• Many Glacier Hotel at Glacier National Park, Montana

    DSC Workflows

Cultural Landscape Report Overview

 

1.0 Imperatives

As appropriate, utilize the following at all stages of Cultural Landscape Report preparation processes:

National Register Bulletins Relevant to Historic Structures

U.S. Department of the Interior. National Park Service. Guidelines for Evaluating and Documenting Rural Historic Landscapes, by Linda Flint McClelland, J. Timothy Keller, Genevieve P. Keller, and Robert Z. Melnick. National Register Bulletin 30. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1990.

_____.Guidelines for Evaluating and Documenting Traditional Cultural Properties, by Patricia L. Parker and Thomas F. King. National Register Bulletin 38. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1990.

_____.Guidelines for Evaluating and Registering Cemeteries and Burial Places, by Elisabeth Walton Potter and Beth Boland. National Register Bulletin 41. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1992.

_____.Guidelines for Identifying, Evaluating, and Registering America's Historic Battlefields, by Patrick W. Andrus. National Register Bulletin 40. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1992.

_____.Guidelines for Identifying, Evaluating, and Registering Historic Mining Properties, by Bruce J. Noble, Jr., and Robert Spude. National Register Bulletin 42. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1992.

_____.Guidelines for Local Surveys: A Basis for Preservation Planning, by Anne Derry, H. Ward Jandl, Carol D. Shull, and Jan Thorman. Rev. ed. by Patricia L. Parker. National Register Bulletin 24. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1985.

_____.How to Apply National Register Criteria for Evaluation. Rev. ed. National Register Bulletin 15. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1991.

_____.How to Evaluate and Nominate Designed Historic Landscapes, by J. Timothy Keller and Genevieve P. Keller. National Register Bulletin 18. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1987.

_____.Researching a Historic Property, by Eleanor O'Donnell. National Register Bulletin 39. Washington, D.C.: U.S. Department of the Interior, National Park Service, 1991.

Partner Publications Relevant to Cultural Landscapes

America's National Park Roads and Parkways, Drawings from the Historic American Engineering Record edited by Timothy Davis, Todd A. Croteau, and Christopher H. Marston Hardcover - 400 pages (2004) Johns Hopkins University Press: ISBN: 0-8018-7878-0.

An Architectural Guidebook to the National Parks: Arizona, New Mexico, Texas by Harvey H. Kaiser Paperback- 240 pages (2003) Gibbs Smith: ISBN: 1-58685-068-7.

An Architectural Guidebook to the National Parks: California, Oregon, Washington by Harvey H. Kaiser Paperback - 280 pages (2002) Gibbs Smith: ISBN: 1-58685-066-0.

A Guide to Cultural Landscape Reports: Contents, Process, and Techniques by Robert R. Page, Cathy A. Gilbert, Susan A. Dolan, A Guide to Cultural Landscape Reports: Landscapes Lines 1-16 Paperback - (2005) Government Printing Office: Stock Number: 024-005-01220-6.

A Guide to Cultural Landscape Reports: Landscapes Lines 15-16 Paperback - (2005) Government Printing Office: Stock Number: 024-005-01288-5.

Landmarks in the Landscape: Historic Architecture in the National Parks of the West by Harvey H. Kaiser Hardcover - 312 pages (1997) Chronicle Books: ISBN: 0811818543.

Mission 66 Visitor Centers: The History of a Building Type by Sarah Allaback Paperback - 340 pages (2000) Government Printing Office: Stock Number: 024-005-01204-4.

Mission 66: Modernism and the National Park Dilemma by Ethan Carr Hardcover - 424 pages (2007) University of Massachusetts Press: ISBN: 978-1-55849-587-6.

The National Park Architecture Sourcebook by Harvey H. Kaiser Softcover - 600 pages (2008) Princeton Architectural Press: ISBN: 978-1-56898-742-2.

Park and Recreation Structures: Administration and Basic Service Facilities: Recreation and Cultural Facilities: Overnight and Organized Camp by Albert H. Good Hardcover - 613 pages (1999) Princeton Architectural Press: ISBN: 1568981716.

Wilderness by Design: Landscape Architecture and the National Park Service by Ethan Carr Paperback - 386 pages (1999) University of Nebraska Press: ISBN: 080326383X.

The National Park Architecture Sourcebook by Harvey H. Kaiser Softcover - 600 pages (2008) Princeton Architectural Press: ISBN: 978-1-56898-742-2.

 

2.0 Cultural Landscape Background

From Preservation Brief 36: Protecting Cultural Landscapes-Planning, Treatment, and Management of Historic Landscapes.

Cultural landscapes can range from thousands of acres of rural tracts of land to a small homestead with a front yard of less than one acre. Like historic buildings and districts, these special places reveal aspects of our country's origins and development through their form and features and the ways they were used. Cultural landscapes also reveal much about our evolving relationship with the natural world.

A cultural landscape is defined as "a geographic area, including both cultural and natural resources and the wildlife or domestic animals therein, associated with a historic event, activity, or person or exhibiting other cultural or aesthetic values." There are four general types of cultural landscapes, not mutually exclusive: historic sites, historic designed landscapes, historic vernacular landscapes, and ethnographic landscapes. These are defined below.

Historic landscapes include residential gardens and community parks, scenic highways, rural communities, institutional grounds, cemeteries, battlefields and zoological gardens. They are composed of a number of character-defining features which, individually or collectively contribute to the landscape's physical appearance 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.

Most historic properties have a cultural landscape component that is integral to the significance of the resource. Imagine a residential district without sidewalks, lawns and trees or a plantation with buildings but no adjacent lands. A historic property consists of all its cultural resources--landscapes, buildings, archeological sites and collections. In some cultural landscapes, there may be a total absence of buildings.

The planning, treatment, and maintenance of cultural landscapes requires a multi-disciplinary approach. In landscapes, such as parks and playgrounds, battlefields, cemeteries, village greens, and agricultural land preserves more than any other type of historic resource--communities rightly presume a sense of stewardship. It is often this grass roots commitment that has been a catalyst for current research and planning initiatives. Individual residential properties often do not require the same level of public outreach, yet a systematic planning process will assist in making educated treatment, management and maintenance decisions.

Wise stewardship protects the character, and or spirit of a place by recognizing history as change over time. Often, this also involves our own respectful changes through treatment. The potential benefits from the preservation of cultural landscapes are enormous. Landscapes provide scenic, economic, ecological, social, recreational and educational opportunities that help us understand ourselves as individuals, communities and as a nation. Their ongoing preservation can yield an improved quality of life for all, and, above all, a sense of place or identity for future generations.