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on March 13, 2009
Anyone who seeks knowledge from a text book expects a structured course of solid detail. But sometimes the organization of a course can begin as a meandering stream only to become an untamable river. Given how broad historic preservation can be, thankfully the 2009 edition of Historic Preservation by Norman Tyler flows so simply in presentation and is a pleasure to swim through.

Mr. Tyler's introduction to historic preservation is a quick review of the earliest motivations to preserve. Presenting the classically conflicted ideas of John Ruskin and Viollet le Duc prepares the reader to digest some of the more nonchalant approaches to preservation. Once surveyed, Tyler quickly turns to equipping us with all the content and contextual knowledge to recognize the depths of the built environment. A chronological explanation of the major architectural styles along with simple line illustrations helps to focus the reader's interest in a concise way. This historic architectural reference is integrated directly into the ethical basis of why and the legal backbone of how preservation legislation has evolved. Thus, the important emphasis on an asset's significance and integrity is well examined and driven home

Once past the shallows of basic knowledge Mr. Tyler circles back to examine the intricate sees of historic individual and district designations. This expands into the reasoning behind municipal land use law and it's application. It is now time to load up on the tools and techniques of modern preservation. Simplifying the different approaches in rehabilitation, restoration conservation and reconstruction leads seamlessly to all of the fun parts of research and documentation of assets. The author's detail on basic building systems is masterful. Throughout these sections is a careful balance struck between such diverse areas as describing a Historic Structure Reports and addressing life / safety issues.

But without an economically secure future how can a structure survive the rapids of change? Mr. Tyler's answer begins with a fresh look at Donovan Rypkema's landmark report on the benefits of preservation. Realistic considerations of a structure's financial viability lead into the surprisingly clear waters of easements, tax considerations, and financial analysis. Even the pro forma spread sheet example invites a try.

Since a reader has come this far, the next step is advocacy, fundraising and assistance with local government and municipal planning integration. Preservation planning through Downtown Management, Master Plan review and zoning are explained in a general way so to invite a local conception. This 2009 edition also reflects an up to date, smart discussion on sustainability, greenability and active heritage tourism.

Historic Preservation is one of the finest guides to the dynamic study of modern preservation. It should be considered for any course work or library collection on the subject.

Billy Neumann author of Rutherford: A Brief History
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on May 16, 2009
Libraries strong in architecture and historic preservation will find the second updated edition of HISTORIC PRESERVATION a winner. It traces what began as a grassroots movement and evolved into a 'green' architecture and sustainability movement today, using layman's language to trace the philosophy of preservation and introducing the ideas for students, preservationists and community leaders alike. College-level libraries will find it a winner.
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on March 13, 2012
This book provides a very solid overview of the historic preservation movement in American. It has chapters on architectural styles, the foundation and history of preservation, the legal process of listing sites, the Register of Historic Sites, the differences between historic districts, landmarks, and areas, and preservation economics and planning. The book covers the long term issues typically associated with preserving historic buildings and it also highlights the uphill battle that has been fought by preservationists through the years. It is full of sketches and images of important historic sites and to show differences in architectural styles. The complex topics of restoration, renovation, and conservation are explained in detail. A great introduction to an important topic.
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on February 18, 2016
I got this book as a requirement for my Architecture and Historical Preservation class.
I actually enjoy learning and reading about this topic as it gives you a different perspective on what is around you.
This book gives you examples of types of architecture styles, gives you pictures for examples and touches base on sustainability topics etc!
Even if your not taking a class in this subject it is very interesting to learn and will pertain to anyone.
The book is a nice small size - not like a heavy textbook.
The price is absolutely reasonable.
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on April 11, 2013
loaded with information about historical preservation. nicely done up and well written. a very good read!! highly recommended. a must for anyone on a historical committee whether by appointment or choice.
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on May 20, 2014
When I had to read this book for class, I thought it boring and obvious. However, I find myself quoting it in other classes and in other books. It makes sense. It is very pro-preservation, and completely biased, which is another reason that I didn't like it at first. However, the term "edutainment" has stuck with me as I delve more into historic sites. I can see the relevance of the term, and its implication - both good and bad. It also tells us what the National Park does, and doesn't do, which I also found helpful. I just say be prepared for blah blah when you read, then go back over it. I think that you will find useful information if you can get past the officialism of it.
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on October 5, 2011
Preservation is always a difficult field to get into; there is a lot to learn and so many sources to turn to. Look no further. This book is a great starter introduction to the preservation field. It covers the basics like: How did preservation get started? What is the legal basis? What tools are available to me today? Once it lays the groundwork, it dives into things like Section 106 reviews and Historic Districts, Commercial Main Street Programs and much much more! A great book for both students and advocates alike! I will reccomend to everyone.
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on October 2, 2013
I received this book this afternoon. It's good and I like it very much!
The 2nd version is really much better than the 1st version!
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on September 13, 2010
This is a great book to begin the study of historical preservation in America. My only criticism is there could be more color photography to help the authors illustrate their examples, the different architectural styles and preservation sites. Well written and pragmatic, good starter book for the would-be preservationist with many, many suggestions on further reading. I highly recommend this book.
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on September 8, 2014
I needed this book for my Historic Preservation class and so far from what I've read it's a great book! It's also helpful that it's extremely easy to read even with out any knowledge of the subject.
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