midterm exam2 - Historical Preservation MID TERM EXAM 2...

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10/16/2008 Historical Preservation MID TERM EXAM 2. Once historic preservation started to become a popular topic, the historic house museum as well as outdoor/living history museums soon became very popular areas of historic preservation. However, although these historic sites were greatly admired, they were difficult to maintain and not easily interpreted. The historic house museum is one whose structure is of architectural or historical significance and whose interpretation relates directly to the buildings architecture, furnishing or history (Murtagh). A classic example of a historic house museum is the Shifferstadt Architecture Museum located in Abscon, NJ. Built in 1857, clearly this is a building that must have taken a great deal of work to restore. One of the major problems that come with the house museum is its adaptive use. The house is restored and opened to the public, seen only as it is now and not how it originally was used. Therefore it was difficult for a visitor to really picture what it was like to live there, because they are simply just looking at a restored house with restored artifacts. There is a big difference in seeing how someone really lived, and seeing basically a set design. Oftentimes this small problem also led to house museums eventually losing their influential constituency. The Historic House museum is also loosely defined as 3-D historical document that exists to teach a history lesson. These historic house museums, public or private usually stand as non-profit and are owned by the town or local governing system. Recently I visited the Louisville Historic House Museum and was able to have first hand experience in observing these characteristics of the house museum. Constructed around 1904, the
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