This bulletin offers guidance to Federal
Historic Preservation Offices, Certified
Local Governments, preservation professionals, and interested individuals
in the successful preparation of nominations to the National Register
of Historic Places and requests for determinations of eligibility for
historic sites or districts known as rural historic landscapes. In recent
years, there has been a growing interest among preservationists in recognizing
and protecting the cultural values that centuries of land use and occupation
have embodied in rural America. Understanding the forces that have shaped
rural properties, interpreting their historical importance, and planning
for their protection are current challenges in historic preservation.
This bulletin responds to the many questions that have risen out of
efforts to apply the National Register criteria to rural properties
possessing significant land areas.
Kehilbeck Farmstead in Cass County, Nebraska, reflects the standard
historic property formed by the United States rectangular land
survey. The farm's spatial organization indicates the separation
of agricultural activities and many of the improvements, functional
and aesthetic, that midwestern farms underwent in the late 19th
and early 20th centuries. Landscape features include a formal
alleé and curved entry drive, windbreaks of Eastern Red
Cedar and Austrian Pine, a farmyard with orchards and vegetable
gardens, pastures with livestock enclosures, and outlying fields
of corn, hay or oats. (Nebraska State Historical Society)
This bulletin defines a rural historic landscape, describes its characteristics,
and suggests practical methods for survey and research. It also closely
examines how the National Register criteria can be applied, significance
and integrity evaluated, and boundaries drawn for rural properties having
significant acreage. Finally, the bulletin discusses the information
needed to register these properties in the National Register.
The bulletin is organized under three general headings: identification,
evaluation, and registration. It puts forth a practical approach,
not a complete or rigid methodology, that can be applied within a
preservation planning framework to both the general development of
historic contexts and the evaluation of properties within rural areas.
It should be used with National Register
Bulletin: Guidelines for Local Surveys: A Basis for Preservation
Planning and National Register
Bulletin: How to Complete the National Register Registration Form,
which provide general guidance on developing historic context, conducting
surveys, and completing National Register forms.