The 2023 Edward F. Gerber Urban Preservation Fund is awarded

Aug 9, 2023

Historic New England announces the 2023 Edward F. Gerber Urban Preservation Grant is awarded to Dana Geter of Hartford, Connecticut.

The Edward F. Gerber Urban Preservation Fund, dedicated to upholding the rich heritage of Connecticut’s urban areas, actively supports the crucial work of preserving private historic homes, benefitting homeowners and their communities alike.

As part of its ongoing work to preserve the cultural legacy of the state, Historic New England proudly established the Edward F. Gerber Urban Preservation Fund in 2022 with generous support from Edward Gerber, longtime Connecticut resident and dedicated advocate for historic preservation. Now in its second year, the fund provides an annual grant of up to $10,000 to an owner-occupant of a residential property in one of the vibrant urban communities of Bridgeport, Hartford, Manchester, New Britain, New Haven, New London, Norwalk, Stamford, Waterbury, or West Haven.

“This initiative represents an important step forward in preserving the cherished history of our urban areas,” remarked Ed Gerber. “The Edward F. Gerber Urban Preservation Fund will not only protect our rich architectural heritage but also foster a profound sense of pride and ownership among homeowners and their communities.”

Through this initiative, Historic New England reaffirms its commitment to shaping a thriving and interconnected community where history and modernity coalesce to create an inspiring urban landscape.
The creation of this fund reinforces Historic New England’s unwavering commitment to building a robust network of historic preservation and community stakeholders. By providing critical support to maintain private historic homes, the fund empowers urban homeowners to actively contribute to their community’s resilience and cultural connectivity. The 2023 grant is awarded in partnership with Northside Institutions Neighborhood Alliance, Inc. (NINA), and The Hartford.

The Project

Victorian style house. Red with gold trim. Foundation plantings.

The grant from Historic New England will support a much-needed roof replacement on Geter’s historic home in the Asylum Hill neighborhood. Geter noted, “As a lifelong resident of Hartford, I have been very gratified by the investment made in my neighborhood. Historic neighborhoods such as mine are important to the city as a whole, and I believe that maintaining these homes demonstrates that people care about where they live.”

“Hartford is home to so many beautiful, historic homes, and some of those homes need investment and repair to protect and preserve them. I’m grateful to the Gerber Fund and to Historic New England for all their work supporting historic preservation in Connecticut, and we’re thrilled that an Asylum Hill home has been selected for this grant,” said Hartford Mayor Luke Bronin.

The house is one of many Queen Ann and Colonial Revival style houses constructed in the last decade of the nineteenth century and preserved in the Sigourney Square Historic District. Geter’s Queen Ann style home was constructed in 1889 for Harry Pope, who made significant contributions and design improvements in bicycle manufacturing in the late 1800s. “Having the opportunity to renovate the exterior of my house will build on the momentum already started on the street, preserve the rich historic character of my street, and encourage people who don’t live here to recognize our street and Hartford as the gems that they are,” said Geter.

Geter is working closely with Historic New England and NINA, a non-profit community development corporation formed to facilitate the revitalization of Hartford’s Asylum Hill neighborhood. Since 2003, NINA has rehabilitated twenty-five historic structures and invested more than $14 million in the neighborhood.

“We are delighted to partner with Historic New England in the preservation of this neighborhood. The restoration of these homes improves the perception of the neighborhood for the thousands of people who commute to work nearby, and they create a source of community pride for the people who call Asylum Hill home,” said NINA Executive Director Kenneth D. Johnson.

Media Contact: Susanna Crampton, [email protected]