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Most Endangered Makes Boston Globe North Article

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Historic buildings across the state face challenges. This organization is sounding the alarm on them

-Jennifer Fenn Lefferts

February 8, 2019

The 2018 Most Endangered Historic Resources list included (l-r) the GAR Hall in Lynn, Echo Bridge railings in Newton/Needham and the Attleboro Switch Tower.

When Wendy Joseph takes visitors inside the Grand Army of the Republic building in Lynn, she closely watches their expressions as they enter the main hall.

And the reaction is always the same.

“They lose their minds over the grandeur of it,’’ she said. “It’s so impressive. You’re breathing history in there. They say, ‘Are we in Lynn?’ "

The General Frederick W. Lander Post 5 G.A.R. building, erected in 1885 to support a fraternal organization of Civil War union veterans and their families, is one of 11 structures on the 2018 Massachusetts Most Endangered Historic Resources List.

The list is published every other year by Preservation Massachusetts, a statewide nonprofit dedicated to saving the Commonwealth’s historic and cultural heritage. It’s a way to raise awareness about historic properties in disrepair that are in danger of further deterioration or even demolition, said James Igoe, the organization’s president.

Hundreds of people may walk by the Lynn G.A.R. building but have no idea of its significance, Igoe said. By putting a spotlight on some of these properties, Preservation Massachusetts hopes to save them.

“This is American history moldering and dry rotting away,’’ said Joseph, president of the recently created Friends of the Grand Army of the Republic Hall and Museum of Lynn. “It’s something we owe future generations.’’

To read the entire story, click here.

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