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Guide to the Preparation of Commemorative Integrity Statements

2.3 Resources Directly Related to the Reasons for Designation as a National Historic Site

2.3.1 Introduction

This section should contain details on the resources - the whole and the parts of the whole - which are directly related to the reasons for designation. Under the CRM Policy , these are known as level 1 resources.

The CIS must list and describe all resources which have been evaluated as resources directly related to the reasons for designation as a national historic site. This section must also include a description of the historic values of these resources.

The section on values must be followed by a section outlining the conditions necessary to ensure that the resources are not impaired or under threat, which provides guidance on the management of the site. It is here that what is meant by "not impaired or under threat" is defined in the context of the specific site.

2.3.1.1 Definition

As stated in the Glossary, resources directly related to the reasons for designation as a national historic site include:

  • the Designated Place.
  • in situ cultural resources within the administered place that have a direct relationship with the reasons for designation. In rare cases, the HSMBC has specifically identified resources which relate to or have national historic significance, in which case, these are the only in situ cultural resources recorded in this section.
  • cultural resources identified in the HSMBC minutes as contributing to the national significance of the Designated Place, including resources outside the Designated Place.
  • objects which have a direct relationship to the commemorative intent and to the site. These may be located either within or outside the Designated Place.
2.3.1.2 Identifying Resources Directly Related to the Reasons for Designation

The CIS should identify the resources directly related to the reasons for designation as a national historic site.

Where the list of these resources is extensive it can be summarized in this section with the full list of cultural resources in an appendix. Groups of resources that share values may be treated together.

The evaluation of resources, including the identification of values, is done by a multi-disciplinary team. This ensures that a variety of perspectives is represented, a degree of consistency is achieved and that determination of value does not rely solely on one specific function or aspect.

The Designated Place should be considered first, followed by its historic values. In cases where the Designated Place is a single feature, a building or archaeological site for example, the values should be dealt with under Designated Place. A separate section on buildings and structures or on archaeological sites may not be needed.

The balance of the resources which are directly related to the reasons for designation should be categorized by type in the same way as in the State of Protected Heritage Areas Report with sections on:

  • Landscapes and Landscape Features.
  • Buildings and Structures.
  • Archaeological Sites.
  • Objects.

In cases where there are resources or values directly related to the reasons for designation which do not fit the categories above, they should be described under an appropriate heading.

2.3.2 Historic Value

Integral to commemorative integrity is an understanding of historic value. If the owner/manager does not know "where value lies", it is impossible to manage cultural resources appropriately or to achieve commemorative integrity. Knowing what the values are, or where value lies, is fundamental to stewardship.

A sound understanding of historic value also allows decision-makers to determine what is appropriate or inappropriate. It provides the foundation for ensuring that proposals, projects and other initiatives are built on the principles of cultural resource management. Where proposals are generated externally, knowing where value lies makes it possible to assess impact on the cultural resource and its historic values.

Clear, thorough, and precise articulation of each resource's values is critical to the success of a CIS.

2.3.2.1 Definition
Historic value is a value or values assigned to a resource, whereby it is recognized as a cultural resource. These values can be physical and/or associative.
2.3.2.2 Describing Historic Values

Historic values should be clearly stated for each cultural resource or group of resources, avoiding duplication while still capturing the reasons for the importance of the resource.

The CRM Policy principles identify a number of key aspects of historic value which should be considered when evaluating resources:
  • Qualities and features which relate to the resource's national historic significance. For example 2 , at the Basilica of St. John the Baptist, in St. John's, one of the reasons for designation relates to the building's Lombard Romanesque Revival architecture. This value includes the features of the Basilica design which characterize the Lombard Romanesque Revival style, such as the use of the round arch, the two tier arcade, the smooth wall surfaces, the twin bell towers with pyramidal roofs, the interior classically inspired features and the detailing.
  • The resource in its context. For example, one of the values for the Gulf of Georgia Cannery's cannery building is the physical relationship of the building to navigable water, which is central to its historic function.
  • The whole and its parts. For example, Red Bay is valued for its association with 16th century Basque whaling activities. The shore stations are valued for their association with processing whales (for example flensing and rendering), even though they do not individually capture the breadth of the whole.
  • The evolution of the resource over time, not just its existence at a single moment in time. For example, one of the values for the Oil Drum Shed at the Gulf of Georgia Cannery is that it illustrates the changes in the fishing industry over time. It also demonstrates the industrial role of the Gulf of Georgia Cannery building in particular, especially the development of fish oil products during and after the Second World War.
  • The interaction of nature and human activities. For example, Kitwanga Fort was designated in part for the presence of an 18th century Gitwangak hill top fort. The natural hill itself should be valued for the strategic defensive position it provided for the site.
  • Viewscapes and viewsheds . For example, in recommending the Former Provincial Lunatic Asylum in Saint John for designation, the HSMBC noted the importance of the varied and attractive vistas, such as the unobstructed view from the building to the Reversing Falls. When articulated as values, view planes should be specific about where they are and what they contain. Views often include features that are not, in themselves, evaluated as resources in the CIS.
  • Continued or traditional uses. For example, the Banff Springs Hotel is of value for its continued use as a hotel. Continuity of use is often a powerful value, particularly at non-museological sites.

