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Museum of Riverside

Museum of Riverside

Harada House Site Preservation

The Riverside Metropolitan Museum received the National Historic Landmark Harada House from the heirs of Harold Harada in 2004.

The Museum, through funds donated by the National Trust for Historic Preservation, Western Office through their Preservation Needs Grant, hosted in 2004 a two day strategic visioning workshop. This workshop assembled over 25 individuals including representatives from the Harada family, Japanese American historians, scholars, community members and organizations, museum and historic preservation professionals.

The discussions resulted in short to long term goals for the interpretation, financial sustainability and preservation/ conservation of the site and collections. Since 2004, the Museum has been proactively engaged in preserving, interpreting and providing financial support for the Harada House Preservation Project.

Since the donation by members of the Harada family to the Museum significant progress has been made on the preservation of this site, whose inclusion in the 2004 National Park Service National Historic Landmark Threatened Site list reflects its fragile condition. The assessment and implementation of these projects has been possible due to the financial support provided by the Riverside City Council and grants from the Institute of Museum & Library Services, the National Trust for Historic Preservation, the Getty Foundation, a philanthropic division of the J. Paul Getty Trust, the California Council for the Humanities, the California Civil Liberties Public Education Program, and the California Cultural and Historic Endowment. The professional advice provided by the Harada House Ad-Hoc Advisory Council continues to be invaluable as the Museum proceeds in all its stewardship activities.

A Preliminary Architectural Conservation Assessment included a description of existing conditions and recommendations for historic site planning and development of the site was funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (2003). A Getty Architectural Planning Grant from the Getty Foundation, a philanthropic division of the J. Paul Getty trust, funded the development of a Long Range Conservation Plan/Historic Structure Report (2006). Simultaneously, the Museum has made significant progress on structural conditions which were worsened following the January 2005 rains. This includes emergency stabilization of the foundation, chimneys, and interior plaster as well as replacement of the roof. A California Cultural & Historical Endowment Planning Grant provided funds to develop the engineering specifications for the highest preservation priorities of seismic stabilization and site drainage.

In preparation for further preservation work, the Museum carefully disassembled the Harada garage, labeling each component for future reassembling. Currently the Museum is developing a preservation project to improve site drainage and to add additional structural shoring for the foundation and interior spaces of the house.

Click the thumbnail images below for a detailed version
Harada House Re-Roofing Project
Harada House Re-Roofing Project
Emergency stabilization of chimneys
Emergency stabilization of interior plaster
Emergency stabilization of interior plaster
Emergency stabilization of foundation - before
Emergency stabilization of foundation - after
State Recognition Award
(Riverside Metropolitan Museum Harada Family Archival Collection)
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