Social & Cultural Office, Historic Preservation Section
James K. Polk Building, Suite 900
505 Deaderick St.
Nashville, Tennessee 37243-0334
Martha Carver, Historic Preservation Program Manager
To identify historic properties, TDOT historians, or historic preservation consultants working for TDOT, begin their work by conducting a records search at the Tennessee Historical Commission (THC), which houses the Tennessee State Historic Preservation Office (TN-SHPO). THC is located in Nashville and is the central repository for information on architectural surveys for the state of Tennessee. Their records assist historians in determining if any properties along the project corridor have been listed in the National Register of Historic Places or if they have been inventoried in past surveys.
After conducting preliminary research at the THC, TDOT historians perform field surveys to inventory properties along the project corridor. During the field survey, historians talk with property owners, photograph properties, complete survey forms describing the property’s features and complete a site plan for the property. After the initial field survey, TDOT completes the official THC survey form on each property and provides all of the information to the THC to update their files. This symbiotic relationship allows both agencies to maintain a more complete understanding of the resources found throughout the state. For more information on the Tennessee Historical Commission, go to www.tennessee.gov/environment/hist.
This thorough documentation provides information crucial in determining if a property is eligible for listing in the National Register of Historic Places. For example, as part of the environmental review for the Knoxville Beltway project, a historic consultant inventoried nearly 500 properties. From that survey process, properties such as the Frank Kincer Gas Station (at left) were identified as eligible for the National Register of Historic Places. Built in 1931, this unusual cobblestone and concrete gas station is located at the junction of Friendship Road and U.S. 70, the old Lee Highway. Through early identification, the proposed project will not adversely impact this unique resource.