Historic Preservation 50th Anniversary



In the fall of 1964, six valiant students at Columbia University enrolled in a new course offered by the Architecture program. The Documentation and Restoration of Historic Structures, taught by Professor James Marston Fitch, was the first educational opportunity in Historic Preservation at the school. Composed primarily of interdisciplinary topics and guest lecturers representing the different fields of preservation, the course’s popularity quickly expanded. In 1968, it evolved into a degree granting program; six years later in 1974 the two-year Master of Science degree in Historic Preservation was established, the first of its kind in the nation. Fifty years later, Columbia University’s Historic Preservation program remains a leader in the field of preservation education. The past five decades cultivated a community of over twelve hundred alumni, faculty, and friends who are significant members of the preservation field. This fall we celebrate both the history of the program and the work the faculty and alumni have accomplished and look forward to the continued success of the program.

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