Protect Our Past is focused on its mission to raise awareness about the value of saving historic properties needed to preserve and protect the historical identity and integrity of properties on and off Cape Cod. “Once lost, they are gone forever.” We are happy to report that we have reached our first goal of raising enough money to produce a 3-5 minute marketing film which will exemplify the issues, need to produce a full length documentary on this topic, and a call to action. This is now in process. To inspire you, we are sharing this gem recently saved by Judith Ford and her “Friends.”
“The 1836 South Harwich Meetinghouse, still standing on its original site, is an exemplary model of early Greek and Gothic design. Founded and profoundly influenced by Amasa Nickerson (1778-1863), a most successful ship owner and sea captain, the Meetinghouse stood close to a thriving fishing and shipping wharf at the end of Deep Hole Road in South Harwich.” (Judith Ford) Was it beyond repair? Not according to Judith! It took passion, grit, determination, creative thinking and fourteen years for her to realize her vision, her dream. Now here it sits in all historical glory!
Judith sets a great example which we will highlight in our documentary. From day one, she had a vision and in spite of the roadblocks, she would not give up on it. There were times when she simply said, “No, there has to be another way” while opposing some standard procedures. She raised the monies and found exemplary resources. Judith shared how she was able to attract gifted craftsmen and women to work on this restoration. Consequently, she is now a masterful source for anyone on the Cape who is restoring a historic property. When you are driving along Route 28 along the Harwich Chatham town line, please veer off on to and go see it. This charming community center, which happens to be acoustically brilliant, is now the home for the cultural arts, performance, education, and a variety of special events. Thus, it is a win/win for historical preservation and friendship to the community. For your online visit go to www.southharwichmeetinghouse.org.
Hopefully you are now inspired. In order to produce a full-length documentary about how to Protect Our Past and successfully start a movement to save historic properties, we need time, talent, and treasure. Perhaps you are asking, “Why is a documentary needed?” Many individuals have struggled mightily to stop the demolition of notable historic structures, winning a few and losing too many. They need help.
It takes the big screen, the media, to start a movement. The “One Big Home” documentary is still energizing by-law changes in communities around the nation, even in Honolulu. It’s director, Thomas Bena, his filmmaker colleague Oliver Becker, and Nick Fitzhugh (redfitz Productions) will be producing this Protect Our Past documentary. They know how to stir hearts and motivate change.
Our first stage fundraising goal is $100,000, which will jump start our quest to match a generous grant donation. To give, please do one of the following: (Yes, you will receive a tax credit.) We must get this done before we lose more irreplaceable buildings to a wrecking ball.