Exciting News for Preston Castle!

Garavaglia Architecture, Inc. congratulates the Preston Castle Foundation for obtaining the deed to this historic Preston Castle’s 5 freestanding buildings and nearly 13 acres of land from the State of California. Garavaglia Architecture, Inc. is proud to have worked with the Preston Castle Foundation’s Board on the project’s vision and planning, as well as its Core Historic Structures Report and National Significance reports for National Historic recognition.

Photo: Garavaglia Architecture, Inc.

From the PCF press release:

“The strikingly beautiful Romanesque style Preston Castle, on a hill in Ione, was actually the administration building for the Preston School of Industry, the first major attempt in California at rehabilitating, instead of just imprisoning, young offenders. Opened in 1894, the Preston School of Industry became a leader in the juvenile prison reform movement by giving convicted boys a real chance at life by educating them not only in academics, but in all of the useful trades of the time. Closed in 1960, when the Preston Youth Authority moved into a new administration building down the hill, the Preston Castle was left to deteriorate due to weather, vandalism, and general neglect. It now serves as a vacant, but vitally important landmark for Ione, Amador County, and the Mother Lode. It is a California State Historic Landmark and is on the National Register of Historic Places.

Originally incorporated as the Historic Preston Restoration Foundation in 1996, and renamed in 1999, the Preston Castle Foundation (PCF) is a California 501(c) (3) Nonprofit Public Benefit Corporation. In 2002, the Foundation was successful in obtaining a 55 year lease from the State of California for the purpose of preserving, rehabilitating, and utilizing the historic Preston Castle site.
To help raise money for this important project, the Foundation has been sponsoring numerous
fund raising events, historical tours, paranormal tours, event rentals, and soliciting memberships, grants, and donations. Funds raised enabled much needed improvements to be accomplished, including a new roof, a new 4th floor, refurbished front porch, rebuilt windows, safety upgrades, and many items relating to structural stabilization. Completing these projects satisfied key terms of the lease that would allow transferring ownership from the State to the PCF. This prompted, in 2011,
the Preston Castle Foundation Board of Directors, under the leadership of Carol Lipchik, Director, to begin their Quest for the Deed. Carol and her committee put together a large binder with Business Plans, Budgets, Strategic Planning, a Core Historic Structures Report and the Vision and Mission of the PCF. This book was used at a meeting with the landlord, the Department of General Services of the State of California, to officially ask for transfer of the deed to the Preston Castle property.”

Learn more about this important step in the Preston Castle’s revitalization here.



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