SHINE is a look backward from the present to Salem's 1860 charter. In each year we have four sections: glimpses of what was happening around the world, a special event in Salem, what you see when you visit that site today, and other Salem events of interest that year.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Historic Preservation: Gone Missing

This 1920s bungalow at 440 Mission Street SE was demolished this week leaving a tangle of weathered lumber, shattered household debris and discarded foliage. Three of its neighbors along Liberty Street are also scheduled to be razed. Within the Gaiety Hill/Bush's Pasture Park Historic Residential District, their condition had deteriorated in the last several years because of no maintenance or occupancy. Finally, the Community Development Department of the City of Salem condemned all four for reasons of public safety. Historic houses like these, recognized on the US Department of Interior National Register of Historic Places, are community assets: they establish the character of our neighborhoods. All along the neighboring Liberty Street, there are many examples of residential historic preservation as either living or work space. Unfortunately, these were not valued in the same way.