Historic Preservation


Historic Preservation

The Historic Preservation Office supports the Planning Board and the Historic Preservation Commission by providing for the identification, designation, and regulation of historic sites in Montgomery County. Historic Preservation staff also maintains an archive and library of documentation on historic resources in Montgomery County and provide preservation outreach and guidance on preservation best-practices to the public. If you are interested in historic buildings, sites, and programs in Montgomery County Parks, please visit Montgomery Parks.


  • The Montgomery County Cemetery Inventory Project has been an ongoing effort to identify and document the county’s numerous burial grounds. The project’s purpose is to create a baseline of information so that decision-making is informed, actions can be taken and policies developed – all with the goal of protecting the county’s historic cemeteries for future generations. See the Montgomery County Cemetery Directory here.
  • New: Montgomery Modern: Modern Architecture in Montgomery County, Maryland, 1930-1979 was released at an event on October 30, 2015; now available for purchase. Click here for more information
  • Old places are important to people for many reasons. The Montgomery County Historic Preservation office celebrates the numerous reasons Old Places Matter and invites you to learn more about what we do, then get involved in historic preservation in the county.
  • County Council of Maryland Proclamation 2015The County Council issued a Proclamation, introduced by Councilmember Hans Riemer, designating May as Preservation Month in Montgomery County. This year’s Preservation Month theme is “This Place Matters”. Find out more about Preservation Month and watch the ceremony here.
  • The Maryland Historical Trust presented an Excellence in Community Engagement Award to the Historic Preservation Office for its Montgomery Modern Initiative. The award recognized the Historic Preservation Office for the array of educational programs and outreach activities developed for Montgomery Modern, including bus and bike tours of mid-20th-century modern neighborhoods and buildings, guidebooks, an interactive website, lectures and videos. A forthcoming book documenting the County’s midcentury structures, by staff architectural historian Clare Lise Kelly, is expected this fall. The award was presented at a ceremony in Annapolis on March 27, 2015.

    Hammond Wood - Kraft House

  • The Montgomery Modern Bike Tour was held on October 11 as planned. Despite the weather, we had a great turnout and our band of enthusiastic bikers enjoyed visiting mid-century modern resources along Rock Creek Park. See the Guidebook [PDF].This event was presented by the Planning Department’s Historic Preservation Office, in partnership with AIAPV, as part of Docomomo Tour Day 2014.Montgomery_Modern AIAPV
  • After a six-year hiatus, the Historic Preservation office is pleased to bring you the new electronic version of The Preservationist newsletter. Sign up to receive news about Montgomery County’s historic preservation program delivered directly to your inbox.
  • The County Council has designated six park resources on the Master Plan for Historic Preservation, being the Stubbs Barn and five recreation centers. More info.
  • Historic Tax Credit PostcardVan Tuyl Hart Bien (1887-1960) was an architect whose projects include Colonial Revival houses and a modernist school. An article on his lifework appears in the current issue of Montgomery County Story, written by Clare Lise Kelly, of our historic preservation staff. Read the article here. [PDF]
  • The County Council has added the Georgia Avenue Baptist Church to the Master Plan for Historic Preservation as part of the recently approved Glenmont Sector Plan.
  • Places from the Past: The Tradition of Gardez Bien in Montgomery County book coverThe 10th-anniversary edition of Places from the Past: The Tradition of Gardez Bien in Montgomery County, a book that inventories historic sites and districts, is now available online. Recognized with awards from the Maryland Historical Trust and Montgomery Preservation, Inc., Places from the Past documents the history of architecture and community planning in Montgomery County. The book features a series of essays on building traditions, housing types and outbuildings as well as an inventory of historic districts and sites.
  • Visit our new Montgomery Modern page to explore mid-century modern buildings and communities that reflect the optimistic spirit of the post-war era.
  • Effective immediately, historic preservation staff will hold regular office hours to meet with people interested in discussing the Historic Area Work Permit process and to accept plans the Historic Preservation Commission has approved for stamping. Office hours will be held Mondays and Thursdays from 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m. Staff will continue to be available to meet with people by appointment during regular business hours.
  • Read the latest postings on historic preservation topics on The Planning Blog.

Historic Resources Under Evaluation or Recently Evaluated

Research and Designation

The Research and Designation program evaluates resources currently or potentially listed on the Locational Atlas and Index of Historic Sites for possible inclusion in the Master Plan for Historic Preservation. The evaluation of a historic site or district may be initiated by an area master planning effort, by nominations by the public, or through a review of resources listed in the Locational Atlas.

Historic Area Work Permits (HAWPs)

  • The Historic Preservation Commission meeting schedule and agenda can be found here. As required by law, the HPC will act on all applications within 45 days from their submission to DPS. At this time the next deadline for Historic Area Work Permit application submissions is  September 20th for the October  11, 2017 meeting. View a summary of the actions taken by the Historic Preservation Commission at past meetings.
  • Historic preservation design guidelines are available to assist owners of historic properties in the development of their project plans.

Historic Preservation Tax Credits

  • To encourage the restoration and preservation of historic properties, the Montgomery County Council passed legislation (Chapter 52, Article VI) in 1984 creating a historic preservation tax credit program for county-designated historic properties. Owners of properties listed in the Montgomery County Master Plan for Historic Preservation are eligible for a credit equal to 25 percent of documented expenses for exterior maintenance, restoration or preservation work. The tax credit is applied towards County real property taxes.
  • You can find more information regarding the Historic Preservation Tax Credit Program..

Learn more

Our planners, staff to the Historic Preservation Commission and the Planning Board, work to safeguard the county’s significant historic resources. Learn more about how a structure becomes a designated historic site — and what it means if you own a historic home — on this edition of Montgomery Plans. Guest: Clare Kelly, Historic Preservation Planner.
Last Updated: September 20, 2017