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  • By Lisa Brody

Allen House to apply for historic registry

The Birmingham City Commission, at its meeting on Monday, April 23, unanimously approved authorizing city staff submitting an application to the Michigan State Historic Preservation Office and United States Department of the Interior/National Park Service to nominate the Allen House and its grounds for listing on the National Register of Historic Places.

Birmingham Planner Matt Baka explained the application doesn't cost anything, with actual preservation coming from the local and state levels.

“It promotes the historic importance of the house and promotes tourism,” Baka said.

In a memo, Baka and Birmingham Museum director Leslie Pielak wrote, “The 1928 Allen House and surrounding grounds at the Birmingham Museum have a unique history that dates from the 1818 pioneer period, when Elijah Willits first came to what is now Birmingham and bought 160 acres that includes the site. Although it is part of the city’s Mill Pond Historic District, the Allen House has numerous historic features and associations that make it eligible for individual listing as a historic site with the honorary National Register of Historic Places.”

Listing it in the National Register of Historic Places would provide formal recognition of the Allen House's historical, architectural, and archeological significance in the state, based on national standards.

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