State Resources



Michigan Historic Preservation Network ( MHPN)

Founded in 1981, MHPN is the largest membership organization in Michigan dedicated to recognizing and preserving the state’s rich cultural and architectural heritage.

Their Historic Resources Council compiles an annual directory of craftspersons and businesses with knowledge and skills to help evaluate and work on your property:


Michigan Barn Preservation Network (MBPN)

Founded in 1995, MBPN is a volunteer state-wide nonprofit dedicated to promoting appreciation, preservation, and rehabilitation of Michigan barns, farmsteads, and rural communities.

An annual conference, hands-on workshops, quarterly newsletter, and a Technical Committee provide direct information to owners. The Network maintains an on-line directory of experienced barn workers, contractors, engineers, architects, and other services for barns. The section Frequently Asked Questions addresses the basics of barn preservation and repair.


State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO)

The Michigan SHPO provides technical assistance to local communities in their efforts to identify, evaluate, designate, interpret, and protect Michigan’s historic resources. It also administers an incentives program that can be applied to properties with historic designation; included are federal tax credits and pass-through grants available to Certified Local Governments for projects in partnership with owners.

All nominations for the National Register of Historic Places are submitted first to Michigan’s SHPO, which provides feedback to the nominating individual or group. After preliminary review, the SHPO sends each nomination to the state’s Historic Preservation Review Board, which then recommends whether the State Historic Preservation Officer should send the nomination to the Keeper of the National Register. If the nomination is recommended for listing in the National Register by the SHPO, the nomination is sent to the National Park Service, which approves or denies the nomination. If approved, the property is entered officially by the Keeper of the National Register into the National Register of Historic Places.  

Historical Society of Michigan – The Historical Society of Michigan’s history awards honor individuals, organizations, and more with recognition for their contributions to Michigan’s history. There are quite a few categories but the the significant ones for preservationists are the History Awards and the Milestone Awards.

Michigan History Center, LansingA state resource on state history, the Michigan History Center is open to the public with staff to assist you. Among its vast offices and resources, areas of particular interest to owners researching a historic property are:

Library of Michigan

Library of Michigan Information for Visitors

Information about online newspapers from Michigan

Information about family history research at the Library of Michigan

State Archives an extensive collection of documents, photos, etc. and a historic collection of Michigan newspapers.

State Archives information for visitors
Archives of Michigan Finding Aids

Rural Property Inventoriescontains information on Michigan farmsteads; compiled between the 1930s and 1950s. Includes limited information about Leelanau County.

An essay and illustrations about the Rural Property Inventories

Michigan Historical Marker Program
Applications for a Michigan Historical Marker are available from the Michigan History Center. Staff will guide the applicant through the process before the completed application is submitted to the Michigan Historical Commission for review and approval.

Information about the Michigan Historical Marker Program is available at these two sites:,9075,7-361-85150—,00.html,9075,7-361-85150_85952-464597–,00.html