State Approves Perkasie Park Historic Register Nomination
The Pennsylvania Historic Preservation Board unanimously approved the nomination of Perkasie Park to the National Register of Historic Places on Tuesday in Harrisburg.
The Board said that Perkasie Park, founded in 1882, is significant as a property associated with the American camp meeting movement of the late 19th and early 20th Century, and for its design and architecture.
The approved application will be sent to the National Park Service’s Keeper of the National Register, who has the final authority to list a property or determine if it is eligible for the National Register. The Keeper’s review process is generally completed within 45 days.
The nomination will list the property as the Perkasie Park Historic District. If approved by the Park Service, Perkasie Park would become the second National Register property in Perkasie, joining the historic South Perkasie Covered Bridge.
Perkasie Park is one of a handful of intact camp meeting facilities that continue in operation in Pennsylvania. It has had summertime religious services since 1882, and currently hosts services from various local churches and religious groups. In addition, Perkasie Park’s historic outdoor auditorium has hosted secular public events for the past 134 years.
The facility has 66 buildings, including 60 Victorian cottages. The Preservation Board found 63 of the 66 structures were contributing historic structures.
During the Victorian era, Perkasie Park was the second biggest public attraction in Bucks County, next to the annual county fair, and at its peak, the Park’s camp meeting had 23,000 visitors, with 2,000 teams of horses, at its 1890 Sunday camp meeting. It also served as an important train and trolley destination for the growing Borough.
In 2015, Perkasie Borough recognized Perkasie Park as a historic structure, and its nomination to the National Register was supported by U.S. House Representative Michael Fitzpatrick, Pennsylvania state Representative Craig Staats, former state Representative Paul Clymer, and the Bucks County Board of Commissioners.
The National Register of Historic Places was established in 1966 to help coordinate and support public and private efforts to identify, evaluate, and protect our historic and archeological resources.
Listing in the National Register provides recognition of a property's historic importance and assures review of federally funded or permitted projects that might impact the historic character of the property. If the property is listed, certain federal tax credits for rehabilitation and other provisions may apply. Listing in the National Register does not mean that limitations will be placed on properties by the federal government.
For more information about Perkasie Park, visit its website at www.perkasiepark.com.