Historic buildings are one of the most important assets in our communities. They tell stories of people and places that came before us. They remind us of our history and illuminate our past. Old buildings celebrate the craftsmanship, art, and skill of those who designed and built them.
Historic buildings are also part of our future.
In many small towns and large cities across Minnesota, older structures provide spaces for us to live, to start our businesses, to share art, music, dance, and stage plays with our neighbors. We preserve, restore, and repurpose our old buildings to meet the needs of today – and tomorrow.
But many of our most precious historic structures are in danger. Almost every day we learn of another beautiful, useful, and important building slated for demolition. Perhaps it is the local elementary school in a small town on the Iron Range. Maybe it is a library in an historic neighborhood in Saint Paul. It could be entire blocks of modest historic duplexes that once housed the families of those who built the cars, loaded the barges, milled the grain, or worked on the railroads.
These historically significant and still valuable buildings need to be saved. You can help save them.
Your gift to Rethos will ensure that more old buildings are preserved, repurposed, and don’t end up in a landfill.
Your gift will allow us to reach more local policymakers in towns across Minnesota. Your support, added to that of so many other concerned preservationists, will help us educate and inform community leaders about the power of preservation and the opportunities older buildings represent.
Your contribution will expand the number of DIY classes for owners and renters living in older homes. They will learn how to repair and maintain their historic houses so they remain in use, never falling into disrepair.
Your charitable investment will extend and strengthen the statewide Minnesota Main Streets network of communities, led by local people, to preserve and reimagine their historic downtown buildings – the backbone of thriving economic districts, innovative businesses, attractive tourism destinations, and valued neighborhoods.
Please consider a gift to Rethos as part of your philanthropic plan of action this year.
We are grateful for your history of engagement in historic preservation. More important work must still be done. Your contribution is needed to save old buildings, preserve our history, build our future, and tell our stories.
Learn more about how Rethos is working to save old buildings and change the way people think about historic preservation. Look around our website at and let us know what you think.
Your partner in preservation,
Dr. Heidi Swank
p.s. You can also support important historic preservation initiatives by making a gift as part of your estate plans. If you would like to learn more, please contact me at 651-293-9047. All gifts to Rethos are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law. No goods or services are provided in exchange for your charitable contributions.