Events & News

Coffee Break Chat- Clay Lancaster with Otis Pratt Pearsall & Anthony C. Wood


Coffee Break Chat

Clay Lancaster with Otis Pratt Pearsall & Anthony C. Wood
Coffee Break ChatLive on Zoom (recorded)
Wednesday, May 20 at 3:45 pmZoom Meeting ID: 854 0816 3875. Email [email protected] in advance to receive the password before event. 


Why is Clay Lancaster considered a giant in the early efforts to generate historic districts in New York City? Find out from someone who knew him (Otis Pratt Pearsall – and wifeNancy Pearsall) and someone who has researched his preservation legacy extensively (Anthony C. Wood). 
Clay Lancaster was a pioneer in the field of historic preservation. As a scholar of architectural history, he was devoted to the documentation of American buildings.


While residing in Brooklyn Heights, Clay Lancaster was recruited by the area’s active preservation forces. In the late 1950s, preservation leaders in the Heights, such as Otis Pratt Pearsall, had reached the conclusion that there was a substantial legal case to be made for the designation of Brooklyn Heights as an historic district. Consequently, such forces as the Community Conservation and Improvement Council (CCIC), moved to action, and sought the best candidate to document Brooklyn Heights. Henry Hope ReedAlan Burnham and others among the ranks of the Brooklyn Heights preservation forces, all agreed that Clay Lancaster was the man for the job. CCIC then sought out Lancaster, and he began his work researching and documenting the case for the preservation of Brooklyn Heights.
Lancaster also served as Curator of Prospect Park and wrote architectural history books about Nantucket, rural Kentucky, and the American bungalow. 

Zoom ID: 854 0816 3875*Email [email protected] prior to the event to obtain passcode.
**Preview for this week’s Coffee Break Chat: Our oral history with the Ortners