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Center for Cultural Landscape Preservation

The ESF Center for Cultural Landscape Preservation, based in the Department of Landscape Architecture, supports the education of landscape architects and students in related professions as best stewards of the cultural environment. The Center brings together interdisciplinary expertise from across ESF, the National Park Service, state parks, and other partners to address challenges in preserving our landscape heritage.


  • Acadia National Park, Maine: Students of the NPS-ESF Cultural Landscape Preservation Summer Field School, 2012. The students inventoried the landscape of Acadia's historic carriage road system while learning about how the park manages its historic landscape resources.


  • Harriet Tubman National Historical Park, Auburn, New York: CCLP Summer intern Claire Fisher inventorying existing conditions 2016. The inventory data is being used to identify historic landscape features and develop maps for a cultural landscape report.


  • Marin Headlands, Golden Gate National Recreation Area, Sausalito, California: CCLP Intern Laura Roberts with ESF and NPS staff, 2009. Laura assisted with site inventory and mapping as part of a cultural landscape report.


  • Gettysburg National Cemetery, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania: Simulation by CCLP research assistant Chris Anderson of proposed treatment for the main entrance gates, 2016. The simulation illustrated one of the treatment recommendations in a cultural landscape report for the cemetery.


  • Gettysburg National Cemetery, Gettysburg, Pennsylvania: Simulation by CCLP research assistant Chris Anderson of proposed treatment for the main entrance gates, 2016. The simulation illustrated one of the treatment recommendations in a cultural landscape report for the cemetery.


  • Harriet Tubman National Historical Park, Auburn, New York: Natural resource assessment with Dr. james Gibbs of the SUNY ESF Department of Environmental and Forest Biology, 2016. The assessment was undertaken as part of existing conditions documentation for a cultural landscape report being developed through the CCLP.


  • Eleanor Roosevelt National Historic Site, Hyde Park, New York: Students, ESF faculty, and NPS staff participants in final review of cultural landscape preservation studio at ESF, 2008. The studio produced design concepts for the restoration and rehabilitation of the historic landscape as part of a cultural landscape report.


  • Chancellorsville Battle eld, Spotsylvania, Virginia: ESF students in a landscape architecture studio being introduced to the site by NPS park staff, 2015. The studio produced design concepts for the historic battle held as part of treatment recommendations for a cultural landscape report prepared through the CCLP.


  • Erie Canal National Heritage Corridor, Port Byron, New York: CCLP Research assistant Nate Ogdahl on a site visit with ESF and Canal Society of New York State staff, 2010. Nate produced a digital model of proposed site improvements as part of a research project for the Canal Society completed through the CCLP.


  • Muir Woods National Monument, Mill Valley, California: CCLP Research Assistant Haichao Wang with CCLP Co-Director John Auwaerter and NPS Olmsted Center Director Bob Page, 2014. The inventory done that summer was part of a cultural landscape report developed through the CCLP.


  • Poplar Grove National Cemetery, Petersburg, Virginia showing reconstruction in 2016 of the historic upright Civil War headstones that were laid flat by the NPS in the 1930s. This recommendation was part of a comprehensive treatment plan for rehabilitation of the historic Civil War-era national cemetery produced by the CCLP through a cultural landscape report completed in 2009.


  • Poplar Grove National Cemetery, Petersburg, Virginia showing reconstruction in 2016 of the historic upright Civil War headstones that were laid flat by the NPS in the 1930s. This recommendation was part of a comprehensive treatment plan for rehabilitation of the historic Civil War-era national cemetery produced by the CCLP through a cultural landscape report completed in 2009.

News and Updates

Spring 2017

Harriet Tubman National Historical Park

The CCLP is continuing its research on the historic landscape of Harriet Tubman National Historical Park in Auburn, New York, newly designated as a unit of the National Park System on January 11, 2017. Tubman, the famous abolitionist known as the Moses of her People for her work on the Underground Railroad and soon to appear on the $20 bill, lived in Auburn from ca. 1859 until her death in 1913. After the Civil War, she continued her care for aged African-Americans through her home and church. The AME Zion Church has owned the site since Tubman's death, and for the past three decades, it has been opened to the public by Harriet Tubman Home, Inc.

During the spring 2017 semester, a landscape architecture studio taught by SUNY ESF landscape architecture faculty Richard Hawks and Christine Capella Peters will be exploring design and planning issues related to adaptation of the Tubman landscape into a national park. Students will address issues such as restoration of historic field patterns, visitor services and access, and interpretation, as well as how to connect the Tubman home site and Tubman's church about a mile away. A conservation biology class taught by SUNY ESF instructor Sam Quinn will be addressing issues of natural resource management in collaboration with the landscape architecture studio. Watch for results of these classes to be posted here and on the CCLP Facebook page in May.


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