Montrose seeks addition to Registry

The outlined area of the map shows a rough boundary of the area in Montrose borough under consideration to be added to the National Register of Historic Places. If the district receives state approval, the nomination will move on the National Parks Service for consideration.

BY STACI WILSON

Although several Montrose buildings are already listed on the National Register of Historic Places, a large part of the borough’s center – under the label the Montrose Historic District – is under consideration to be added to the registry as well.

The Pennsylvania State Review Board will consider the Montrose Historic District for nomination to the National Registry at its Feb. 1 meeting in Harrisburg.

County Historian Betty Smith said she is very optimistic Montrose will gain the board’s approval next week.

Smith said, “The people in Harrisburg who know about this town have said it should have been done long ago.”

If the Museum Commission’s review board approves the nomination, it goes on to the National Parks Service for consideration to see if the area meets the criteria to be named to the National Register.

Smith said, “Being in the historic district makes people more cognizant of the area’s history. It brings out the historical significance of where they live.”

Boundaries of the proposed district run roughly along Wyalusing, Owego, Spruce, Chenango, High, Turrell, Grow, Jessup, Laurel, Cliff, Union, Wilson, and Park streets, and Lake Ave.

Sites already included on the registry include the Susquehanna County Courthouse Complex, the Sylvanus Mulford House and the Silver Lake Bank building. The Sylvanus Mulford House and Silver Lake Bank are both located on Church St.

Smith said, “We used all the information we gathered for the Walking Tours.”

In addition to the tour information, Smith provided grant writers and consultants with as much information as she could find on other houses of interest, churches, the old Lake Avenue school and all of the government buildings.

Many homes on Church and Maple streets and Lake Avenue fit with the age and architectural criteria that would contribute to the Montrose Historical District.

Houses within the historical district designated as contributing homes would receive the same benefits as if the home was named separately to the Historic Register and could be eligible for grants, said Smith.

The borough could also qualify or be the recipient of grants is the application is approved.

The process has taken nearly three years, said the county historian.

Smith credited the Endless Mountains Heritage who had a “helping hand in administering the grant.”

“They are also responsible for a lot of grants that have been given in the area to Salt Springs, Center for Anti-Slavery Studies, and even the library and jail buildings. They’ve been wonderfully supportive of everything we do.”

Smith also acknowledged the work of Karen Miller and Barbara Clifford who wrote the grant application.

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