vation project by one-half or 12.5 per-
cent over 15 years.
Preservationists fear that the reduc-
tion will make it less attractive for de-
velopers to restore historic income-
producing buildings under strict
Currently a developer may take an
investment tax credit ranging from 15
to 20 percent for restoring any build-
ing older than 30 years, regardless of
historical accuracy, but -receives an
extra credit to, in effect, "do it right".
The margin between any restoration
and a certified restoration will be re-
duced under the measure.
The conference also ratified a pro-
vision sponsored by Rep. Barber
Conable (R-N.Y.) to allow some proj-
ects under contract or already begun
to claim the full tract or deduction
available under current law.
Linda Hankinson, chairman of the Education Committee, and Steve Mabry, VPfor
Preservation Services are cataloging books purchased for the new Preservation Services.
Center to be housed in the League's new headquarters in the Arnold House.
New Central Library Offers
Urban Information Center
With the opening of the new Central
Library in April, the Dallas Public
.Library began offering a new informa-
tional service of particular interest
and help to the preservationist in the
Dallas area. The Urban Information
Center, located on the 6th floor of the
Central Library at 1515 Young,
provides information and material for
the people who are living in, dealing
with or administering the urban envi-
ronment, people who are concerned
with the quality of life in the urban
Users of the center vary from con-
cerned citizens and activists to city
administrators to public administration
students. Materials include books and
periodicals on such urban issues as
planning, finance,.urban design, recrea-,
tion, police and fire service, transpor-
tation, and City of Dallas studies and
documents. City documents from other
large U.S. cities are also available for
comparisons of solutions to common
The Center also includes two special
services for citizens: APL/CAT and
Grants Information Service.
APL/CAT, A Public Library Com-
munity'Access Tool, is a listing of over
3,000 organizations within Dallas
County, including professional groups,
neighborhood organizations, hobby
and special interest clubs, art support
groups, and political action organiza-
tions. For each entry there is a name,
address, phone number, contact per-
son, and profile of interests and aims.
Grants Information Service is a
counseling service for nonprofit groups
and individuals seeking financial aid
to better their own orsothers' lives. The
trained professionals working with
the service help match the patron's
needs and interests with foundations
of similar focus. Aid and direction are
given in the research and preparation
of the grant, and a critique of the final
product can be requested.
The Urban Information Center
focuses on providing current local
information. Its format is not restricted
to print materials within the library.
One of the center's functions is to act
as a connector between various groups
and individuals of similar aims, goals,
and knowledge to facilitate the energy
created by unity of purpose.
Center hours are 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.,
Monday thru Thursday, 9a.m. to 5 p.m.,
Friday and Saturday and appointments
can be made with the various staff
members by calling 749-4182/749-4170.
HPL Plans Move
After almost ten years of service to
the community without a home of
their own, the Historic Preservation
League should be moved into their
new headquarters facility by the end
The new facility will be located in
the Arnold House at 2902 Swiss Ave-
nue. The Arnold House is part of the
Wilson block redevelopment project.
Although the office staff will be
moving into the structure, the work
may not be completed until after the
first of the year.
The Arnold House restoration proj-
ect has taken over a year and will cost
almost $300,000 before its comple-
tion. Highlighting the new facility will
be the League's Preservation Resource
Center to be located on the second
floor. The center will be open to the
Page 7 Historic Dallas Fall '82
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Dallas Historic Preservation League. Historic Dallas, Volume 3, Number 4, Fall 1982, periodical, Autumn 1982; Dallas, Texas. (https://texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth887916/m1/7/: accessed October 24, 2020), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, https://texashistory.unt.edu; crediting Preservation Dallas.