Values can be physical (where value is reflected in a specific tangible feature of the resource) and/or associative (where value is reflected in its connection with a theme, person or event of historic importance). Associative value is also known as symbolic value. Physical and associative values should not be separately identified when listing them in the CIS.

A physical description or a short history of a resource is not adequate as a description of values.

A resource may possess historic values both related to the reasons for designation and unrelated to those reasons. Both types of values can be dealt with in this section of the CIS. However, the presentation of the values must distinguish between the two types. Generally, this is easily done by identifying and listing values directly related to the reasons for designation together followed by those that are not related.

Guideline No. 2 - CRM Policy and the Commemorative Integrity Statement provides a useful list of questions relating to identification of historic values.

2.3.3 Objectives for Cultural Resources

Clearly stated objectives for safeguarding and communicating historic values are fundamental to each CIS. Objectives serve as an essential bridge between the identification of historic values and planning, managing, and reporting on a national historic site.

Objectives in the CIS express the desired state of the site, its resources and their historic values. Objectives describe the ideal field conditions sought through management. Evaluating whether these conditions are met serves as the basis for identifying necessary policies and actions.

The objectives provide a framework for management activities and performance indicators for measuring the state of a site's commemorative integrity.

2.3.3.1 Writing Desired Outcomes as CIS Objectives

A set of objectives should be prepared for each of the three elements of the CIS. These should focus on results rather than efforts, and condition rather than strategies. The objectives should be designed for the long term, setting the stage for performance measurement of commemorative integrity without reference to specific timelines.

Certain objectives apply to all sites, as they are criteria essential to the definition of commemorative integrity. Other objectives will be site-specific, depending on individual circumstances. Every objective should relate to one or more values.

The following outcome objectives should be the same for all national historic sites. These are standard for all resources and should be stated only once at the end of this section of the CIS:

The resources (Designated Place, landscapes and landscape features, buildings and structures, archaeological sites, objects) will not be impaired or under threat when:

  • the resources and their associated values are respected . The term respect has several meanings. In the case of resources in good condition, respect means the resources and associated values are maintained so that there is no deterioration. In the case of resources not in good condition, respect means efforts to enhance the condition of the resources and associated values are based on the historic values of the resources. This outcome places attention on the state of the resource itself.
  • management decisions are based on adequate and sound information and are made in accordance with the principles and practice of the CRM Policy.
  • the resources and their associated values are not lost, impaired or threatened from natural processes, for example erosion and decay, within or outside of the site.
  • the resources and their associated values are not lost, impaired or threatened from human actions within or outside of the site. This objective places attention on the human-induced threats which could adversely affect the resource's integrity. There are four sources of human threat:
    - human-induced natural threat (e.g., pollution, fire).
    - external human threat (e.g., adjacent property development which has an adverse impact).
    - internal human threat from use (e.g., vandalism, excessive wear and tear from overuse).
    - internal human threat from inappropriate management (e.g., on-site development which has an adverse impact).
  • the historic values of the resources are communicated to visitors and stakeholders .

Examples of site-specific outcome objectives, to be used as necessary, could include the following:

  • new and evolving uses of the Designated Place respect its heritage-defining values. (This would apply at the Winnipeg Exchange District, for instance, which continues to be a vibrant business and social setting).
  • partners and 3rd parties respect the resources and significance of place which make it a national historic site. (This would be appropriate at a site like Battle of the Windmill, which is operated by a third party).
  • the fort is maintained as a ruin. (At Fort St. Joseph, the HSMBC defined the state in which the resource is to be managed. The CIS must define this ruined state in terms of physical and associative values – for example, form and appearance, contribution to sense of place).
  • the Designated Place is not threatened by river erosion. (This objective should be used at sites like York Factory, where this has been identified as a significant and long-term threat).

The statements within quotes below are not considered outcome objectives. These statements represent management activities, which may help to ensure commemorative integrity. The statements in italics represent the desired outcomes. These should be used as objectives in the CIS.

  • "heritage impact assessment is conducted prior to development." This is a management prescription toward achieving the following outcome:
    • the resources and their associated values are managed according to the principles of value, public benefit, understanding, respect, and integrity.
  • "all objects have been identified and inventoried." A more appropriate objective would be:
    • the resources and their associated values are managed according to the principles of value, public benefit, understanding, respect, and integrity."
  • "The principles of the CRM Policy are applied to all contracts, leases, licensing concessions, agreements, partnerships, or other management tools." The outcome should be:
    • partners and 3rd parties respect the cultural resources and significance of place which make it a national historic site.

As the building tool for long-range planning and reporting, the CIS should include the more strategic outcomes, leaving the management actions to the management and business plans.

2 All examples used in this document are consistent with the direction in the Guide and Guidelines. They may not be identical to existing CISs.