Earthquake Damage to Older and Historic Buildings
The Maryland Historical Trust, the State Historic Preservation Office, is compiling information about damage to older and historic buildings throughout Maryland from the earthquake that struck the East Coast on August 23, 2011.
UPDATE - August 25, 2011
At 11:00AM on Wednesday August 24, 2011 the Maryland Historical Trust distributed an email blast to more than 3,000 individuals and media outlets across Maryland requesting information about damage to historic buildings across the State. Thus far the reports have been relatively few, given the magnitude of the quake and the distance it travelled. In the last 24 hours, the Trust has received reports of damage to 35 individual older and historic buildings across Maryland. The information was derived from individual submissions via the MHT website, emails and phone calls to MHT staff, and media reports. The Trust will continue to collect information about earthquake damaged properties until early September.
If you have an historic home, commercial building, or other historic property that has been damaged by the recent earthquake, please share information about the damage via the Maryland Historical Trust website at http://mht.maryland.gov/earthquake_report.html.
If your property is protected by a historic preservation easement held by the Maryland Historical Trust, please contact Amy Skinner at email@example.com or (410) 514-7632 to report any damage and discuss plans for assessment and repair.
Although no grants are available for quake damage, financial assistance in the form of the Sustainable Communities Tax Credit program is available for privately-funded substantial repairs. For detailed information about these credits, refer to the Trust’s website at http://mht.maryland.gov/taxcredits.html
Below are some key points from the information we’ve received thus far:
- Damage to historic buildings has been reported in Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Baltimore City, Calvert, Kent, Montgomery, and Prince George’s Counties.
- The damage reports have been most heavily concentrated in Anne Arundel County (15), primarily in downtown Annapolis. By and large, the damage reported in Annapolis has been relatively minor, and mostly isolated to chimneys and roof materials. There have been no reports of major damage in Annapolis thus far. In central Anne Arundel County there have been reports of moderate to severe damage to two residential properties in Edgewater and Galesville. Again, this damage appears to have affected the chimneys, which in one case toppled and punched holes in the roof of the house. Another property may have been compromised structurally, but the owners are awaiting the report of a structural engineer.
- In Baltimore City we have received 5 damage reports, including the well publicized damage to St. Patrick’s Church in Fells Point and the damage to 2 properties in Highlandtown.
- In Baltimore County we have received 2 reports of chimney and porch roof damage in Catonsville.
- In Calvert County, there have been 2 reports of damage in Owings and Huntingtown, both relatively minor (chimneys and retaining walls)
- In Kent County damage has been reported at 3 properties in Chestertown. All reports have been for minor damage, again primarily isolated to chimneys and minor masonry cracks.
- In Montgomery County there have been 2 reports, 1 in Silver Spring and 1 in Rockville involving cracked window glass, and widening or preexisting masonry and plaster cracks.
- In Prince George’s County there have been reports of damage to 6 properties in Bladensburg, Bowie, Hyattsville, and Upper Marlboro.
- Of the damage reported thus far, MHT holds preservation easements on 14 of the 35 properties.
- The damaged historic buildings are used for the following purposes:
6 religious buildings
5 educational/institutional buildings
12 residential properties
- The damage assessment (not necessarily verified by trained inspectors or engineers):
24 reports of minor damage
6 properties with moderate damage
5 properties with severe/structural damage
Out of consideration for the privacy of individual property owners, the Trust will not provide detailed information about damage to specific buildings.
This page updated: August 26, 2011
- Preservation Maryland
- Maryland Association of Historic District Commissions
- Maryland Environmental Trust
- Maryland Downtown Development Association
- Archeological Society of Maryland
- Maryland Association of History Museums
- Maryland Historical Society
- Maryland State Archives
- Maryland Office of Tourism Development
- Maryland Humanities Council
- Maryland State Arts Council
- National Park Service
- Advisory Council on Historic Preservation
- National Trust for Historic Preservation
- National Alliance of Preservation Commissions
- National Conference of State Historic Preservation Offices
- National Center for Preservation Training & Technology
- Preservation Action
- Heritage Preservation