FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
September 9, 2021
City of Kingston
Receives Grant for Wilbur and Ponckhockie Neighborhoods Survey
KINGSTON, NY – Mayor Steven T. Noble is
pleased to announce that the City of Kingston was awarded $27,016 from the
Office of Parks, Recreation and Historic Preservation to support a survey of
the Wilbur and Ponckhockie neighborhoods.
The Historic Preservation Fund’s Certified
Local Government (CLG) Grant Award will help fund the surveys of the Wilbur and
Ponckhockie neighborhoods, which will advance the City’s historic preservation
efforts and will result in the determination of eligibility of new potential
local landmarks as well as the State/National Register designations.
“The project will focus on two overlooked
neighborhoods, both of which occupied major roles in Kingston’s history,” said
Mayor Noble. “This work also aligns with the Kingston 2025 Comprehensive Plan
to further preservation of the City's historic and architectural resources,
while making our historic designations more inclusive.”
The City’s Planning Department will
oversee this initiative in conjunction with the cooperation of the Friends of
Historic Kingston and members of the Historic Landmarks Preservation
Commission. This research will build upon previous individual National and
State Historic Registry listings, studies already conducted, and the Historic
Buildings Inventory identified in the 1987 Urban Cultural Park Plan.
“Both Wilbur and Ponckhockie are keys to
Kingston's maritime and industrial past,” said Mark Grunblatt, Chair of the
Historic Landmark Preservation Commission. “The brickyards drew immigrant
laborers to Ponckhockie, and their work remains obvious from Kingston Point
Beach. The caves below today's industrial park once grew mushrooms for market.
Wilbur's quarrymen gave Kingston its bluestone curbs and sidewalks, while kilns
in the Wilbur hillsides produced cement for New York City's streets and
buildings. Prior surveys failed to explore these important neighborhoods. This
grant will allow the City to show a fuller breadth of Kingston's history and
bring Ponckhockie and Wilbur new notoriety.”
At the conclusion of this research, the
project team will be creating a digitized inventory of historic assets in, and
for, Wilbur and Ponckhockie, along with a detailed written history to be
included in a later comprehensive city-wide preservation plan. This information
will also be used to nominate eligible properties located in these two
neighborhoods to the National/State Registry.
In 2013, the City of Kingston received
funding from a CLG grant to conduct a survey of historic resources in Midtown.
The purpose of the study was to identify historic resources in Midtown, to make
recommendations for their preservation, and to recommend how they can best be
used as resources for economic and community development. The survey was
completed in 2014 and can be found here.