Historic Boarding House Preserved At Portland, Tn.

Thursday, June 16, 2016
Before and after restoration
Before and after restoration
The Tennessee Preservation Trust (TPT) celebrated the exceptional preservation efforts of the city of Portland, Tn.,  for the restoration of the historic Moye Green House as part of their Preservation50 in Tennessee campaign.
 
Preservation50 in Tennessee is part of a nationwide effort to commemorate the 50th anniversary of the National Historic Preservation Act (NHPA).
The advocacy campaign aims to celebrate, learn from, and leverage the NHPA's first five decades to assure historic preservation's vibrant future.
 
The NHPA created programs like the National Register of Historic Places, provided for local and state preservation programs like the Tennessee Historical Commission, and established the Historic Preservation Fund from which the state is able to provide grant funding for historic preservation projects including the restoration of the historic Moye Green House.
 
The 19th century boarding house is the oldest house in Portland and is listed on the National Register of Historic Places.
It was placed on the Tennessee Preservation Trust's "Ten in Tenn" list of the state's most endangered historic properties in 2013. The annual Ten in Tenn program is the TPT's strongest advocacy tool as the statewide nonprofit for historic preservation and provides much needed public awareness for Tennessee's most threatened historic places.
 
The historic Moye Green House was added to the annual list for fear it would be lost due to deterioration and vandalism. Natural elements and wood rot threatened its structural integrity.
Following its listing, the community of Portland rallied to save the historic building with the help of Denise Geminden, Portland's Director of Economic Development, and the Portland Preservation Foundation. As a result, the city secured much needed funding for restoration work and volunteered many hours of labor to bring the boarding house back to life.
 
The Tennessee Historical Commission awarded the city $12,000 in bricks and mortar grant funding and hopes to continue supporting preservation efforts of the historic house. The Tennessee Department of Economic and Community Development (TN ECD) named Portland as one of six "Tennessee Downtowns" communities in 2013, which helped the community organize its many resources toward saving the Moye Green and other places that matter. TN ECD has awarded Portland grants of $15,000 and $25,000 toward the historic Moye Green House, the Temple Theatre and others, and Portland's Mayor Ken Wilbur, Denise Geminden, head of the Portland Preservation Foundation Billie Geminden, and others have obviously used these funds wisely.
 
Additionally, Portland's own downtown committee provided a grant for restoration work through their Downtown Grant Program.
ogether, these efforts have provided for the stabilization of the foundation, restoration of windows and doors, straightening of the front porch rack, custom replacement of porch roof boards, replacement of the Folk Victorian ornamentation, and more.
 
Much of this work was done through volunteer labor. This included the expert craftsmanship of Harris Green and Curt Chaffin of the local Orlinda Furniture Co. to recreate missing ornamental brackets and turned columns surrounding the front porch. Green is a descendent of the home's namesake.
 
Officials said, "The Moye Green project is an excellent example of people working together for the common cause of saving a structure that is important to the history of the community.  Everyone involved is to be commended for their inspirational work."
 
The Tennessee Preservation Trust is delighted to remove the property from its listing as most endangered and presented Denise Geminden, on behalf of the city, with a Ten in Tenn "SAVED" award. Since 2001, over half the properties placed on the annual Ten in Tenn list have been saved.

The historic Moye Green House is set to open in the fall as the city's visitor center.


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