As we celebrate Preservation Month during May, learning about Montgomery County’s historic resources has never been easier. The 10th-anniversary edition of the award-winning Places from the Past: The Tradition of Gardez Bien in Montgomery County, Maryland, a book that inventories the county’s historic sites, is now available online. This coffee table-type publication, illustrated with photographs, architectural drawings and maps, is available as a free download by chapter or as a print-on-demand digital edition for purchase on-line. Initially printed a decade ago, the 357-page book had gone out of print. The new release, with an updated forward, makes the encyclopedic Places from the Past available again in durable paperback or, for the first time, in hardcover binding and electronic format.
Recognized with awards from the Maryland Historical Trust and Montgomery Preservation, Inc., Places from the Past documents the history of architecture and community planning in Montgomery County. The book features a series of essays on building traditions, housing types and outbuildings as well as an inventory of historic districts and sites. The inventory is organized by geography within the county and includes orienting maps as well as images and descriptions of some 400 individual historic sites and 20 historic districts. Those curious about how their communities were settled or the history behind some of the county’s oldest homes will find the book an informative and engaging read.
Author Clare Lise Kelly is a historic preservation planner who has been researching historic sites in the county since 1989. Kelly has dedicated the book to property owners and citizens who, through their hard work and commitment, have protected historic sites for the enjoyment and education of present and future generations.
Information about the county’s designated historic sites and districts is also available on-line by using our interactive historic site locator tool. The Maryland Historical Trust recognized this web-based mapping and information tool with its Excellence in Media and Publications Award in 2012. The historic preservation map tool locates properties that have been identified in the Locational Atlas and Index of Historic Sites in Montgomery County, designated in the Master Plan for Historic Preservation, or listed in the National Register of Historic Places.