Landmark Fund Lectures

These lectures bring distinguished scholars, authors, historians and urbanists to the St. Mark’s campus for lectures and panel discussions that are reflective of the Landmark Fund’s commitment to community preservation and to educating the public on the cultural history of the St. Mark’s site and its surrounding neighborhood. Podcasts are available for 2007-2009.

Preservation Without Limits: The Work of James Marston Fitch and the James Marston Fitch Charitable Foundation
Speakers: Joan K. Davidson, William Higgins, Theodore Prudon, Mary Dierickx
Panelists: Anne Van Ingen, Robert Silman, William Higgins, Theodore Prudon, Mary Dierickx
Moderator: John H. Stubbs

James Marston Fitch (1909-2000) was a preservation pioneer whose writings and teaching pushed the boundaries of our understanding and appreciation of historic resources. The James Marston Fitch Charitable Foundation was established to support projects of original research and creative design that advance the practice of historic preservation in the United States. On the occasion of James Marston Fitch’s 100th birthday, the Landmark Fund was pleased to welcome participants John Stubbs, Chairman, James Marston Fitch Charitable Foundation & Vice President of Field Projects, World Monuments Fund, who introduced the speakers and moderated the panel discussion; Joan K. Davidson, Chair, Hudson-Fulton-Champlain Quadricentennial Commission & President, Furthermore-grants-in-publishing, a program of the J.M. Kaplan Fund; William Higgins, Higgins Quasebarth and Partners; Theodore Prudon, Prudon & Partners; Mary Dierickx, Mary B. Dierickx Historic Preservation Consulting; Robert Silman, Robert Silman Associates; and Anne Van Ingen, Director, Architecture, Planning & Design Program and Capital Projects, New York State Council on the Arts. The Fitch Charitable Foundation’s 2008 grant awardees were also announced. This program was made possible, in part, with support from Beyer Blinder Belle Architects and Planners, LLP, Grey Dog Coffee, Kumquat Cupcakery and Union Square Wines & Spirits.

Part 1 - Introduction & Speakers
Part 2 - Panel Discussion

*Please note there is an approximately 4 min. break in the recording toward the beginning of Part 2

© St Mark's Historic Landmark Fund 2009

St. Mark's Preservation Ethic 40 Years of Innovation: Lessons for the Future?
Panelists: Lisa Ackerman, Stephen Facey, Jeffrey Hebert
Moderator: Anthony C. Wood

In 1967, St. Mark’s Church In-the-Bowery initiated a pioneer project in urban neighborhood preservation through the sponsorship of a summer youth employment program, the Preservation Youth Project, which reclaimed the historic graveyard of St. Mark’s for public enjoyment and for use as a community park. Over the ensuing 40 years, St. Mark’s has been an innovative force for preservation—from leading the effort in 1969 to achieve historic district designation for its neighborhood to establishing the Neighborhood Preservation Center in its landmark Ernest Flagg rectory in 1999.

Anthony C. Wood led a panel discussion that celebrated the history of preservation at St. Mark’s Church In-the-Bowery, looked at the precedents it set throughout New York and the U.S., and considered the future direction of community building through preservation. Stephen Facey started the evening with a brief presentation to give an overview of these innovative approaches to historic preservation at St. Mark’s, beginning with the PYP, which Mr. Facey ran. After the presentation, Mr. Facey took part in a panel discussion that also included one of the Neighborhood Preservation Center’s former interns, who most recently has been working in New Orleans as part of the recovery effort. The panel featured Lisa Ackerman, Executive Vice President & COO, World Monuments Fund; Stephen Facey, Executive Vice President, Cathedral Church of St. John the Divine and President, Board of Trustees, St. Mark's Historic Landmark Fund; Jeffrey Hebert, Director of Planning at Concordia Architecture & Planning and former Director of Community Planning for the Louisiana Recovery Authority and Anthony C. Wood, preservation activist & author of Preserving New York: Winning the Right to Protect a City's Landmarks, who moderated the discussion.

Part 1 - Introduction & Presentation by Stephen Facey
Part 2 - Discussion

© St Mark's Historic Landmark Fund 2008

Local Food Panel: The “Buy Local” Movement and its Role in Promoting Economic Stability
Panelists: Colin Alevras, Judith LaBelle, Cheryl Rogowski, Keith Stewart

Moderator: Loren Talbot


An expert panel discussed local food and the role of New York City residents in preserving and supporting our regional farmland. The Local Food Panel was a fitting addition to St. Mark's Annual Lecture series as it reflects the organization’s commitment to community preservation and celebrates the greenmarket in front of St. Mark’s Church, which is one of the oldest greenmarkets in New York City. The panel featured farmers Cheryl Rogowski and Keith Stewart; Judith LaBelle, President of the Glynwood Center; Colin Alevras, chef and owner of The Tasting Room; and Loren Talbot of Local Labels, who moderated the discussion

Part 1 - Introduction & Discussion
Part 2 - Discussion (cont'd)

© St Mark's Historic Landmark Fund 2007


The Frank Lloyd Wright Plan for St. Mark's Church In-the-Bowery

Speaker: Hilary Ballon

Architectural historian and Columbia University Art History Professor, Dr. Hilary Ballon discussed Frank Lloyd Wright’s 1929 design of a trio of residential towers that were to be built on the St. Mark’s Church site.  Dr. Ballon is the Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of the Society of Architectural Historians and the author of several books, including the Frank Lloyd Wright’s Towers (Norton, 2006).  Dr. Ballon also served as curator of the 2004 exhibit, “Frank Lloyd Wright: The Vertical Dimension,” at the Skyscraper Museum.




The Island at the Center of the World –  The Epic Story of Dutch Manhattan and the Forgotten Colony That Shaped America

Speaker: Russell Shorto

Russell Shorto, author of The Island at the Center of the World - The Epic Story of Dutch Manhattan & The Forgotten Colony that Shaped America, presented the first St. Mark's Landmark Fund Lecture. For more than 200 years, St. Mark's has been a vibrant center of spiritual, political, artistic and community activity. It was at the St. Mark's site that New York's founding father, Peter Stuyvesant, "built a manor and chapel," writes Shorto. "Here he would live out his life and be buried, and here, over the parade of centuries, flappers, shtetl refugees, hippies, and punks - an aggregate of local residents running from Trotsky to Auden to Charlie Parker to Joey Ramone - would shuffle past his tomb." In his acclaimed history, Shorto tells the story of the Dutch colony that established the ideals of tolerance and individual rights which have profoundly shaped American history. The New York Times called The Island at the Center of the World, an "astonishing" narrative - "a book that will permanently alter the way we regard our collective past."


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