About Loudoun Preservation Society
Loudoun Preservation Society (LPS) was formed in December 2008 from the merger of two organizations: the Loudoun Restoration and Preservation Society (LRPS) and the Preservation Society of Loudoun County (PSLC). Both organizations were founded in the 1970s and have been active in many preservation causes. In 1977 LRPS began sponsoring August Court Days in downtown Leesburg and continued the event until 2005. Each year the organization awarded monetary grants to individuals or groups to fund preservation projects. Since its inception, nearly one hundred grants have been awarded for a total of over $880,000. LRPS also worked to preserve the Paxton mansion, known as Carlheim, in Leesburg. The focus of PSLC has been on local and state legislative issues that concerned historic preservation and open space and environmental protection. The organization published The Citizens Guide to the Historical, Cultural and Environmental Organizations in Loudoun County. PSLC recently formed an alliance of heritage and environmental organizations called the Loudoun County Preservation and Conservation Coalition.
History of Loudoun Restoration and Preservation Society
In Leesburg in 1967, beneath the modern facade of a building about to be razed to create parking, an intact log cabin was discovered. A committee of citizens came together to restore and preserve that cabin, which research showed was the original 1767 Stephen Donaldson silversmith shop. Today it is the restored log cabin on West Loudoun Street. From these simple roots, the committee evolved into the Loudoun Restoration and Preservation Society. Committed to saving Loudoun County's unique cultural heritage for future generations, LRPS incorporated in 1973 and devoted the next thirty-five years to raising funds to support the preservation and continued use of landmark buildings, country churches, historic downtowns, and significant sites.
History of Preservation Society of Loudoun County
In 1973 some beautiful old trees were removed from a byway in Leesburg. Other distinctive and historic landmarks were vanishing from Loudoun’s communities. On February 14, 1974, twelve concerned citizens established a county-wide organization to speak out for the preservation of rural land, trees, historic structures, and the quality of life that comes only when the integrity of individual communities is preserved. That organization was the Preservation Society of Loudoun County. With a goal to preserve the natural beauty and cultural heritage of Loudoun County, PSLC became an important voice to speak out in defense of Loudoun’s vanishing heritage and cultural resources and in favor of maintaining Loudoun’s high quality of life.
Photos: Judith Lillis