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Washington County (Maryland) Historical Preservation Awards 2011

CAP: Caption: (L-R) Former Antietam National Battlefield Superintendent John Howard, Washington County Board of County Commissioners President Terry Baker, Clear Spring Business Owner Donald Bragunier. John Howard and Donald Bragunier were awarded Washington County's highest historical preservation awards at a special awards luncheon on May 24, 2011. The Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau organized and sponsored the event.



Washington County (Maryland) Historical Preservation Awards 2011; John Frye Historic Awards Luncheon Honors and Recognizes Two Individuals for Long-Time Historic Preservation and Advocacy

(Hagerstown, MD) - The Washington County Board of County Commissioners recognized two individuals with special annual awards on Tuesday May 24, 2011.
An awards luncheon was organized by the Washington County Historical Advisory Committee, and hosted and sponsored by the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau.
The John Frye Historic Preservation Award was presented to Mr. Donald Bragunier of Clear Spring, Maryland for his life-long stewardship and preservation of historic buildings and sites. Donald Bragunier's recognition was the result of a lifetime commitment to preserving and restoring historic homes, landmark structures and agricultural lands. According to Ralph Young, the chairman of the Washington County Historical Advisory Committee, "Mr. Bragunier has created greenways of contiguous lands, preserving and protecting landscapes that surround the rural village of Clear Spring. His efforts truly demonstrate that preserving, restoring, revitalizing and re-using these treasured assets create jobs that boost and sustain the local economy."
Donald Bragunier is the Founder, President and CEO of Bragunier Masonry Contractors. His work has already netted him recognition from Ernst and Young, and from other industry organizations. The Washington County Board of County Commissioners presented the county's highest historic preservation award to Mr. Bragunier for his lifetime of stewardship. "His quiet, persistent, and philanthropic pursuit of saving Washington County's rural and historic heritage should be noted by all of our citizens," said County Commissioner President Terry Baker. The awards ceremony included a presentation from Clear Spring Historical Society member Betty Shank, who showed several preservation projects, which Mr. Bragunier successfully completed.
The second award was presented to John Howard, the former Superintendent of the Antietam National Battlefield. According to the Historical Advisory Committee's George Anikis, "John Howard retired in December, 2010, after 37 years with the National Park Service, the last 15 at Antietam National Battlefield. During his tenure at Antietam, as a strong advocate for preservation, he provided the vision and leadership that resulted in the National Park Service providing funding for the preservation and renovation of many of the significant historic structures and farms within the battlefield." Anikis also said that Mr. Howard was instrumental in the restoration project of the historic Podium at the Antietam National Cemetery. "Mr. John Howard guided the acquisition of over 1,500 acres of additional important acres of hallowed ground and formed partnerships with the National Museum of Civil War Medicine and the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area, all to the benefit of the visiting public."
One of John Howard's last accomplishments was the renovation and restoration of the Newcomer House, which is now open through a partnership with the Heart of the Civil War Heritage Area and the Hagerstown-Washington County Convention and Visitors Bureau. The house, which witnessed the Battle of Antietam on September 17, 1862, is now an exhibit and visitors center, and welcomes thousands of travelers to the park. The new facility opened in late 2010, in time for the 148th Anniversary of the Battle of Antietam.
Howard's award is called the "John Frye Historic Advocacy Award." The special award denotes a professional lifetime of service to the preservation and restoration of historical sites and buildings in Washington County. According to Ralph Young, "This award recognizes a long pursuit of preservation and renovation of many historic structures at Antietam, including the Roulette Farm, the Poffenberger property, the Newcomer House, the Otto and Sherrick farms, the now world-famous Pry Home and Barn (which is now a world class museum), the Mary Locker Cabin, and the D.R. Miller house." Without John Howard's guidance and energy, these projects may well have never happened.
Interestingly to note, John Howard was recently awarded a national award from the Civil War Trust:
National Park Service Preservationist of the Year Award: This award, which is presented to outstanding NPS personnel, went to John Howard, recently retired Superintendent of Antietam National Battlefield. During his fifteen years at Antietam, Howard worked closely with the Trust to permanently protect 200 acres of the battlefield, while also increasing landscape and historic structure restoration efforts, establishing an active education program and increasing partnerships with the local community.
Named for local historian John Frye, the Washington County Commissioners Annual John Frye Preservation Awards are given to persons or organizations that have made extraordinary efforts to preserve and protect the history of Washington County through historic rehabilitation and restoration, letters and advocacy. Beginning this year, the specific award for Advocacy was been established. The Washington County Historical Advisory Committee accepts and reviews the nominations, and submits them to the Washington County Commissioners.
The committee is made up of appointed volunteers, and includes: Ralph Young, Betty Shank, Pat Schooley, Bill Knode, Preston Law, Marge Peters, George Anikis, Joyce Dunn Randolph, Doug Bast, Paula Stoner Reed, Ruth Anne Callaham, Tom Riford, Professor Tom Clemens, Gary Rohrer, Jean Cushwa, Rev. John Schildt, Jane Hershey, Greg Sullivan, Linda Irvin-Craig, Jan Wetterer, Ed Itnyre and Dr. Evelyn Williams. The Washington County Board of County Commissioners attended the luncheon, several local museums' boards of directors and volunteers, several historical society boards of directors and volunteers, and tourism officials.

This information was provided by the Hagerstown/Washington County Convention and Visitor's Bureau - www.marylandmemories.com

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