Hi, I'm Kaitlin, a historic preservationist dressed in pink on an adventure!

Hi, I’m Kaitlin, a historic preservationist dressed in pink on an adventure! This building is the Royal Ontario Museum in Toronto, Canada.

Welcome, friends! Nice to meet you. I’m Kaitlin O’Shea, the writer of Preservation in Pink. “What is Preservation in Pink?” you might ask. Do you want the short or long version? Your choice.

The short story: 

  • Connecting the dots from every day life to historic preservation, with coffee in one hand.
  • Photographs, discussions, preservation education and advocacy, caffeinated and fueled by the belief the preservation improves everyone’s quality of life.
  • Pink as in pink flamingos. What’s with flamingos? Check it out here.

The long story. Grab a cup of coffee and I’ll explain.  

After graduating from the University of Mary Washington with a degree in historic preservation, I began working full time, far away from my preservation classmates and far away from home. Over time I realized how much I missed the constant, diverse preservation conversations with my Mary Washington colleagues. Our most inspiring conversations were those late at night in the drafting lab or after we’d been studying and working nonstop for days, absorbing all of the preservation material that we could (and fully caffeinated). We devised plans to save the world via historic preservation. It was an incredible learning environment.

Once out of school and settling into our professions, it can be hard to maintain that academic spark and inspiration. I didn’t want to become jaded or tired of my work, nor did I want others to get to that point. We needed to keep our conversations going. My way to do this was to start a newsletter that could keep ideas flowing and discussions evolving. It didn’t have to be academic. It could be anything preservation related. Enter the flamingos (the fun side of preservation! See the link above).

Over the years, the newsletter evolved to a blog. Topics changed, from preservation education to issues in the news to roadside America to travel and photography based. Today Preservation in Pink remains a medium for me to share my world, through the eyes of a historic preservationist, and to meet others interested in historic preservation, professionally or avocationally.

The mission remains the same: to encourage communication between new and seasoned preservationists with and about the world around them. And to show everyone that historic preservation is everywhere you look and makes a positive difference in the world.

Want to chat or send a flamingo photo? Comment below or scroll to the bottom of the page to find all of the social media links. I’d love to meet you.



Always on the lookout for sunshine and historic playgrounds.

Always on the lookout for sunshine and historic playgrounds.

Disclaimer: Please Note: The opinions expressed on Preservation in Pink are the opinions of the authors and contributors themselves and do not necessarily reflect the organizations for which they work and/or are associated with nor do they reflect the opinions of every contributor on this site or colleague.  Photographs: Unless otherwise noted, photographs were taken by and belong to Kaitlin O’Shea.

Preservation in Pink by Kaitlin O’Shea is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License. Based on a work at preservationinpink.wordpress.com. Permissions beyond the scope of this license may be available by contacting Kaitlin O’Shea.

58 thoughts on “About

  1. Donna Stroble says:

    I live with and take care of my 96 year old Grandmother in a farm house that was built in 1874. My family is not interested in keeping it up and I am so sad because there is alot of history here. I will try to give you the short story. Mathias Deihl torn down the old brick house that stood on this very spot and built the one I am living in. The old brick house was an Inn during the Revolutionary War, and the main road went right in front of this house down to the ford in the river. The barn was saved from Sheridan’s burning by Mary Deihl. You can read an account of it in The Burning by John Heatwole. But it fell down in 1999. I have always wondered if this place was worth saving. Also I have been looking for a picture of the old brick mansion to no avail. I hope you find this interesting, I tell the stories to any one that we listen. A lot of this information comes from the Deihl history book and my Grandmother.

  2. Kaitlin says:

    Sabra and Jamie, thank you for the comments! I’m glad you enjoy Preservation in Pink. Let me know if there is something you’d like to read, see, or contribute!

  3. Aaron Marcavitch says:

    Ok – well, I guess I missed this site somehow…geez…fantastic stuff, agree completely with the sentiment that we dont talk about it with a passion once we get out of school. Glad to see you are in New England. If you haven’t seen them, take a look at the Young Preservationists of Pittsburgh – thats another group with passion. Keep it up, wish I had time to blog (or anything interesting to say…)

  4. Catherine says:

    I found this blog when I first started HISP at UMW and I love your enthusiasm! It always gets me excited about pursuing my career in preservation.

  5. J. Mark Souther says:

    Nice concept and content – and yes, I do like flamingos. I’ll follow your blog and twitter feed now that I’ve discovered your site. It’s of direct interest on several levels. I spend a good deal of time thinking about sense of place in both my teaching, research, and public history work in Cleveland, Ohio, ranging from writing about tourism, preservation, and urban revitalization to a National Register nomination to co-directing the Cleveland Historical mobile app (http://clevelandhistorical.org). You might like to check out the app as a tool for re-imagining place (especially to overcome negative aspects of sense of place. You might also enjoy my new book American Tourism: Constructing a National Tradition (http://americantourismbook.com), which is all about placemaking efforts.

