Conserving & Preserving the Past

Conserving & Preserving the Past

 ~ Samantha Lewis

When it comes to the ‘green’ community, most everyone speaks about the saving of habitats; the regeneration of the Earth so that the air will be cleaner, the water will be healthier, and the next generation will be able to enjoy the forests, the big sky, and not have suburbia end up being the only thing that still stands.

Broken gravestone

Broken gravestone

That is what the basis of ‘green’ is all about – saving the Earth. However, there is another ‘saving’ that also must be done when it comes to the next generation, and rejuvenating the minds and spirits of others, and that is the preserving and saving of the past.

The future is something we all must wrap our heads around when it comes to everything from solar power to wind energy, and the list goes on. But there is a foundation out there in this country that joins with others across the globe in making sure that our artifacts, our history, the work and talents of the many generations before us, are also protected.

Many in the literary world already know the name Steve Berry. This is a man who has written unforgettable, bestselling novels that fly off the bookshelves, introducing characters and plotlines that utilize the past – myths, secrets and truths from that past – to create a thrilling story. But writing great novels is not all Mr. Berry is interested in doing. In fact, he and his wife, Elizabeth, have traveled the world, and one comment they began to hear quite frequently was the fact that there is not enough money either available, or being placed, into the saving of our own human heritage.

Knowing that if such items were gone from this world the next generation and every one to come after would never see and understand the HM5-Arkansas-1-e1304441051383actual links to their own past, this became a huge issue. Yes, Google may house information regarding the who, what, where, etc., of our past, but the conservation of actual relics, the preservation of buildings and locations that have played a huge role in our history, must be done in order for the accomplishments of those who have gone before us to never be forgotten.

As we all know, whether working on the ‘greening’ of nature or the conservation of the past, money is always an issue. Governments are not exactly willing to set aside cash, taking it away from, say, a war program, to dedicate funds to historic preservation. This is where Steve Berry and his wife come into play.

History Matters was their creation. This foundation’s goal is to assist communities all around the world with historic restoration and

preservation projects. It will not come as a surprise that this novelist is behind this, seeing as that his thrillers are always focusing on something lost or forgotten, showing readers that history is extremely important in order for the present and future to work.

There are billons of rare and unique books, periodicals, documents, paintings, sculptures, and more, in collections – both public and private – all around the globe; almost 20% of these are now endangered because of poor conservation and preservation. This a history we can not get back.

Steve and Elizabeth

Steve and Elizabeth

History Matters raises those elusive funds necessary to make sure the past is never forgotten. There is even a 4-hour seminar taught by Steve

and Elizabeth where writers, aspiring writers, and readers can ‘buy’ their way in with a contribution, and all of the money raised from the workshop goes to particular historical projects. Just with this one fundraising event, writers get to help while also receiving the priceless education from one in their own field that can claim ‘best in the business’ status. History Matters also raises money through speaking engagements, galas, receptions, luncheons, dinners, club meetings, and so on. The list of projects is long and varied. History Matters has helped raised money for conservation and preservation projects, for everything from the P.T. Barnum Museum to the Lincoln Log Cabin; from historic cemeteries located across the country to the Mark Twain House.


So as we continue to work diligently for the preservation, regeneration, and protection of the planet – adopting energy programs that will save both plant life, wildlife and human beings – let us remember that there are people who are also doing their best to save the past so that future generations will never forget the achievements that their ancestors made to get us where we are today!

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