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  • 16 Feb 2017 1:09 PM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    The winter 2017 NPT Newsletter is hot off the press ...

    ... and available in cool, easy-to-read PDF digital format here.

    In this issue:

    - City's draft Master Plan "infill map" prompts NPT response --- and city clarification ... and forthcoming revision.

    - Join us at the Pike-Cushing-Bachman House for NPT's Annual Meeting and Members Party Sunday, February 26, 2017, 3:00-5:30 p.m. The meeting/party features an update on NPT education and advocacy efforts --- and light refreshments --- all in the ambiance of the 1810 Pike-Cushing-Bachman House at 63 High Street.

    - "Cooking in Beehive Ovens" March 4, 2017, 3:30-5:30 p.m. --- Open for registration! Back by popular demand, historic fireplace expert Richard Irons will give an overview of brick oven construction, explain how the oven works, and give a real-time cooking demonstration --- with hands-on participation.

    - Preservation Award nominations due by March 15, 2017. Go straight to the Nomination Form. Here's an election you can feel good about --- Send in your nominations for NPT's 2017 Preservation Awards.

    - Preservation Week 2017set for May 16-21, 2017. This year's theme: "Newburyport in the Historic American Buildings Survey."

    - NPT nominated as a "Trailblazer" by Essex National Heritage Area. Now you can vote NPT to the top of the heap.

    Happy reading ... and feel free to share your newsletter with interested folks and prospective NPT members.

  • 16 Feb 2017 11:33 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    NPT's "Do It Ye Self" Series:
    "Cooking in Beehive Ovens" is Sat., March 4, 2017

    Back by popular demand is historic fireplace expert Richard Irons for another session of “Cooking in Beehive Ovens” on Saturday, March 4, 2016, 3:30-5:30 p.m. at 6 Independent Street, Newburyport.

    Prompt registration is advised via the Events page of NPT’s website,, as last year’s beehive oven session, part of NPT’s popular “Do It Ye Self” series, sold out in less than 24 hours. Registration is just $20 per person for members. ($30 per for non-members.) Registration is limited to 18 attendees.

    The program includes an overview of brick oven construction; the evolution of beehive ovens in New England; an explanation of how the oven works; and a real-time cooking demonstration – with hands-on participation.

    This month's venue, a restored Georgian home (c. 1725) with a fireplace and oven just right for the presentation, was generously volunteered for the event by the owners, supportive members of the Newburyport Preservation Trust.

    The presenter, restoration mason Richard Irons of Limerick, Maine, has worked on historic houses and museum properties in the northeast U.S. for more than 40 years.

    For additional information, contact "Do It Ye Self" program coordinator Matt Blanchette at 978-697-5135 or by email at

  • 15 Feb 2017 10:51 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    Join us at the Pike-Cushing-Bachman House (1810)
    for Annual Meeting & Party on Sunday, Feb. 26, 2017

    Join fellow Newburyport Preservation Trust members at NPT's Annual Meeting & Members Party on Sunday, February 26, 2017 at the Pike-Cushing-Backman House, 63 High Street, Newburyport, 3:00 - 5:30 p.m.

    The Annual Meeting & Members Party features an update on NPT education and advocacy efforts during the past year --- and light refreshments.

    Thanks to the generous spirit of an NPT member homeowner, NPT Annual Meeting & Members Party attendees can enjoy the ambiance of the Pike-Cushing-Bachman House. Built in 1810 by Richard Pike, it was the home of Newburyport's noted local and national public servant Caleb Cushing (1800-1879) from 1848 to his death. The home was owned by mill owner Solomon Bachman (1827-1898) and his heirs from 1881 to 1945.

  • 15 Feb 2017 10:11 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    Nominations Open for 2017 Preservation Awards

    The Newburyport Preservation Trust is accepting nominations for the 2017 Preservation Awards to be presented in conjunction with Preservation Week May 17-21, 2017.

    Simply download and print the nomination form and awards criteria from the Preservation Week page at the NPT website (Note: You're already here!), fill out the form(s) with your nomination(s), and return by old-school postal mail to the Newburyport Preservation Trust at P. O. Box 184, Newburyport, MA 01950. Nominations must be received by March 15, 2017.

    Awards will be presented in seven categories: stewardship, exterior restoration, interior restoration, sensitive addition to a historic building, historic landscape restoration, historically sensitive contractor/builder, and sustainable historic structure.

    Since 2007 the Newburyport Preservation Trust has celebrated preservation efforts through its annual Preservation Awards. The goal is to support, promote, celebrate, and showcase preservation – and raise awareness of the value and unique historic character of our community.

    So put on your "thinking caps" and submit your worthy preservation award nominations, then clear your calendar for Preservation Week and the awards presentations on Sunday, May 21, 2017.

  • 15 Feb 2017 9:39 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    Draft master plan "infill map"
    prompts NPT response ... and city clarification

    When the City of Newburyport's draft Master Plan was posted on the city's website for public comment in December 2016, the Generalized Future Land Use Map deep within the 232-page document was not expected to generate much attention. But apparently the map sent an unclear message about the sensitive issue of creeping "infill" development. View the map here.

    But by the end of the public comment period (January 31, 2017) the land use map prompted not only public response, but an NPT member alert followed by newspaper coverage, a subsequent editorial, letters to the editor, social media postings, and NPT member letters to the city that questioned the
    "Residential Infill Potential" areas on the map. Irritating the raw nerves was the city's apparent endorsement of infill in already-packed neighborhoods in the National Register Historic District.

