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The National Register of Historic Places
What Can Be Listed?
Wienecke, Emil and Ottilie, House
Emil and Ottilie Wienecke House, Bend
The National Park Service in Washington D.C. establishes guidelines for listing resources in the National Register of Historic Places. In order to be listed in the National Register, a district, site, building, structure, or object must be 50 years of age or older in general. Eligible properties must also have "integrity," or closely resemble their historic appearance. Integrity includes location, design, setting, materials, workmanship, feeling, and association. Most importantly, a resource must be significant or physically connected with an important part of the past. The National Park Service identifies four areas of significance, which are called "criteria." Significance may include a connection with an historic event or trend, Criterion A; a notable historic person, Criterion B; an example of notable architecture or engineering, distinctive construction, or work of a master, Criterion C; or the potential to yield scientific information, such as an archaeological site, Criterion D.
 
Requirements for listing a property in the National Register are explained in detail in National Register Bulletin #15, "How to Apply the National Register Criteria for Evaluation." This bulletin also includes important information regarding listing properties owned by religious organizations, moved properties, birthplaces or graves, cemeteries, reconstructed properties, commemorative properties, and properties that are less than 50 years old.

For More Information
National Register Fact Sheet [pdf] - A SHPO document that describes more about the National Register and how to list a property in Oregon

National Register Benefits and Responsibilities Webpage - SHPO webpage that describes various programs available to property owners with properties listed in the National Register and applicable land-use laws

National Register Bulletin #15, "How to Apply the National Register Criteria for Evaluation" [pdf] - National Park Service publication that explains in detail how to determine if a property is or is not eligible for the National Register

Who Can List a Property?
Lone Fir Cemetery, Portland
Lone Fir Cemetery, Portland
Anyone can nominate a property to the National Register of Historic Places. However, private property cannot be listed without the consent of the owner(s). In the case of a proposed historic district, a majority of property owners must object to proposed district in order to stop the listing. Owner consent is not required to list public property, but the SHPO urges anyone who is interested in listing a public property to work closely and collaboratively with the public entity that owns the property.

What is the Process?
 
Oregon State Univeristy Historic District, Corvallis
Nominating and listing a property in the National Register is a public process that can take up to one year for a single property. Historic districts take much longer. Although there are no fees associated with nominating a property, nomination preparers will need to provide archival-quality photographs and research materials at their own cost.
 
Nominations are accepted three times per year in March, July, and November. Nominations are first reviewed for completeness by SHPO staff. Preparers then have approximately 30 days to correct any noted deficiencies and return a revised nomination. Nominations that meet at least minimum standards are then provided to local historic landmarks commissions for review 60 days before the nomination is considered by the State Advisory Committee on Historic Preservation (SACHP).
 
The SACHP meets three times per year in February, June, and October. Property owners, nomination preparers, and local elected officials are notified of the pending nomination by mail 60 days before the SACHP hearing. Nominations approved by the SACHP are forwarded to the Keeper of the National Register within 90 days of the hearing date. Once received, the Keeper notifies the SHPO within 45 days if the nomination was approved or denied.

For More Information 
 
SACHP Webpage  - SHPO webpage with information about the SACHP, its role, dates of upcoming meetings, and previous meeting minutes
 
National Register Consultants [pdf] - SHPO list of private consultants able to write National Register nominations

Completing the Nomination Form
Hotel Warshauer-Geiser Grand Hotel, Baker City
Hotel Warshauer-Geiser Grand Hotel, Baker City

Nomination preparers should plan spending 100 to 150 hours to research and write a National Register nomination for a single property and up to a year to complete the listing process. Nominations for historic districts take much longer to prepare and up to two to three years to complete the listing.
 
Documentation for the National Register differs depending on the type of property nominated. For more information, forms, and useful aids for preparing nominations see the following webpages below.

National Register Property Types


Single Properties - A single residence, business, or industry with or without associated outbuildings
 
Historic Districts - A neighborhood or complex of related buildings such as a farmstead
 
Multiple Property Documentation - Individual resources related by a common history