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Annual Garden Party & Member's Meeting

  • Historic Santa Fe Foundation's Garden 545 Canyon Road Santa Fe, NM, 87501 United States (map)

An Invitation to the Annual Garden Party & Members' Meeting at El Zaguán
Thursday, June 28, 5:00pm
El Zaguán Garden, 545 Canyon Road, Santa Fe
Guest Lecturer, Jeff Pappas


El Zaguán Garden, June 6, 2018

El Zaguán Garden, June 6, 2018

Historic Santa Fe Foundation wishes to invite all Foundation members to the Annual Garden Party and Members' Meeting. This event is held annually in El Zaguán Garden and features refreshments, lively discussions about the future of the organization, a thoughtful and educational lecture by a guest speaker, and social time for those interested in preservation and the history of Santa Fe and Northern New Mexico. This year's event starts at 5:00pm in El Zaguán Garden at 545 Canyon Road and will feature guest lecturer Jeff Pappas, New Mexico State Historic Preservation Officer & Instructor at University of New Mexico School of Architecture and Planning. Pappas will speak at 5:30pm and we encourage guests to arrive before the lecture to enjoy light refreshments and to socialize with other members.

There is no charge for members to attend this gathering and talk. We welcome long-term and new members to this event and encourage you to join Historic Santa Fe Foundation if you are not already a member. Membership information on our Join & Give page, or by contacting Melanie McWhorter at 505
-983-2567 or

RSVP for the event to Jacqueline Hill at or call 505-983-2567.

Outwitting History: Preservation, Paradox, and Plato
At its most sincere, historic preservation is about consensus building, taking something old and fashioning from it a value that speaks across a wide spectrum of thought and experience. Everyone seems to agree that getting old is tough because time waits for no one. New and improved, that’s the ticket, something fresh and contemporary. As the saying goes, why have old when you can have new? It seems reasonable and predictable, certainly American, to dismiss what came before for the next great thing. Many respectable historians have argued repeatedly that Americans by nature, if not by DNA, are an ahistorical people, who would rather look ahead than look behind. We hear it all the time in our work: “Tear it down. It’s not worth the expense. It doesn’t function like we need it to.” And if you’re not careful you might actually believe this nonsense. Because the more we hear it the more numb we become. It’s the same old train of thought that old things have less value.

Plato wrote in the Republic that “democracy is a charming form of government, full of variety and disorder; and dispensing a sort of equality to equals and unequals alike.” I’m not sure if Plato was ever into historic preservation, but from my perspective his insights into democratic institutions would have served him well. My intent in this talk is to discuss the paradoxical challenge of preservation couched against an equally powerful force to destroy our material ties to the past and to suggest ways how we might collectively remedy this problem. Drawing from my experience in New Mexico and elsewhere it’s with great intent to show just how powerful preservation can be when married to the right story. That being old is not so bad, that seeking consensus can actually be fun.


In 2012, Jeff Pappas was named New Mexico State Historic Preservation Officer (SHPO) by Governor Susana Martinez where he leads a team of 30 cultural resource professionals. Originally from Worcester, MA, Pappas attended college in Utah, at Brigham Young University. Adopting the American West as home he enrolled at Baylor University and earned an MA in American Studies while serving a two-year research assistantship at Baylor’s Institute for Oral History. Following his time in central Texas, Pappas joined the National Park Service and finished a Ph.D. in American Indian and Public History at Arizona State University. His dissertation Forest Scholars: The Early History of Nature Guiding at Yosemite National Park, 1913-1925 looked closely at the origins of the NPS education and interpretive program, highlighting the contributions of its founding rangers, Drs. Harold Bryant and Loye H. Miller. During his time in Yosemite, Pappas began teaching public history part-time at Colorado State University. Shortly after arriving in New Mexico as SHPO, he joined the faculty at UNM’s School of Architecture and Planning teaching applied courses focused on the federal preservation compliance process. Pappas has served on several national boards, including the National Conference of State Historic Preservation Officers and the National Council on Public History, and local boards, the New Mexico Heritage Preservation Alliance and the Aldo Leopold Writing Program. An active member of the Western History Association, Pappas is the current chair of the Michael P. Malone Award committee.

For questions on this event, other events or membership, contact Melanie McWhorter at or call 505-983-2567. RSVP to Jacqueline Hill at or call 505-983-2567.