Theses Master's

A Preservation Revolution: Resurrecting Franklin Court for the Bicentennial

Zeek, Ryan

1976 marked two hundred years since the declaration of American independence. This milestone, celebrated nationwide as the American Revolution Bicentennial, engendered years of planning and preparation at all levels, from the United States federal government down to numerous municipalities and private groups. Due to the historic significance of this celebration, a large portion of the planning comprised historic preservation activities related to the founding and early years of the United States. One particular Bicentennial preservation project, the abstract interpretation of Franklin Court, designed by Venturi and Rauch for the National Park Service, is particularly transformative when viewed in the context of preservation practice at that time, and in its larger impact on the field.

This thesis critically examines the Franklin Court project in relation to the arc of preservation practice as it developed through the Bicentennial, and in comparison to a contemporary project also undertaken for the Bicentennial. Additionally, the impact of Franklin Court is examined through discussion of other preservation projects that adapted abstract approaches to interpretation.


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More About This Work

Academic Units
Historic Preservation
Thesis Advisors
Dolkart, Andrew S.
M.S., Columbia University
Published Here
June 24, 2019