Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation Awards $10,000 to Two Preservation Projects
ATLANTA, Nov. 4—The Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation today announced the recipients of its Callahan Incentive Grant, a matching grant given to nonprofit or government organizations undertaking the rehabilitation of a historic building or site in Georgia. Made possible by Barbara and Les Callahan, long-time supporters of the Georgia Trust, the grant totaling $10,000 was awarded to the Central State Hospital Depot in Milledgeville and the Lexington Beth-Salem Church Building in Lexington.
“The Georgia Trust is grateful to the Callahan family for its generous donation. We believe the grants contributed by them will help our recipients to accomplish their noteworthy preservation goals,” said Mark C. McDonald, president and CEO of the Georgia Trust.
Central State Hospital Depot, Milledgeville
Georgia’s Old Capital Heritage Center at The Depot, Inc. was awarded $6,000 to assist with the second phase of rehabilitation of the Central State Hospital Depot in Milledgeville. This will include the repointing, infill and restoration of the original clay brick veneer on the south and west sides of the building. The Victorian styled train depot and storehouse was constructed in 1891 on the grounds of the Georgia Lunatic Asylum, later Central State Hospital, to provide a central location for rail shipments to Milledgeville and the hospital. In its 129 years, the depot building has served various other functions including housing a pharmacy, a print shop, and a museum of Central State Hospital’s history. It was included as part of the Trust’s 2020 Places in Peril listing of Central State Hospital.
Georgia’s Old Capital Museum relocated to the former campus of Central State Hospital in 2017 and renovated a house adjacent to the depot building for offices and meeting rooms. In 2019 the organization changed its name to Georgia’s Old Capital Heritage Center at The Depot, Inc. (GOCHC) to reflect an expanded mission to rehabilitate the train depot for a regional heritage center. GOCHC purchased the building and has recently completed Phase I of the rehabilitation. Once completed, the Heritage Center will include a Native American gallery, theater and community venue space, café, gift shop, exhibits and offices.
Lexington Beth-Salem Church Building, Lexington
The Lexington Historic Preservation Commission (LHPC) was awarded $4,000 for the repair and preservation of 14 historic wood windows at the Lexington Beth-Salem Church Building in Lexington. Formerly known as the Lexington Presbyterian Church, the building was completed in 1893 and housed the first Presbyterian congregation in North Georgia, which was established in the late 18th century. Historic resources associated with the church were collectively placed on the Trust’s 2013 Places in Peril list.
In 2015, the Northeast Georgia Presbytery deconsecrated the church and dissolved what was one of the oldest Presbyterian congregations in Georgia. After that, the City of Lexington purchased the Church, Cemetery and Manse properties. The LHPC immediately began acquiring grants (including a Callahan Incentive Grant in 2017) to make the c.1817 Manse structure habitable, and projects for its first-floor restoration were completed in 2019. With the Manse for the most part stabilized, restored, and usable, the LHPC now turns its focus on the Church structure, which needs a substantial rehabilitation.
About the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation
Founded in 1973, the Georgia Trust for Historic Preservation is one of the country’s leading statewide, nonprofit preservation organizations. The Trust works for the preservation and revitalization of Georgia’s diverse historic resources and advocates their appreciation, protection and use.
The Georgia Trust generates community revitalization by finding buyers for endangered properties acquired by its Revolving Fund and raises awareness of other endangered historic resources through an annual listing of Georgia’s Places in Peril. The Trust recognizes preservation projects and individuals with its annual Preservation Awards and awards students and young professionals with academic scholarships, the Neel Reid Prize and Liz Lyon Fellowship. The Trust offers a variety of educational programs for adults and children, provides technical assistance to property owners and historic communities, advocates for funding, tax incentives and other laws aiding preservation efforts, and manages two house museums in Atlanta (Rhodes Hall) and Macon (Hay House).