Two Local Sites on List of Va. Endangered Properties

Old Albemarle County Jail and the Morrisena property are two sites on Preservation Virginia

Courtesy The Hook

May 17, 2010

Preservation Virginia's annual list of endangered historic sites and properties includes several schools that educated African-American children during Virginia's segregated past and all of the state's family cemeteries.

The list released on Monday is the sixth edition compiled by Preservation Virginia, the statewide nonprofit historic preservation group founded in 1889.

According to Preservation Virginia, the places, buildings and architectural sites "face imminent or sustained threats to their integrity and in some cases their very survival."

The group's executive director, Elizabeth Kostelny, said the list is based on statewide nominations that are narrowed down to 10 by preservationists and architects.

Kostelny said previous lists have been effective in leading local preservation efforts. She cited Mill Mountain in Roanoke and Fort Monroe in Hampton, which the Army is leaving in 2011.

The local 2010 entries are:

- Old Albemarle County Jail, Charlottesville, portions of which date to the 1870s. "It has been little altered from the time it was constructed," according to a summary. Local preservation officials are attempting to preserve the property and use the complex for a museum.

- Historic family cemeteries across Virginia, many of which are threatened by development and neglect. "The graves help to perpetuate the memories of the deceased and the remains of the people buried there (and) should be treated with the utmost respect and dignity," Preservation Virginia wrote.

- Morrisena, Albemarle County, dating to 1748, the property has been farmed continuously for nine generations and remains in the same family since the original land grant was issue. Also has one of the oldest houses in county, though threatened by theft and vandalism.


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