National Trust For Historic Preservation Announces ‘Most Endangered Places’ List

Swimmers leave the water after the early morning swim in Walden Pond.
Swimmers leave the water after the early morning swim in Walden Pond. –TOM LANDERS/ GLOBE

Yesterday, the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced the 2014 list of the 11 Most Endangered Historic Places to “raise awareness about the threats facing some of the nation’s greatest treasures.’’

Though this year there were no sites in Massachusetts, since 1988 there have been 11 total listings in the state. Here’s a list of the places that have, at one time, been listed from Massachusetts:

1. Ames Shovel Shops, 2009: An eight acre industrial park, “so scenic it looks more like a New England college campus than an industrial village,’’ was threatened by new owners who wanted to tear down some of the historic buildings. According to Wicked Local in 2012, a plan was created to save the shovel works building, while also building new housing developments.


2. Cape Cod, 1994: Cape Cod and the site of the pilgrim’s first landing in the New World, were threatened by development. The Cape is protected by the Cape Cod Commission.

3. Gay Head Lighthouse, 2013: This Mass. lighthouse was the first lighthouse built on Martha’s Vineyard and is in danger of “toppling over the edge of the Gay Head Cliffs,’’ because of erosion. Its destiny has yet to be determined, but there are efforts to save it.

4. H.H. Richardson House, 2007: This Brookline home, threatened by development and deterioration, was once the home of the man who created Boston’s Trinity Church. Portions of the house were protected in July 2013 in partnership with the Trustees of Reservations.

5. Historic Boston Theaters, 1995: The theaters on Washington Street fell to deterioration and neglect in the 90s. In 2011, the theaters won the National Historic Preservationaward for the restoration done.

6. Historic Catholic Churches of Greater Boston, 2005: In 2004, many of these properties closed and disposed of churches because of “poor public policy,’’ and many of them have been demolished, some were rehabilitated for new uses, while some are still “pending legal action.’’

7. Malcom X – Ella Little-Collins House, 2012: The last surviving boyhood home of Malcom X had a lack of funding to rehabilitate the property. The National Trust last said that the goal was to help Historic Bostonraise $1.4 million to rehabilitate the property. Donationsare still being accepted to save it.


8. Minute Man National Historical Park and Environs, 2003: With over 1,000 sites on the National Register of Historic Places in the area around the Park, this site was put on the list for development issues and poor public policy.

9. Nantucket, 2000: One of Massachusetts’s iconic islands, with late 19th and early 20th century resort-era architecture, faced development issues.

10. Old Deerfield Historic District, 1988, 1989: A preserved old village with 18th century original architecture faced development issues in the late 1980s.

11. Walden Pond and Woods, 1990, 1991: At the time, Walden Pond, Henry David Thoreau’s retreat, faced development and poor public policy issues.

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