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Identifying Historic Properties

Best Farm, Monocacy National Battlefield, Frederick Co.Best Farm, Monocacy National Battlefield, Frederick Co.

The NHPA established the National Register of Historic Places, which is a list of districts, sites, buildings, structures, and objects of national, regional, or local significance. Under Section 106, federal agencies must consider the effects of their actions on historic properties, defined as resources that are included in, or eligible for inclusion in, the National Register.

Step 2 of the consultation process involves identifying cultural resources that may be affected by a project and evaluating their significance. Maryland’s diverse cultural heritage encompasses a broad range of resources including historic buildings, archeological sites on land and underwater, historic districts, engineering structures, and objects. MHT's Research & Survey programs maintain extensive records and information on these resources, organized and available through the MHT Library and its associated GIS and databases.

Agencies and recipients of agency assistance may need to undertake cultural resource investigations during project planning or hire consultants to perform those studies. Before conducting survey work, it is important to have a clear understanding of the needed scope of work. Consultants should request copies of all MHT correspondence related to a project from their client.

Survey and Evaluation Standards

MHT provides helpful standards and guidelines for completing archeological studies, architectural and historical investigations, and Determinations of Eligibility evaluation efforts. Section 106 affords consideration to those cultural resources that are listed in or determined eligible for inclusion in the National Register of Historic Places. Thus, determinations of eligibility are a critical step in the consultation process.

The National Park Service also has extensive guidance for undertaking evaluation, preservation and documentation studies.