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Thursday, July 12, 2007
Brownsville Awarded White House "Preserve America" Grant
Brownsville-The City of Brownsville was one of 43 communities across the nation recently recognized in the first round of 2007 Preserve America grants. Brownsville was awarded the grant for a project in collaboration with the Brownsville Historical Association and the Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation.
The grant awards ceremony took place on Thursday, July 12, 2007 at 9 a.m. in the Cannon Caucus Room in the Cannon House Office Building in Washington D.C. Mrs. Laura Bush, First Lady of the United States and Honorary Chair of Preserve America; Rep. Brad Miller (North Carolina), and Rep. Mike Turner (Ohio), co-chairs of the Congressional Historic Preservation Caucus; Secretary of the Interior Dirk Kempthorne; John L. Nau, III, chairman, Advisory Council on Historic Preservation were there to present Brownsville with the grant award. The honorable Mayor Patricio Ahumada received the grant award on behalf of the City of Brownsville. Delina Barrera, Executive Director of the Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation, Gail Bruciak, City of Brownsville MIS Director, and Priscilla Rodriguez, Executive Director of the Brownsville Historical Association were also in attendance.
The City of Brownsville was awarded $132,870 for Brownsville-21 Project: Discovering Brownsville’s Historic Places. This project will develop an interactive web-based description of historical sites in the City of Brownsville using GIS technology, related audiovisual media including CDs and DVDs and brochures and signage. A series of walking and driving historical tours that will be accessible on the internet and placed in informational kiosks in various historic and strategically located buildings in downtown Brownsville will be developed by the Brownsville Historical Association.
The goal of Brownsville-21 is to promote and enhance the heritage of Brownsville while attracting visitors to the region and making Brownsville’s historic sites and information more readily available to the public via technology and in various media. The kiosks will provide up to date information on the building’s history, its architectural significance, as well as the plot location and cause of death of the individuals buried at the Historic City Cemetery. This information will be a valuable historic resource for genealogists, the general public, scholars and tourists to Brownsville. The goal of this project is to merge historic resources with 21st century technology, thereby introducing the study of history to a whole new generation of visitors and public.
The nine sites selected to house the kiosks in the downtown area preserve and interpret local, state and nationally significant aspects of Brownsville history and have the potential to be among the most visited places in the city. “It is our hope that this grant might help launch a new era of commitment to our heritage,” said BHA Executive Director Priscilla Rodriguez.
“We are extremely pleased that the White House has recognized the importance of the historic treasures that are in Brownsville and their potential to attract heritage tourists,” said Charlie Cabler, City Manager. “We look forward to working with the Brownsville Historical Association, and Brownsville Community Improvement Corporation and others as the plan for Brownsville-21 transforms from idea into reality.”
Preserve America is a White House initiative developed in cooperation with the Advisory Council on Historic Preservation, the Department of the Interior, and other federal agencies. Mrs. Bush serves as Honorary Chair. These grants are awarded on a biannual basis, and approved by both the House and Senate.For more information on this project and other projects of the Brownsville Historical Association please call 956-541-5560 or email email@example.com
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