16 New York Historic Sites Awarded Preservation Grants

American Express and National Trust for Historic Preservation Distribute $3 Million Through Partners in Preservation Program

Today, American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation announced an additional 16 historic places that received preservation grants as part of the Partners in Preservation competition in New York City, the first-ever citywide effort powered by social media. Forty sites from all five boroughs competed for public votes this spring for preservation funding from American Express. With today’s announcement, American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation will have infused $3 million in funding to preserve historic buildings throughout New York.

A Partners in Preservation advisory committee of community and preservation leaders met yesterday to determine how the remaining funds would be allocated after the four popular winners were announced on May 22. The popular vote winners were Brooklyn Public Library, Congregation Beth Elohim, New York Botanical Gardens, and Bartow-Pell Mansion Museum. 

“This program is designed to encourage community support for preservation and have the public rally behind their favorite historic places to help us determine where these funds are needed,” said Timothy J. McClimon, President of the American Express Foundation. “The sites’ dedication and persistence paid off and should prove to have a lasting effect on these historic places.”

“By spotlighting the benefits of historic preservation and the need for funding to keep historic sites vibrant, this program has galvanized New Yorkers to recognize the treasures in their communities,” said Stephanie Meeks, President, the National Trust for Historic Preservation. “The long term benefits of the program are evident with the increased engagement of local preservationists by the historic sites through their web pages and social media channels, coupled with an increase in visitors to the sites themselves.”

The 16 organizations that received grants were: 

  • Brown Memorial Baptist Church, Brooklyn: $200,000 to complete restoration of Transept’s Roberts Memorial Tiffany Pilgrim window frame and glass.
  • Henry Street Settlement, Manhattan: $175,000 to develop an achievable, measurable and replicable model for achieving sustainability in historic structures.
  • Lower East Side Tenement Museum, Manhattan: $170,000 to arrest the active deterioration and loss of historic fabric within three of the "instructive ruin" apartments.
  • Apollo Theater, Manhattan: $150,000 to restore specific decorative elements in the historic auditorium.
  • Louis Armstrong House Museum, Queens: $150,000 to repair exteriors including patio woodwork and interiors such as bathroom tiles.
  • Woodlawn Cemetery, Bronx: $150,000 to conserve exterior of mausoleum including the resetting of uneven terrace stones and preservation of doors.
  • Tug Pegasus & Waterfront Museum Barge, Brooklyn: $140,000 total with $90,000 to repair the main deck of Tug Pegasus and $50,000 to permanently preserve markings and historical "graffiti" on barge walls of the LV 79.  
  • St. Mark’s Church in the Bowery, Manhattan: $135,000 to replace exteriors including the portico floor, roof, and front arches.
  • Alice Austen House Museum, Staten Island: $120,000 to repaint exterior and repair the roof’s decorative woodwork, shutters and chimney, and build a new handicap access door.
  • Flushing Town Hall, Queens: $100,000 to restore windows and roofing, coinciding with the 150th anniversary celebration of the building.
  • Staten Island Museum at Snug Harbor, Staten Island: $100,000 to renovate and reset the exterior stairs and conserve the cast iron staircase in Building A, which is being transformed into a new home for the Museum.
  • Queens County Farm Museum, Queens: $80,000 to restore the farm’s exteriors by replacing the roof, windows, clapboards and exterior wall shingles.
  • Federal Hall National Memorial, Manhattan: $75,000 to repair, clean and protectively coat the statue of George Washington.
  • Caribbean Cultural Center, Manhattan: $70,000 to redevelop and renovate an 8,400 square foot former city firehouse to create its new home on 125th street.
  • Weeksville Heritage Center, Brooklyn: $70,000 to reuse the existing shed structure for exhibit and program space and recreate a root cellar. 

In addition, the remaining sites that participated in Partners in Preservation also each received $10,000 for participating:

  • Astoria Pool, Queens
  • City Island Nautical Museum, Bronx
  • Cleopatra’s Needle, Manhattan
  • Coney Island B&B Carousell, Brooklyn
  • Duo Multicultural Arts Center, Manhattan
  • Ellis Island Hospital Complex, Manhattan
  • Erasmus Hall Campus, Brooklyn
  • Gateway National Recreation Area, Brooklyn
  • Greenpoint Manufacturing and Design Center, Brooklyn
  • Guggenheim Museum, Manhattan
  • Helen Hayes Theatre, Manhattan
  • High Line, Manhattan
  • Intrepid Sea, Air & Space Museum, Manhattan
  • Japan Society, Inc., Manhattan
  • Jefferson Market Library, Manhattan
  • Mind-Builders Creative Arts Center, Bronx
  • Museum of the City of New York, Manhattan
  • Our Lady of Mount Carmel Society of Rosebank, Staten Island
  • Rocket Thrower, Queens
  • Rossville African Methodist Episcopal Zion Church, Staten Island
  • Smithsonian National Museum of the American Indian, Manhattan

Partners in Preservation, which is in its seventh year, has committed $15 million in grants to help preserve historic sites in seven U.S. cities. For more information on the program, visit Facebook.com/PartnersinPreservation or PartnersinPreservation.com, or follow us on Twitter at Twitter.com/PartnersinPres.

About Partners in Preservation
Partners in Preservation is a program in which American Express, in partnership with the National Trust for Historic Preservation, awards preservation grants to historic places across the country. American Express has committed more than $15 million to Partners in Preservation, helping historic sites in seven cities to date, which includes preservation projects in San Francisco, Chicago, New Orleans, Boston, Seattle, Saint Paul/Minneapolis and New York City and has engaged more than a million people. 

Through this partnership, American Express and the National Trust for Historic Preservation seek to increase the public’s awareness of the importance of historic preservation in the United

States and to preserve America’s historic and cultural places. The program also hopes to inspire long-term support from local citizens for the historic places at the heart of their communities.

About American Express
American Express is a global services company, providing customers with access to products, insights and experiences that enrich lives and build business success. Historic preservation has long been the hallmark of American Express’s involvement in the community, reflecting the company’s recognition of the importance of cultural sites and monuments as symbols of national and local identity, and the role that their preservation can play in attracting visitors and revitalizing neighborhoods. Learn more at americanexpress.com and connect with us on facebook.com/americanexpress, foursquare.com/americanexpress, linkedin.com/companies/american-express, twitter.com/americanexpress, and youtube.com/americanexpress.


Martha Cid, M Booth

212-539-3258; marthac@mbooth.com

Caitlin M. Lowie, American Express

212-640-2921; caitlin.m.lowie@aexp.com

Germonique R. Ulmer, National Trust for Historic Preservation

202-588-6475; germonique_ulmer@nthp.org




The National Trust for Historic Preservation, a privately funded nonprofit organization, works to save America’s historic places. PreservationNation.org, @SavingPlaces