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Heritage Documentation Programs


Heritage Documentation Programs administers the Historic American Buildings Survey (HABS), the Federal Government's oldest preservation program, and its companion programs: the Historic American Engineering Record (HAER) and Historic American Landscapes Survey (HALS). Documentation produced through the programs constitutes the nation's largest archive of historic architectural, engineering, and landscape documentation. The HABS/HAER/HALS Collection is housed at the Library of Congress.

 

Latest News

    • Upcoming Educator Workshop (Historic American Engineering Record + Library of Congress's Learning and Innovation Office)On April 22, participants will explore the HAER collection, brainstorm ideas for using collection items as teaching tools, and develop activities that will be featured during a family day at the Library in July 2019.Learn more... [external link]
    • Historic American Engineering Record's 50th AnniversaryIn 2019, HAER marks its 50th year. Learn more about the history of the program and some of its current work in this article, which was published by the American Society of Civil Engineers in Civil Engineering Magazine (January 2019).Learn more... [external link will open in pdf]
    • Enter the 2019 Leicester B. Holland Prize CompetitionThe Holland Prize recognizes the best single-sheet measured drawing of a historic building, site, or structure prepared to HABS, HAER, or HALS standards. Entry forms are due April 30, 2019, and completed entries are due June 30, 2019.Learn more...
    • Enter the 2019 Charles E. Peterson Prize CompetitionThe Peterson Prize recognizes the best set of measured drawings prepared to HABS, HAER, or HALS standards and donated to HABS, HAER, or HALS by students. Entry forms are due June 1, 2019, and completed entries are due July 1, 2019.Learn more...
    • Enter the 2019 HALS Challenge: Historic StreetscapesFor the 10th annual HALS Challenge, we invite you to document historic streetscapes. Entries are due July 31, 2019.Learn more...
    • New Point Cloud Animation: Tortugas Harbor LightIn August 2017, HABS architects Paul Davidson and Daniel De Sousa documented this historic lighthouse at Fort Jefferson (Dry Tortugas National Park) using 3-D high-definition terrestrial laser scanning.See the video and learn more about the project on Facebook.
    • New Time-Lapse Video: High-Definition Laser ScanningHere's a day's worth of work in 30 seconds. HAER architects Dana Lockett and Thomas Behrens recently scanned the fifteen-millionth Ford Model T on behalf of the Historic Vehicle Association. See the video and learn more about the project on Facebook.
    • New Virtual Tour & Fly-Through: Miller Field Seaplane HangarMiller Field was the only aerial coast defense station established on the East Coast, and the seaplane hangar, built in 1919 with additions in 1939, played a significant role in the operations of the field.Learn more...
    • New Fly-Throughs: Fort TildenFort Tilden was established in 1917 as part of a network of coastal fortifications in the New York City area and New Jersey established to protect the New York Harbor, and was staffed by the Coast Artillery Corps.Learn more...
    • New 3-D Models: Soldiers' National MonumentThe Soldiers' National Monument honors the fallen soldiers of the Battle of Gettysburg. It stands a short distance on the other side of the iron fence from where President Lincoln delivered the Gettysburg Address.Learn more...
    • Virtual Tour: Ellis Island The Historic American Buildings Survey is working on a multiyear project to document Ellis Island. Take a virtual tour of areas on Ellis Island that aren't open to the public. Learn more...
    • National Covered Bridges Recording ProjectThe Historic American Engineering Record and the Federal Highway Administration maintain a joint research and technology program for historic covered bridges.Learn more...
    • HABS Guide to Field DocumentationThis Field Guide offers step-by-step instructions about how to observe, take field measurements, and create field notes and a short-form report about a historic site or structure to HABS standards. Learn more...
    • Producing HABS/HAER/HALS Measured Drawings from Laser ScansThe pros and cons of using laser scanning for heritage documentation.Learn More...