Property: Downtown Williamston
Architecture critic Amanda Harrell-Seyburn says: Greenfield Village — Henry Ford’s assemblage of historic buildings — is a fun visit, but nothing beats preservation of buildings in-situ (in place), such as the preservation of a collection of buildings like those in downtown Williamston. Architecture is the physical form of a culture’s values. Preserving Williamston’s downtown guarantees certainty of the aesthetic and character of the downtown to its citizens. You have to know where you’ve been to understand where you are going.
The aged architecture and weathered wood of downtown Williamston’s historic district comforts you like an old rocking chair.
If you’re wondering just how historic this district is, the downtown area was recently added to the National Register of Historic Places with the help of Williamston High School history teacher Mitch Lutzke.
Williamston Mayor Jim DeForest said the town’s Downtown Development Authority hired Lutzke, who spent several months compiling information to submit to the state and then to Washington to be considered for induction into the National Register of Historic Places.
Property owners in the historic section are still able to renovate their historic buildings — some being more than 100 years old — as long as the new renovations are of similar style and texture of the previous dcor, DeForest said.