Historic Structure Report Standards


1.0 Historic Structure Report Standards

1.1 A historic structure report (HSR) is prepared to minimize loss of character-defining features and materials whenever existing information about the developmental history and condition of the historic structure does not provide an adequate basis upon which to address anticipated management objectives, whenever alternative courses of action for impending treatment and use could have adverse effects, or to record treatment.

1.2 Architectural, landscape, and archeological investigations supporting an HSR have the least possible impact on the property studied and employ nondestructive methods to the maximum extent possible; they are prescribed and justified in a task directive that includes a research design and impact analysis.


2.0 Historic Structure Report Model Contents

For additional information on the contents of each section, see Historic Structure Report Deliverables.

  • Cover Page

  • Table of Contents

  • Executive Summary
    • Provides a concise account of:
      1. research done to produce the HSR
      2. major research findings
      3. major issues identified in the task directive
      4. recommendations for treatment or use
      Deviations from general planning documents should be identified here and discussed more fully in the body of the report.

  • Administrative Data
    • This section contains:
      1. names, numbers, and location data used to refer to the historic structure
      2. the proposed treatment of the structure including the source document
      3. related studies
      4. cultural resource data including date listed in the National Register, period of significance, and context of significance
      5. recommendations for documentation, cataloging, and storage of materials generated by the HSR

  • Part 1. Developmental History
    • Historical Background and Context
      • This section briefly describes the people and events associated with the structure. The section should establish a recommended period or periods of significance if this has not been done in the National Register nomination or historic resource study (HRS).
    • Chronology of Development and Use
      • Physical construction, modification, and use of the structure is summarized in this section. The text should be based on historical documentation with corroboration from first-hand observation and materials analysis.
    • Physical Description
      • Contains a systematic accounting of all features, materials, and spaces according to age, significance, and condition. Copies of computer-generated inspection reports should be included in the appendix but summarized in the body of the chapter. Includes a discussion of existing conditions of physical and programmatic access for people with disabilities. The text should also discuss causes of deterioration and structural adequacy.
      • Character defining features - a list of the prominent or distinctive aspects, qualities, or characteristics of a historic property that contribute significantly to its physical character. Structures, objects, vegetation, spatial relationships, views, furnishings, decorative details, and materials may be such features.

  • Part 2. Ultimate Treatment and Use
    • Ultimate Treatment and Use
      • Discusses and analyzes the ultimate treatment and use of the structure as defined in park planning documents. If they have not been defined, this section may recommend an ultimate treatment and use. If analysis of the structure suggests that a planned treatment or use would adversely affect it, the text may present an alternative approach.
    • Requirements for Ultimate Treatment and Use
      • Outlines applicable laws and regulations and functional requirements. Specific attention should be given to issues of human safety, fire protection, energy conservation, abatement of hazardous materials, and physical and programmatic accessibility for people with disabilities.
    • Alternatives for Treatment
      • Presents and evaluates alternative approaches to realization of the ultimate treatment. Alternatives are presented in both text and graphic form. Analysis addresses the adequacy of each solution in terms of impact on historic materials, effect on historic character, compliance with NPS policy, and other management objectives. The section concludes with elaboration on the recommended course of action and specific recommendations for preservation treatments.

  • Part 3. Record of Treatment
    • Completion Report
      • Summarizes:
        • the intent of the work
        • the way in which the work was approached and accomplished
        • the time required to do the work
        • the cost of the work
        It also describes any information about the history of the structure based on physical evidence discovered during construction.
    • Technical Data
      • Contains copies of field reports, material data sheets, field notes, correspondence, accounting spread sheets, and contract summaries.

  • Appendix
    • Bibliography
    • Drawings
    • Photographs and Images
    • Materials Analysis
    • Supplementary Reports

Last updated: January 29, 2016