    The Newburyport Preservation Trust board of directors collaborated to craft a five-page point-by-point response to the infill designation and other preservation-related issues in the draft Master Plan. The NPT response was submitted to the city's Planning Office on January 26. Read NPT's commentary here.

    The city's Master Plan draft, with the map, is on the city website, master-plan-steering-committee

    NPT’s comments led to a meeting on February 3 with Mayor Donna Holaday and Planning Director Andrew Port. Port explained that the "Residential Infill Potential" areas on the map were merely to indicate the situation as it is today, given current zoning regulations. According to the Planning Dept. the map was not intended to be a welcoming fanfare for developers to shoehorn more homes into neighborhoods where some of the houses are already just two feet apart. The Mayor and the Planning Department said a suspended and long-overdue rewrite of the zoning code will promptly resume, section-by-section according to urgency, addressing infill and loss of historic structures as a priority.

    Besides infill, other topics addressed in NPT's response included preventing the degradation of historic neighborhoods, architectural design standards-and-review, affordable housing, and the need for a zoning enforcement officer that works independent of the Building Department.

    According to the Planning Dept., a revised draft of the Master Plan – with a new map – is forthcoming. Thanks to the questions raised in the first map, NPT and the city engaged in a valuable discussion on multiple preservation-related topics.

  • 03 Nov 2016 8:04 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    NPT's "Do It Ye Self" Series:
    "Think Like a Chair" Workshop is Sat., Nov. 19, 2016

    Newburyport’s own veritable “chair-man,” Henry Fox, shares his 30 years of wisdom on chair design and construction on Saturday, November 19, at 1 p.m. at Fox Brothers Furniture Studio, 39 Liberty Street, Newburyport. The event is the latest in the Newburyport Preservation Trust's "Do It Ye Self" series.

    The two-hour program, presented as a give-and-take discussion about the design considerations that go into making a chair, will touch on specific chair designs, the maker's own influences, and other issues unique to chairs. Questions for the presenter are welcome. Whether you are a furniture aficionado or just a "homer-with-a-hammer," at this workshop the Newburyport Preservation Trust invites you to pull up a seat and “Think Like a Chair.” 

    Henry Fox has worked at his studio in a re-purposed auto dealership in Newburyport for more than 15 years. His furniture graces homes and public spaces from coast-to-coast, and has been exhibited at the Smithsonian Craft Show, the Philadelphia Museum of Art, the American Craft Museum, and DeCordova Museum. His furniture conceptions are described as "an alignment of light, tension, weight, and the unexpected."

    Cost for the limited registration program is $15 for Newburyport Preservation Trust members, and $20 for non-members. Register online at the "Events" page of the Newburyport Preservation Trust website ( For additional information, contact "Do It Ye Self" program coordinator Matt Blanchette at 978-697-5135 or by email at

  • 28 Oct 2016 7:52 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    Fall 2016 NPT Newsletter now online

    The fall 2016 newsletter of the Newburyport Preservation Trust has been e-mailed to members, and is also available to read online here. In this issue, the lead article is a report on a former Newburyporter's blog post --- "Why are You Gutting That House" --- that resonated with readers in Newburyport and far beyond. Also in this issue is an update on the NPT Historic House Plaque Program, and a report on the first in a fund-raising series, "Serving Up Storied Homes."

    In this issue:

    - Former Newburyporter's blog post gets national response

    - NPT gift membership is timely for the holidays

    - Historic House Plaque Program update

    - "Serving Up Storied Homes" fund-raiser report

    - "Words Not Necessary" feature

  • 10 Jul 2016 10:48 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)
    Wipe off the frown ... and replace it with "Amazon Smile"!

    Do you buy stuff on Of course you do! Even if you don't shop there for all your thingamajigs and watchamacallits, you surely go to for access to scholarly tomes, obscure literature, and hard-to-find recordings.

    Now, when you shop at, make sure to sign in through the "Amazon Smile" program, and a whopping 0.5% of your purchase price will go to support the Newburyport Preservation Trust! Don't laugh --- it all adds up! So the next time you browse, wipe off the frown and click on this link to Amazon Smile.

    Better yet, copy the link to your desktop for even faster and easier access!

  • 25 Jun 2016 8:22 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    "Researching Your Historic Home" available online

    The June 25 presentation at the Newburyport Public Library, "Researching Your Historic Home," is now viewable and downloadable here in PDF format. Presenter Linda Tulley, a professional house researcher, made the 29-slide PDF file available to the Newburyport Preservation Trust as part of its Do It Ye Self series. The Newburyport Presevation Trust is among the sponsors of the Yankee Homecoming week event, "If This House Could Talk" (July 30 - August 6), and the house research presentation can help participants discover interesting facts for their homes to mutter, shout, or jabber (figuratively, of course) during that event.

  • 13 May 2016 11:29 AM | Web Wrangler (Administrator)

    The presentation graphics of "Newburyport's Architecture of Faith," the preview program of Preservation Week 2016, are now online for close-up study. Also in downloadable PDF format is the handout for the program presented Tuesday, May 10, at St. Anna's Chapel of St. Paul's Church.

    Click on the following link for the informative program handout.

    Click on the following link for the presentation graphics. (Despite file compression, the number of photos makes this a large file.)

    The program encompassed the roots of New England church architecture, from the pagan rockpiles and "heathen halls" of Celtic cultures in northern Europe, to the formalized styles of later centuries, to the austere Puritan meeting houses, down to the American amalgam of styles still present today in the churches that contribute to Newburyport's atmosphere and sense-of-place. The presentation graphics include photos of the city's churches: old and new, past and present, defunct and re-purposed. The program was presented by museum/history professional R.W. Bacon.

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