Wednesday, June 22, 2011

America's most endangered historic places

A Civil War fort, a Colonial-era farm and a 1,000-square-mile swath of northwestern New Mexico. What could such disparate destinations have in common? Sadly, their one shared characteristic is that they all made the latest edition of America’s Most Endangered Places.

This year’s Endangered Historic Places include:

Bear Butte, Meade County, S.D.: Considered sacred ground by as many as 17 Native American tribes, this 4,426-foot mountain is threatened by proposed energy-development projects that officials say “will negatively impact the sacred site and further degrade the cultural landscape.”
Belmead-on-the-James, Powhatan County, Va.: This one-time slave-holding plantation became a school for African-American boys in 1893. Closed in 1970, the Gothic Revival manor house and other buildings are in need of emergency repair.
China Alley, Hanford, Calif.: Brick facades and Asian detailing create a unique atmosphere in this once-bustling Chinatown, which dates back to 1877. Today, it suffers from disuse, deterioration and insensitive development.
Fort Gaines, Dauphin Island, Ala.: Established in 1821, this fort played a major role in the Battle of Mobile Bay during the Civil War. Today, it’s under siege by tides and currents, which are eroding its shoreline by as much as 50 feet per year.
Greater Chaco Landscape, N.M.: This 1,000-square-mile swath of northwestern New Mexico is home to hundreds of Native American cultural and archeological sites. It’s threatened by increased oil and gas exploration in the area.

Is there any place in America that would make your endangered historic places list?

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