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Two endangered historic properties compete for national grant

Two sites on the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota's 10 Most Endangered Historic Places list for 2011 are competing for a national preservation grant. The Fergus Falls Regional Treatment Center and Elk River's Jackson Street Water Tower were selected to participate in the National Trust for Historic Preservation's This Place Matters Community Challenge . The sites are seeking online votes in their efforts to win $5,000, $10,000, or $25,000.

The Challenge, sponsored by Fireman's Fund Insurance Company and National Trust Insurance Services LLC, began on May 2nd when local organizations submitted photos and stories of their most prized historic properties. From these applications, the National Trust selected 100 organizations to advocate for a chance to win one of three grant awards. Each organization has been allowed a webpage at where they can voice their story, make connections, and rally support. The public voting process began June 1 and will continue through June 30, with each person allowed only one vote.

Here are the direct links to the PreservationNation web pages for these two sites:

Fergus Falls Regional Treatment Center

Jackson Street Water Tower

The Fergus Falls RTC is a notable example of a Kirkbride building, the nationally prominent design model for state-sponsored mental health facilities. Today, Kirkbrides are rapidly vanishing symbols of American architecture. The city of Fergus Falls may use state bonding funds to demolish the building if a reuse is not found soon.

Far too many of Minnesota's historic water towers have vanished from the landscape. The Elk River Heritage Preservation Commission is doing its best to make sure that the Jackson Street Water Tower, which is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places, does not also disappear.

More information about these properties is available on PAM's website:

Fergus Falls RTC 10 Most info

Jackson Street Water Tower 10 Most info

About the National Trust for Historic Preservation

The National Trust for Historic Preservation is a private, nonprofit membership organization dedicated to saving historic places and revitalizing America's communities. They provide leadership education, advocacy and resources to save diverse historic places and revitalize communities. The Trust designed the This Place Matters campaign to encourage grassroots advocacy throughout the nation. Originally founded with a few single photographs, the This Place Matters forum currently hosts thousands of carefully and creatively thought out photos. Anyone can upload a photo, map a location, and share with others a place that really means something to them. It is all about raising awareness and creating a community for historic preservation to thrive.

About the Preservation Alliance of Minnesota

The Preservation Alliance of Minnesota (PAM) is a statewide, private, nonprofit organization advocating for the preservation of Minnesota's historic resources. PAM was incorporated as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit in 1981 by Minnesota citizens concerned about the future of the state's architectural and cultural landmarks, and has grown into a network representing thousands of voices across the state. Beyond our membership, we collaborate and partner with other organizations and agencies from the national to the local level.