  6. Sherry Kepp says:

    Hi Kaitlin, Love your blog! and wondered if I could get some advise? I am 47 years old and I’m tossing around the idea of going back to school. Old houses, building and locations bring a joy to me that nothing else can touch and I would love to become a Preservationist! I have come to a time in my life where all of my children are grown and gone and marriages have come and gone. I finally have time in my life for me, but wonder if it might be too late to start into this field? I know four years of collage is involved and that’s a little scary after all this time, but I think I would commit to it better now than I could have before. Please from one who knows, what are your honest thoughts? And by the way….I love those pink beauties!


  7. Naomi says:

    Great blog! I’m not a preservationist, but a librarian who took an archival course and would much rather fix than buy new. I’m enjoying your posts and look forward to reading more.

  8. Paul says:

    Hi Kaitlin,
    Do you ever talk about rehab loans for older homes like these? Love your site. I am orignally from NC and now live in PA where rehabing older and historic homes can be common since there are so many.

    • Kaitlin says:

      Hi Paul. I have not mentioned rehab loans yet — tax credits a bit. If you have specific information that would be relevant to historic homeowners, let me know. Thanks for reading!

  9. inspiredmystic says:

    This is such a neat idea. I have a Bachelor of Arts degree in history, so I am very interested in this. I think this is great! Thanks!

  10. cevminneapolis says:

    This is a great blog! I’m just starting my masters in Historic Preservation with Boston Architectural College. I started a blog to write about Minnesota (where I am from) and my Historic Preservation adventures. I’d love it if you’d stop by and check it out!! :)

  11. gardentourist says:

    Hi! I’ve just landed here… am I dreaming? Wonderful blog, still alive and kicking even after many years (ok, it’s all about preservations, could it be otherwise?!): compliments! I’m interested in garden history and culture, and I’m sure I’ll find here a lot of inspiration here. See you!

  12. Simple Northern Life says:

    Great cause and I will be following preservation is extremely important can not imagine the Twin Cities without the historical beauty and any town or city in Minnesota should follow a code of preservation it gives our great state flavor.

  13. Dambreaker says:

    I always enjoy finding blogs with purpose.

    I lived in the New England area for a short time in 2008. I had been all over the place and visited different areas. With the exception of Vermont. I did drive through it, but did not stop to say that I was “there” and from My desire to say that I’ve been to all 50 states and living in that area, I inexplicably missed Vermont somehow. And then I moved away. Vermont still eludes.

    This was a most excellent find today!! Glad I took the time to look about.

  14. BoKnowsMortgages says:

    Kaitlin, hope all is well. Enjoyed reading your ABOUT. me! Like yourself I too am a preservationists but for residential homes. I believe a Green Home is an already existing home it just needs a makeover. That is where I come in with our programs and we close many of them in many states. So your blog interested me because we share the same ideas. Adios.

  15. Sean Temple says:


    We are Sarah Wisner and Sean Temple. We both grew up in Vermont and are planning on shooting a short film in Vermont this summer. We really love your site, and find the abandoned Vermont page very interesting. Our film is about two women struggling to survive after the collapse of society and we’re looking for abandoned areas around Vermont.

    We’re’ reaching out to you because we would love to collaborate with you on finding some locations for the film. It’d be a really fun opportunity to work on a film. I would definitely give you a “Location Scout” title in the credits of the film and link to your site in our eventual Kickstarter and website. I know your passion for exploring Vermont would exponentially increase the quality of the film we want to make.

    A prequel/test we made in December was recently accepted into the Independent Film Festival Boston and the thesis screenplay was chosen as a finalist for the Graduate Screenplay competition at the Ivy Film Festival. You can watch it to get a sense of the characters and tone. The thesis would basically be the next part of the story.

    the password is: safe

    If you’re interested you can email us at copper.abby.pictures@gmail.com. If so we can send you an early draft and start a discussion of what kind of locations we’re looking for.

    Thanks so much,
    Sean Temple & Sarah Wisner

  16. Susie says:

    Hi Kaitlin! As a historic preservationist just out of grad school I loved reading your “why I started this blog.” Me too! I love seeing all the East Coast pictures go by (especially Vermont, I spent a summer in Woodstock VT and would go back in a heart beat). So many beautiful buildings and landscapes. Thanks for the nice blog : )
    – Susie

      • Susie says:

        Well it has been almost a year but thanks : ) I’m doing cultural resource management now, which can be fun because the types of resources can be so varied. But I do miss the reading and research projects of the grad school world!

          • Susie says:

            Absolutely, thanks for getting back to me. Can I ask what you do in the preservation world (besides this nice blog)? :)

          • Kaitlin says:

            Of course! I was most recently the Historic Preservation Specialist for the Vermont Agency of Transportation (5 years). As of April 2015, I am a Preservation Planner with VHB, an engineering + environmental firm. So, primarily historic resource identification + evaluation, and working with the regs – Section 106, Section 4(f), as well as VT state laws.

  17. B says:

    Hi I would love you talk to you via email about some questions I have about your experience with abandoned buildings. I write for thewittyagent.com and am doing a piece on this subject.

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