January 20, 2019

UMW Awards Historic Preservation Book Prize

The University of Mary Washington’s Center for Historic Preservation has awarded the 2018 Book Prize to Caitlin DeSilvey for Curated Decay: Heritage Beyond Saving. The Center awards the prize each year to an author whose book has a positive impact on preservation in the United States. “Curated Decay is a beautifully written book that conceptualizes […]

Smith and Burtis Publish on Tools for Preservation

In January, Andréa Livi Smith and Martha Burtis had their article, “A Practical Cultural Resource Survey Tool for Preservation,” published in a special issue of the Association for Preservation Technology Bulletin. The piece shares a project Smith and Burtis have collaborated on since fall 2013 when they decided to develop an online tool to facilitate student collection of data during culture-resource surveys around Fredericksburg.

Prior to the project, data was collected in paper form, transcribed by students to numerous Excel spreadsheets, and then merged together by Smith. The process involved numerous opportunities for introducing errors and was laborious and time-consuming.

Using WordPress as a platform for building a database application, the two developed a new approach resulting in the Historic Environment Resource Assessment tool found at survey.andrealivismith.com. While conducting surveys in the field, students can login to the site on their mobile devices, and add their own data, including uploading photos of the sites they’re surveying. Later, they can return to entries to edit and refine their own or to comment upon their classmates’. At the end of the semester, Smith can easily export all the data in a standard CSV file, which can be imported into SPSS for further analysis by the class.

In addition to making it easier and smoother for students to collect data, the tool also makes is straightforward for Smith to update and tailor the collection form each fall semester, as students tackle new neighborhoods.

On the whole, the project is a fine example of what can be accomplished when faculty and instructional technologists collaborate to create new kinds of online experiences for UMW students using free and low-cost technology.

Fredericksburg Frejus Celebrate 35th Anniversary as Sister Cities (Fredericksburg.Today)

Smith Presents at International Preservation Conference

Andréa Livi Smith, associate professor of historic preservation, presented at the Association of Preservation Technology International’s annual conference in Québec City on Oct. 29. She discussed the use of technology for cultural resource data collection in preservation. Her peer reviewed talk, translated live into French and Spanish, highlighted the survey site developed on the UMWBlogs platform with Martha Burtis of DTLT, and its application for the capstone preservation course. The survey tool is a new model for preservation and is at the bleeding edge of the use of technology in the field. Smith emphasized its practicality for practitioners and researchers. The survey itself can be found at survey.umwblogs.org

Honors Students Explore Washington, D.C. Architecture

group of students posed in front of Union Station.

Honors scholars in front of Union Station during the fall 14 field trip.

In August, incoming UMW Honors Scholars participated in a common reading experience, reading the book “The Devil in the White City” by Eric Larson. To expand on the theme of the planning and architecture of the Chicago’s World’s Fair, Andrea Smith, Department of Historic Preservation, led the fall field for the honors program on Saturday Oct. 4. Twenty six honors students, Professor of Economics Steve Greenlaw, Professor of Chemistry Kelli Slunt, and Assistant Professor of Environmental Science Melanie Szulczewski enjoyed learning about the urban planning and contributions of Daniel Burnham (one of the main characters in “The Devil in the White City”) while exploring Union Station, The National Mall, and the National Building Museum.

Smith Publishes Preservation Education Paper

Assistant Professor of Historic Preservation Andréa Livi Smith’s article “Development of a Preservation Planning Board Game” was published in Preservation Education: Sharing Best Practices and Finding Common Ground edited by Barry L. Stiefel and Jeremy C. Wells (University Press of New England).

Smith Speaks at Preservation Symposium

Andréa Livi Smith, assistant professor and director of the Center for Historic Preservation, gave an invited talk at the Directions in Twenty-First Century Preservation Symposium. The symposium was organized by Historic New England and hosted by Roger Williams University in Bristol, RI on March 29. The national audience included students from over a dozen institutions was well as professionals and researchers. Smith’s talk, entitled “Don’t be That Guy,” discussed the importance of garnering and maintaining allies in the process of preservation.

Andréa Livi Smith Presents at Conferences

Andréa Livi Smith presented at three national/international conferences in October.

  • Smith presented a paper on the urban renewal on the Eastern edge of Paris at the Association for Preservation Technology International’s annual conference, titled “Preserving the Metropolis” held in New York City.
  • Smith led a session on the links between sustainability, public health, and historic preservation at the annual conference of the National Trust for Historic Preservation held in Indianapolis, Ind. Along with Dr. Smith, Dr. Tracy Hadden-Loh, director of research at the Rails-to-Trails Conservancy and Nathan Holth, author of HistoricBridges.org provided context on the importance of blending the approaches for effective preservation.
Additional details about the conferences and Smith’s activities can be found on twitter at @smithpres with tags: #issotl13, #aptnyc, and #presconf respectively.


Andréa Livi Smith Hosts Preservation Education Symposium

Andréa Livi Smith, assistant professor and director of the Center for Historic Preservation, organized and hosted the second Undergraduate Historic Preservation Education Symposium (UHPES) on the UMW campus on June 20-22. Dr. Smith analyzed findings from the first symposium, held in 2010, culminating in an article published in the current edition of Preservation Education and Research. This second iteration of UHPES brought together faculty in historic preservation from undergraduate as well as graduate programs from around the country. Pedagogy, curriculum development, and student placement were the main topics of discussion. Findings from the second UHPES will be posted on the Center for Historic Preservation website. The event was held with the generous support of the Hofer Fund.